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Hair Loss and Thyroid Disease: What Do You Need to Know?

When your hormones become imbalanced, it can cause your entire body to feel a little bit off kilter—and among the many possible symptoms and side effects, hair loss is one of the most common. For those who have thyroid disease, which is characterized by imbalanced hormone production, hair loss is just one of many effects that can be expected.

How Thyroid Disease Impacts Hair Loss

To understand how thyroid disease contributes to hair loss, it is first important to understand how hair growth works more generally. There is a kind of natural cadence to hair growth, and at any given time some of your hair follicles should be in a growth stage while a smaller number—usually no more than 10 percent—is in the rest stage. Changes in the body, such as hormonal imbalances, can throw off that careful balance—and when that happens, and too many follicles are resting at a given moment, that can lead to hair thinning, or even to balding.

While many medical conditions can cause this kind of hormonal shift, thyroid disease is among the most prevalent. The specific cause can be either an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) or an overactive one (hyperthyroidism), but in either case changes to the hormones that regulate the hair growth cycle can lead to noticeable effects.

Other Symptoms of Thyroid Disease

Of course, it is important to note that thyroid disease is a serious medical condition with wide-ranging effects—and while hair loss can be a good indicator that its thyroid disease you are dealing with, it may also be the least of your worries. Here are some other common signs of thyroid disease, all of which warrant careful medical attention.

  • Sudden shifts in mood
  • Difficulty tolerating extremes in temperature
  • Insomnia
  • Lethargy
  • Extreme shifts in weight
  • Abnormal menstruation

Generally, thyroid disease can be diagnosed accurately with a simple blood test—so if you do experience any symptoms on this list, make an appointment to see your physician sooner rather than later.

Getting Treatment for Thyroid Disease—And for Hair Loss

Not only is thyroid disease diagnosable, but it’s also treatable—and once you and your doctor find a treatment regimen that works for you, your hair loss issues should resolve themselves. Again, though, we stress the importance of having this treatment begun as soon as possible.

If you’re dealing with hair loss for any reason, there are always solutions—both temporary and permanent—that we can provide you with; some who are just beginning their thyroid disease treatments come to us for extensions or wigs to wear until their hair comes back in, and of course we are always happy to help. Come see us at Hair Professionals to learn more.