All over the country, school has started or is about to start and many parents are focused on getting the kids back into the school routine. However, if you have noticed your teenager is having issues simular to ADHD, you might want to have their thyroid checked out. It might be Grave’s disease. The number of diagnosed cases in teenagers is on the rise.
I will say that I don’t agree with one doctor’s thought about taking out the thyroid without event trying to heal it. Taking out the thyroid sets you up for a lifetime of thyroid hormone replacement and rarely does a synthetic hormone make you feel the same as your body’s natural hormone.
Below is the link to the orginal video report by Jean Enersen:
Plummeting grades, weight change, trouble focusing – it might be easy to blame your teen’s behavior on the changes in adolescence. Your family doctor might suspect attention deficit disorder. But Graves’ disease, a condition where the thyroid works overtime, can easily be overlooked in kids and teens.
Alissa’s parents noticed that their daughter had a hard time staying on task.
“Even simple things, like my mom would tell me to go get her juice and she’d tell me a specific flavor and I’d walk to the fridge and I’d forget,” said Alissa.
While Alissa’s symptoms mimicked attention deficit disorder, the teen was actually struggling with Grave’s disease, caused by an overabundance of thyroid hormone.
According to Andrew Bauer, MD, director of the Thyroid Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, “It’s kind of a thyroid gland that’s gone rogue.”
Check a child’s thyroid by having them look up at the ceiling. An enlarged thyroid will be obvious just above the collarbone.
Patients can take medication to help block the hormone production. Other options include radioactive iodine or surgery.
Dr. Scott Adzick, surgeon-in-chief at the Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia, said, “There should be no recurrence risk of Graves’ disease when you take the entire thyroid out.”
Alissa had surgery to remove her thyroid gland. She says the “fog” she once had has lifted.
“My high school GPA was actually a 1.7, that’s how bad I was doing in school,” she said.
Now she’s an “A” and “B” student in college, making her father very proud.
Doctors say weight loss, elevated heart rate and skin that is moist to the touch are symptoms of Graves’ disease. While most think of Graves ‘ disease as an adult condition, one in 10,000 kids will be diagnosed or about 8,500 cases every year.
Patients with these symptoms can also be suffering from Hashimoto’s, which causes the thyroid to continuously cycle up and down. More common than either of those disorders, however, is underactive thyroid, where the gland produces too little hormone. In both of those cases, treatment involves synthetic hormones.