*This is the first in a three-part thyroid series in which local Portland acupuncturist Erin Brockmeyer will address the prevalence of thyroid disease, the truth about Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, and the implications of thyroid disease on your health. Each of these blogs will also clue you into how taking a holistic approach that includes acupuncture can help you meet your health goals, such as increasing energy, improving fertility, and managing your weight despite your thyroid disease.
Hypothyroid Treatment with
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine
Has it been a while since you remember feeling really good?
Do you wake up wishing you could go straight back to sleep?
Have you had a really hard time losing weight lately?
Have your sleep and digestion been “off?”
Do your blood tests always come back normal, and does your doctor tell you that there is nothing wrong?
Do you suspect that you should be feeling better than you are?
If you have answered ‘Yes’ to any of these questions, it could be that you have a thyroid issue. As an acupuncturist, I look at your body as a whole system, so if there is one thing that is off (such as your thyroid) I want to address not only the thyroid, but everything else in your body system that is affected by or affects your thyroid. It is what allows me to help you find symptomatic relief from the fatigue, body aches, weight gain, and menstrual irregularities that your thyroid dysfunction has caused while also helping to regulate the underlying issue(s) that led to thyroid problems. This blogpost will address the following three things:
- Signs and symptoms common to thyroid imbalance
- Possible reasons why we see so many thyroid issues these days
- Basic treatment options acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can offer
Signs and Symptoms
You can thank Oprah for making the thyroid a talked about body part. In 2007 she unveiled her thyroid diagnosis, and people took notice. Finally women were aware of this potential problem, and started asking their doctors about it. As with many Oprah-related things, however, the focus became very narrow, and being diagnosed hypothyroid became associated only with being overweight. Although the inability to lose weight, or a sudden unexplained weight gain, can certainly be a clue to a thyroid issue, the symptoms that can be traced back to thyroid disorders are many and extremely varied. Here are just a few:
infertility, recurrent miscarriage
chronic sore throat
hypoglycemia (feeling shaky if you don’t eat often)changes in your menstrual cycle
As an acupuncturist, I look at all of the imbalances or discomforts (symptoms) that you have and I find patterns that link them all together. I don’t treat your thyroid in the way that taking thyroid medication would. I treat YOU, so as you get healthier, your thyroid will also function better. Some of the treatments I recommend may directly affect your thyroid, but always with the goal of improving your overall health.
How Common are Thyroid Disorders?
Thyroid disorders are becoming more and more prevalent in America. Here are some facts, courtesy of the American Thyroid Association:
1 in 8 women will develop a thyroid disorder.
Up to 60% of those with thyroid disease are unaware of it.
So why all the problems? There are likely numerous contributing factors in this seeming epidemic. First of all, you have been inundated with chemicals in the form of plastics, pesticides, hormones in our food and water supply, toxic cleaning products and so on for several decades. Current research shows many of these to be hormone disruptors. Secondly, many of you live a chronically stressed life. Your adrenals become taxed by stress, and as your adrenals work closely with your thyroid, it is common to see issues in one system cause issues with the other. The price for the standard American way of life may have been your thyroid health.
How can Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Help your Thyroid?
After tracing back possible triggers, such as pregnancy, major stress, illness or trauma, and looking at your current antagonists — the things that make you really feel bad — we map out a custom plan. That plan can include:
- Acupuncture will help with symptoms, immune function, stress/relaxation, and hormonal balancing.
- Herbal medicine is a strong and safe internal medicine that can support your body as a whole and can treat specific issues. It is also completely customized to you and your body.
- Nutrition recommendations that will remove problematic foods, and introduce healing foods. I promise that you will still eat yummy foods!
- My support. I have had lots of training, have successfully treated many people with thyroid issues, and I have been where you are — certain that there is a way that I can feel better that does not just involve taking a pill. In other words, you will have the support of a person who has expertise and understanding.
If you have read this far and you recognize yourself in these symptoms, or if you remember a time when you felt well and would like to feel that way again, head over to my website to explore some more and to schedule your free consultation. Don’t live in Portland? No problem. Contact me to find out how we can work together long-distance.
It is time to take control of your health.