6 Causes of goiter (Thyroid Swelling)

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The thyroid gland is located in your neck, just below your Adam’s apple. It secretes hormones that help regulate bodily functions such as metabolism, the process by which food is converted into energy. It also controls heart rate, breathing, digestion, and mood.

A goiter is a condition that causes your thyroid to grow in size. A goiter can develop in anyone, but women are more likely to develop one. It can sometimes affect how the thyroid works.

A goiter is an enlarged thyroid gland that causes swelling in the neck.

One of the most common thyroid disorders is goiter. It does not necessarily imply that the thyroid is malfunctioning. However, in some cases, it can indicate an underlying thyroid disease that requires treatment.

4 Signs & Symptoms of a goiter

The most noticeable symptom of a goiter is swelling in your neck. If you have thyroid nodules, they can range in size from very small to very large. Swelling may be exacerbated by the presence of nodules.

Other signs and symptoms include:

1. Difficulties with swallowing or breathing

2. You have a hoarse voice

3. Dizziness when raising your arm above your head

4. Coughing

6 Causes of a goiter

1. Thyroid hyperthyroidism

Another cause of goiters is hyperthyroidism or an overactive thyroid gland. The thyroid produces an excessive amount of thyroid hormone in people with this condition.

This is usually caused by Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s immune system turns on itself and attacks the thyroid gland, causing it to swell.

2. Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is caused by a thyroid gland that is underactive. When the thyroid gland produces insufficient thyroid hormone, it is stimulated to produce more, resulting in swelling.

This is usually caused by Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, a condition in which the body’s immune system attacks its own tissue, causing thyroid gland inflammation.

3. Hormonal changes: Thyroid function can be affected by pregnancy, puberty, and menopause.

4. Thyroiditis: Inflammation, such as that caused by infection, can result in goiter.

5. Excessive iodine: This can result in a swollen thyroid.

6. Thyroid cancer is more common in women.