What Does Your Thyroid Do?

Our team at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg can help with various conditions that impact Virginia residents. For instance, we can help with thyroid problems in Fredericksburg and Stafford, VA, to ensure your health and safety. But what exactly is this organ? Understanding its nature and purpose can ensure you manage conditions properly.

What Is This Organ?

Few people understand what this important endocrine gland does. As a small gland located just underneath your skin at the front of your neck, it helps release specific hormones throughout the body. Hormones are chemicals that help manage certain functions of the body. Specifically, this gland aims to control your metabolic rate or the speed at which you process food.

It’s part of your endocrine system, a network of glands that release and manage your hormone levels. It includes your pituitary, hypothalamus, parathyroid, adrenal, and pineal glands, as well as your pancreas and ovaries (for women) and testes (for men). When operating correctly, your thyroid ensures you digest food properly.

Does It Help With Other Bodily Functions?

While it’s critical for your metabolic rate, this gland’s hormones help with far more bodily functions. Though it’s possible to live without it, the following functions will all be heavily affected, and you’ll need to take regular hormones to minimize adverse reactions:

  • Heart rate
  • Brain development 
  • Body temperature 
  • Mental acuity
  • Skin health 
  • Bone maintenance 
  • Breathing
  • Fertility 

This gland releases hormones and interacts with other glands and organs in your body. For example, it regularly releases hormones to tell your stomach and digestive system to start processing food. Like other glands in the endocrine system, it’s connected to these organs via a complex network that ensures proper hormone delivery.

What Happens If It Malfunctions?

When this gland operates poorly or stops functioning, you’ll likely start to gain weight unexpectedly. That’s because it helps regulate your digestion and speeds up this process to make it more effective. Without regular hormone release, your digestive system will be sluggish, your food will take longer, and you’ll gain weight more quickly.

Even worse, you’ll likely experience low energy levels, fatigue, problems with your heart health, cold or hot flashes, skin and bone issues, and even fertility problems. Failure of this organ is a fairly common issue, meaning you must talk with your doctor regularly if you notice symptoms.

Getting Help Today

Please call us at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg if you notice any thyroid issues in Fredericksburg and Stafford, VA. When you contact us at (540) 371-1226, you can set up an appointment to learn more about this condition and how it affects you.

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