Friday, July 15, 2016


Hyperthyroidism simply means you have an overactive thyroid.  This is a condition that occurs when your thyroid glands produce too much of a hormone that is called thyroxine.  Hyperthyroidism can be detrimental to your body because it can accelerate your metabolism significantly, which could cause sudden weight loss, result in a rapid or irregular heartbeat, sweating, and it could cause you to become nervous and/or irritable.  Thyroid activity affects all your body systems, so excessive thyroid hormone will exaggerate your normal body functions and produce a hypermetabolic state.  Several treatment options are available for this condition, so do not get discouraged.

As always health promotion and disease prevention proves to be the main goal of Total Home Health.  Our health care professionals will provide you with the following points of advice related to this condition:

·      Take all of your medication as directed, even when you’re feeling better.
·      Check with your health care provider before taking any over-the counter medication(s).
·      Adjust your diet to go hand in hand with your increase in metabolism when needed.
·      Seek measures to reduce stress if at all possible, and get rest as needed.
·      Notify your health care provider of fever, increased restlessness, heart palpitations or any chest pain.

When you go to see your doctor if hyperthyroidism is suspected, they will be able to pinpoint at least some of the following signs and symptoms that are indicative of this condition, which include:

·      Nervousness, irritability, hyperactivity, uncontrollable emotions, decreased attention span
·      Weakness, easily fatigued, intolerance to exercise
·      Heat intolerance
·      Weight change (usually loss) with an increase in appetite
·      Insomnia and interrupted sleep
·      Frequent stools and diarrhea
·      Menstrual irregularities (decreased flow or flow that completely stops)
·      Warm, sweaty, and flushed skin that will begin to have a velvety-smooth texture
·      Tremors, vision changes
·      Exophthalmos (abnormal protrusion of one or both eyes), only seen in Graves’ disease
·      Hair loss
·      Goiter (abnormal enlargement of the thyroid)
·      Increased heart rate and palpitations

It is an important point for you to remember that findings of hyperthyroidism in the older adult population are often more subtle than those in younger clients.  Occasionally an older adult client who has hyperthyroidism will demonstrate lack of interest or withdrawal, instead of the typical hypermetabolic indications as mentioned above.  In addition, older adult clients that are diagnosed with hyperthyroidism often present with heart failure and atrial fibrillation as well. 
When you choose Total Home Health to be a part of your health care team we will ensure you are completely satisfied all day, every day.  The care you receive will always be centered on you and you only, with every intervention hoping to bring out positive results for your health.  Following are a few interventions for hyperthyroidism that you will be a part of when you begin your home health services with us.  Our health care professionals will:

·      Promote a calm environment for you.
·      Assess your mental status and decision-making skills routinely and intervene as needed to ensure safety for you and your loved ones.
·      Monitor your nutritional status to ensure what you are receiving is adequate for the demand of your body in its condition.
·      Monitor your intake and output, along with your weight routinely.
·      If you experience exophthalmos, we will provide adequate eye protection and care for you.
·      Monitor your vital signs (blood pressure, temperature, oxygen level, respiratory rate, pulse) for any findings of heart failure.
·      Report any temperature increase of 1 degree or more to your provider immediately.
·      Assure your loved ones that any abrupt changes in your behavior are likely disease related and should subside with antithyroid therapy that will bring your levels back closer to normal.
·      Educate you that you should avoid any excess palpation (feeling and/or pushing on) the thyroid gland.
·      Ensure that you are following your antithyroid medication regimen carefully in order for your hormone levels to resume more normal functioning.

Your provider will discuss with you the various treatment options related to your specific case of hyperthyroidism.  Your disease will of course be treated with the least invasive measures first, however if your body does not respond to the least invasive treatment, surgery may be an option.  If that is the case, your provider will discuss more in-depth treatment with you thoroughly if it is recommended.  Until that point, the professionals with Total Home Health will visit you routinely to assess your condition and see that your care is delivered in the most positive ways possible.  When you enroll with Total Home Health, you will automatically be a part of our family, and you will always receive the best of the best!

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