Giving birth for the first time is, indeed a joyous occasion. But this new experience is also very capable of exposing your body to many diseases and might make you vulnerable as well. It is normal for a woman to feel tired, and to have several other symptoms in the coming months, after childbirth. But for some women, these symptoms can transform into something more troublesome and may point to a type of thyroid problem known as postpartum thyroiditis.

What is it?

Postpartum Thyroiditis is the inflammation of thyroid gland that occurs during the first year after childbirth, miscarriage, or abortion. It is also known as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Who is at risk?

Although if you’ve been pregnant recently, it is of greater chances you may develop postpartum thyroiditis, but you’re more open to this if you happen to have the following conditions:

· Type 1 diabetes.

· Women with the increased level of anti-thyroid antibodies who also have normal thyroid hormones.

· Women with increased anti-peroxidase antibodies.

How does it affect?

If there is an increase in your thyroid levels, your whole body may feel elevated. You may experience irregular heart-racing, and you may feel anxious with shaky hands, more sweating, and insomnia.

On the other hand, if your thyroid level falls down, you may feel sluggish, too tired to do anything with a dose of depression, muscle cramps and also, constipation. In both the cases, the thyroid gland present in the front of your neck may swell and become tender though you may not feel extreme pain.

Who needs to be tested?

Any woman who tends to have the symptoms of an underactive or overactive thyroid should have a TSH test to know whether their thyroid levels are normal or not.

You may also have a TSH examination after pregnancy if your doctor thinks that you are vulnerable to show thyroid dysfunction and if you happen to have a thyroid condition, it’s likely for you to stop receiving your treatment after starting with it, in a few months.

What about next pregnancy?

During or after your first pregnancy if you have dealt with the changed thyroid function then it is very likely that your thyroid level will again change. Also, your doctor will, this time, order you to have a TSH test to check your thyroid during your pregnancy or even after delivery too.

How will it affect the baby?

No need to panic, ladies! It has been found that most of the babies tend to have completely normal thyroid function even if their mothers have a thyroid problem during the pregnancy or after their delivery.

Food and Nutrition

Even if you have postpartum thyroiditis, it is a must for you to take nutrients in the form of food as much as you can during the pregnancy or even after the delivery.

Because the thyroid uses iodine to prepare thyroid hormone, iodine is very important for a mother during pregnancy. However, certain cases of people with autoimmune thyroid disease may not get benefits from iodine, and hence, may also get their condition of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism more complicated. Therefore, it is mandatory to discuss your diet with your doctor, so that you’ll be able to keep a check on the level of thyroid hormones.

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