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Hypothyroidism refers to an underactive thyroid. We look at its symptoms and how an underactive thyroid can be treated.
Hypothyroidism is under activity of the thyroid which occurs when the gland does not make enough thyroid hormones to meet the body's needs. This results in a slowing of many metabolic processes in the body which may have any or all of the following symptoms:
In women, periods may become heavier than usual.
Most people need between 50 and 150 micrograms per day although very occasionally someone might need a higher dose. The symptoms of an underactive thyroid gland usually take several weeks to improve once treatment is started.
If you become pregnant you should continue with your thyroxine tablets. They will not harm the baby in any way. In fact, the dose of thyroxine may need to be increased during the pregnancy to ensure your thyroid hormone levels remain normal. You should seek advice from your GP as soon as you know you are pregnant.