Thyroiditis is made up of a number of disorders that cause thyroidal inflammation which can either cause abnormally high or low levels of thyroid hormones in the blood. Thyroid a gland located in the front of the neck right below the Adam’s apple makes hormones that control metabolism and the pace of the body’s processes such as heart rate and body temperature.
They also help convert food into energy to keep the body functioning. Most thyroid issues are as a result of an abnormal production of thyroid hormones and range from goiter to life threatening cancer.
The different types of thyroiditis include; Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the US, Postpartum thyroiditis (triggered after giving birth), subacute thyroiditis, silent thyroiditis, drug-induced thyroiditis, radiation-induced thyroiditis, acute thyroiditis, and Riedel’s thyroiditis.
Each type of this disease has its own unique causes, diagnoses and risks.
Signs and symptoms
There are several signs and symptoms of thyroiditis given the different types. These may include fatigue, depression, cold intolerance, weight gain, dry skin and hair, muscle cramps, constipation, decreased concentration and sleepiness, leg swelling, depression, vague aches and pains and puffy eyes. When severe, symptoms include a slow heart rate, low body temperature, heart failure and coma – cause is suspected immune mediated reaction.
Thyroiditis is generally caused by an attack on the thyroid, resulting in inflammation and damage to the thyroid cells. This disease is often considered a malfunction of the immune system. The cause may be an infection, such as a virus or bacteria, which works in the same way as antibodies to cause inflammation in the glands.
In addition, some drugs, such as interferon and amiodarone, are believed to trigger thyroiditis because they have a tendency of damaging thyroid glands. Other claims however point to the cause being genetic suggesting that genes may make you more likely to develop the condition.
Medical marijuana and Thyroiditis
Medical marijuana is a very old medicinal herb that has been used for thousands of years to treat a great variety of ailments. Cannabinoids, have been shown to have anti-bacterial, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and anxiety reducing properties that have helped a great deal in several illnesses.
Medical marijuana has been found through research to treat inflammation, lack of appetite and pain. Killers and antibiotics like aspirin which are also associated with their side effects like nausea and dizziness.
Although research has not found medical marijuana to fully treat thyroiditis, it has been found to treat the underlying symptoms associated with the illness. Research studies have found that THC reduces inflammatory responses in people with autoimmune disorders and in this case thyroiditis.
Certain marijuana strains are known to be uplifting and some sedating which enables it to modify receptors that control metabolism. Strains high in the Cannabinoid CBD, which neither can cause a high nor psychoactive tend to balance the metabolism.
Because it involves a series of symptoms among which is loss of appetite, patients especially with severe thyroiditis are susceptible to losing weight. On a positive note, medical marijuana can also stimulate appetite and instigate weight gain. This is realized by the THC cannabinoid that stimulates appetite.
NOTE: There is some risk involving patients with rapid heart rates, as marijuana can increase one’s heart rate. Therefore only with the help of a doctor, one can decide what type of medical marijuana is the safest for a thyroiditis patient.
Cannabis has been used as medicine for several years now although in the United States, it is still classified as a Schedule 1 drug. However, this has not stopped scientists and researchers from digging deep to discover the therapeutic compounds in the plant. However, if this substance could potentially save the lives of Americans from the pain and suffering of thyroid and autoimmune disease, we could at least examine the possibility of its use in health care.