As our world changes, we are finding that some diseases such as low thyroid, or hypothyroidism, are on the rise. Dr. Laura Deleruyelle holds a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree from Case Western Reserve University. She says that “hypothyroidism rates have skyrocketed since the US started spraying pesticides and insecticides on our soil. That has basically destroyed the iodine in our soil, so you can’t pick it up through your skin by walking barefoot, and it’s no longer in our fruits and vegetables.” Dr. Laura points out that thyroid glands need iodine to function properly. The change in the levels we have in the environment could be causing an increase in hypothyroidism.

What do you do?

The lack of iodine might be one of the things causing hypothyroidism levels to rise, but you shouldn’t rush out and self-medicate with iodine. Dr. Klein specializes in thyroid balance and his background goes beyond that of a “routine” family or general practitioner. He believes that patients should pay attention to their symptoms and get their thyroid checked if they are experiencing: fatigue– especially in the mid- to late afternoon and evening, frequent feelings of cold, weight gain or inability to lose weight, increased hair loss, and/or brittle hair and nails. However, an issue with testing is that the standard blood test can leave many people without answers. Dr. Klein believes that the tests might not always come back with conclusive results. There are several tests that can be performed to see where your levels are. In addition, your provider should ultimately decide whether you have low thyroid based on the symptoms and should treat on that basis.

Treatment Options for Hypothyroidism

There are many different options for treating hypothyroidism and each person might respond differently. Sarah Roberson, who has been practicing in the Rogue Valley for over 10 years, says that “In some cases, a trial of herbal supportive supplements for the thyroid or low dose thyroid medication is indicated and found to be quite helpful.” Dr. Klein states that there is no “one size fits all” for thyroid treatment. He believes a combination of treatments such as lifestyle changes and Armour thyroid or the T3 form of the hormone known as liothyronine could be beneficial.

Experts agree that tests aren’t always conclusive, and you should always listen to the symptoms. Hypothyroidism is on the rise and affects about 4.6% of people according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. If you are experiencing fatigue, frequently feeling cold, have hair loss and/or brittle nails, you should call 541-773-9772. At your appointment, your provider will discuss possible treatment options.