Pediatric Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a condition of the body in which the thyroid gland does not produce the hormones in the right amounts. The symptoms include fatigue, weight gain, dry skin, brittle and dry hair, constipation, insomnia, depression, memory loss, thickened tongue, cold intolerance and delayed puberty.

It is common in many children these days and affects their physical, mental and social development severely. In extreme cases, the child can even develop Goiter which scars their self-esteem for life. It can even prove fatal if lest untreated for a long time. When a child of over twelve months of age develops this problem, it is referred to as Juvenile hypothyroidism and its main cause is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

The hypothyroidism in children and adolescents is a bit harder to cure because of the complications of the growing body are also involved. If the child is affected by this disease in the early years of his/her life, the chances of the disease developing into Grave’s disease are very high. If infected, the child can show exophthalmos, tachycardia, and hyperactivity. Besides, there have been cases of even a severe psychomotor delay

Young patients are initially treated with anti-thyroid drugs with a controlled diet rich in iodine. Any lithium containing drug is not administered to them as it can prove fatal. Even foods like broccoli, spinach, mussels, peanuts, soybeans, cassava and millets which are otherwise good for the growth of a child are not advisable. They can act as thyroid function suppressants causing problems in the physical growth of the child. Foods rich in iodine like shell fish, seafood and organic vegetables are recommended.

Moreover, the diet has to be supplemented with vitamins A, B, C and E because they help in quick absorption of the medicines working for the thyroid function. Plenty of sunlight is required along with calcium rich foods to strengthen the skeletal network of the child’s body and also to hasten the healing process. The addition of herbs to the child’s diet is also highly beneficial as they have no side-effects on the body.

Herbs like Bladderwrack, kelp, Ashwagandha root and Irish moss are useful in curing many problems caused due to Pediatric hypothyroidism. They help in the warding off of the depression and muscular pain which is a byproduct of Pediatric hypothyroidism.

The introduction of acupuncture in the child’s routine can also be of immense help. This alternative technique of healing has shown positive results in the treatment of Pediatric hypothyroidism as it improves the flow of blood to the organs including the thyroid gland. The gland can function better when supplied with more oxygen and would fasten the healing process. The addition of beta carotene in the diet has also proven beneficial in the treatment.

With the above said remedies, it is also very important to treat the child suffering from Pediatric hypothyroidism with love and care. The right environment will give the child a sense of security and also help him overcome the dreaded time of suffering through Pediatric hypothyroidism.

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