Using acupuncture and Chinese medicine for thyroid disorders is not a new idea. Lab tests for thyroid only go back a few decades, but traditional Chinese physicians understood the signs and symptoms that we now know can be caused by thyroid disorders. For centuries, they used acupuncture and Chinese medicine for thyroid treatment, based on traditional methods of diagnosis. We bring that ancient knowledge and experience into modern-day treatment of thyroid disorders, making more treatment options available. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help support thyroid health and prevent illness, as well as assist in healing a poorly functioning thyroid. The thyroid gland is an important part of the endocrine system, which regulates the body’s hormones; even a small thyroid disorder has widespread impacts on metabolic function and long-term health. Thyroid disorders are common and chronic. Symptoms are vague, thyroid problems often go undiagnosed or untreated. Thyroid problems can be caused by both too little thyroid hormone (hypothyroidism) or too much (hyperthyroidism). Symptoms of hypothyroidism include fatigue, depression, poor sleep, dry skin and hair, heavy periods, sensitivity to cold, and muscle and joint pain. Symptoms of hyperthyroid include anxiety, irritability, hyperactivity, sweating, trembling, hair loss, and missed periods. Another form of thyroid disorder, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, can cause hyperthyroid and hypothyroid symptoms at different stages of the disease. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease, as is Grave’s disease (the most common cause of hyperthyroidism). Autoimmunity occurs when the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues. The use of acupuncture and Chinese medicine for thyroid expands your treatment options. Traditional Chinese medicine focuses on balancing opposites, correcting deficiency and excess, and regulating body systems. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine for thyroid treatment applies these traditional theories of balance and harmony in the body. Traditional Chinese physicians recognized the contrasting symptom patterns of hyperthyroid and hypothyroid conditions, but called them by other names. They applied different herbal formulas and acupuncture treatment regimens as needed. We now know that stress truly has an impact on thyroid function and can trigger autoimmune disease, including Grave’s (hyperthyroid), Hashimoto’s, metabolism and aging. We also know that thyroid function and blood sugar metabolism are closely tied, and a disturbance in one can lead to problems with the other. Genetics and lifestyle can also have an impact. Traditional Chinese herbal medicine is always prescribed in formulas, which combine and balance the synergistic properties of several herbs. Rarely is one single herb prescribed alone; they are built using the basis of traditional formulas, along with biomedical understanding of thyroid disorders. Acupuncture treatment for thyroid disorders is traditionally used along with an herbal formula and nutritional prescription. Acupuncture generally has a homeostatic, or balancing effect on body systems. Acupuncture can also help manage many of the symptoms and complications associated with thyroid disorders, such as insomnia, fatigue, anxiety, depression and menstrual problems. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be part of an effective wellness program, both for preventing and helping to heal thyroid disorders. Gulf Coast Acupuncture and Fertility is here to support you on your journey to optimum health and feeling like yourself again! Call and book your appointment today!