Mental health problems may be a result of thyroid issues

Many women may be unaware of a common health issue that is caused by problems with the thyroid gland. EmpowHer reports that some mental health disorders are caused by a malfunctioning thyroid.

For example, people who are treated for bipolar disorder with lithium can experience symptoms such as depression, fatigue and weight gain, according to Mary Shomon, a thyroid patient advocate and author. However, they may be unaware that these are the symptoms of an underactive thyroid, or hypothyroidism, which is a side-effect of lithium.

Also, hyperthyroidism can cause anxiety or panic attacks, but many people are incorrectly diagnosed with panic disorder.

"It turns out that once their thyroid is properly treated, the panic attacks and the anxiety go away," Shomon told the news source. She added that "there's actually some physicians who consider it a standard practice, before they will put anyone on an antidepressant, to do a complete thyroid evaluation."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, treatment for hypothyroidism usually requires the replacement of thyroid hormone by taking a single daily dose of synthetic hormone that is adjusted to produce normal levels.