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Yes, The Thyroid Can Affect Men As Well! | Affinity Health

Affinity Health, a leading provider of high-quality health insurance, sheds light on the signs and symptoms of thyroid disease for men.


January is Thyroid Awareness Month – the perfect opportunity to raise awareness around this surprisingly common but often misunderstood disease.


While stats in South African are unknown, figures inside of the United States suggest that about 13-million adults are diagnosed with thyroid disorders each year. It’s estimated that for every diagnosis, there is someone who is undiagnosed. While women are seven times more at risk than men and have a one-in-five chance of developing thyroid disease, men can also suffer from thyroid disorders.


“Thyroid issues in males are frequently overlooked. It can be difficult for males to recognise weight gain or loss. Also, exhaustion, and muscle weakness are signs and symptoms of thyroid disease because these are common in the general population,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Health. “This can cause a delay in thyroid diagnosis and therapy.”

What are Thyroid Diseases?

The thyroid gland is a tiny organ that wraps around the windpipe in the front of the neck (trachea). It’s in the shape of a butterfly, smaller in the middle, with two large wings. The main function of the thyroid is to make hormones that help control many vital functions of your body. When your thyroid doesn’t work properly, it can negatively impact your health.


Too much thyroid hormone can result in p a condition called hyperthyroidism, while too little can cause hypothyroidism. Both conditions are serious and need to be treated by your healthcare provider.


Signs And Symptoms Of Thyroid Disease In Men

Thyroid symptoms in males differ depending on whether they have hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.


Hyperthyroidism is more commonly caused by autoimmune illnesses such as Graves’ disease, thyroid gland inflammation, and hyperfunctioning thyroid nodules. Hyperthyroidism can result from an overdose of hypothyroid medications.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism in men include:

Rapid weight loss:

Hyperthyroidism boosts your metabolism, resulting in rapid weight reduction despite unchanging eating habits.

Fast heart rate:

One of the signs of hyperthyroidism in men is rapid heartbeat or palpitations. The heart beats more than 100 times per minute in this state. This rise in heart rate lasts throughout the night, which is common with hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism may also manifest as irregular heartbeats or palpitations, which can cause extra stress on the heart.

Weariness, fatigue and anxiety:

As a sign of hyperthyroidism, many men may experience fatigue or physical weakness. Apart from exhaustion, additional symptoms of hyperthyroidism may include heat sensitivity, excessive perspiration, anxiousness, and anxiety. Some may experience insomnia or tremors in their hands and fingers.

Hair that is fine and brittle:

Hair being fine and brittle is one of the thyroid symptoms in males.

Male breast enlargement:

The conversion of the male hormone to the female hormone is boosted as a result of hormonal imbalance in the body. Hyperthyroidism can induce enlargement of the male breast if it remains untreated for a long time.

Eyeball protrusion:

Along with fast weight loss and rapid heartbeats, you may detect facial swelling that can cause eyeball protrusion.

What Is The Best Way To Treat Hyperthyroidism In Men?

Treatment for hyperthyroidism in men is determined by the underlying cause and severity of the ailment and is often either oral medications, surgery, or radioactive iodine treatment.


Affinity Health recommends that you discuss and assess the benefits and drawbacks of each therapy option with your health care professional before making a decision.


Men With Hypothyroidism

Another thyroid condition in men is hypothyroidism. It normally develops over a period of years, but some kinds of hypothyroidism can also develop over a period of weeks.

Symptoms of hypothyroidism in men include:


  • Aches and pain: Muscle pains, discomfort, stiffness, and oedema.


  • High blood cholesterol: An imbalance in the body’s hormonal system causes high blood cholesterol.


  • Puffy face: Hypothyroidism can cause a puffy face and swelling below the eyes in a small percentage of people.


  • Constipation: One of the most prevalent hypothyroidism symptoms in males is constipation.


  • Weight gain: Rapid weight gain is one of the hypothyroidism symptoms in males. Despite making no adjustments to their diet or the amount of food they consume, men acquire weight quickly.


  • Mood: Hypothyroidism symptoms in men may also include decreased memory, slower heart rate, sadness, cold intolerance, excessive tiredness, and memory lapses.

What Causes Hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism can be caused by a variety of factors, including autoimmune illnesses such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, thyroid surgery, radiation therapy, and even some drugs.


Read More: Signs That You May Need to Get Your Thyroid Checked


What is the Best Way to Treat Hypothyroidism In Men?

Oral thyroid hormone replacement is commonly used to treat hypothyroidism. These oral pills contain thyroid hormone, which compensates for thyroid insufficiency. It’s critical that you take your meds exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider, as an overdose can result in hyperthyroidism.


Men’s Thyroid And Sexual Health

Is thyroid disease linked to erectile dysfunction? In short, yes. Men with hyperthyroidism are more likely to be affected, whereas men with hypothyroidism are more likely to have sperm abnormalities. Thyroid disease can influence men’s sexual health and, as a result, their fertility.


If you suspect you have thyroid issues, Affinity Health recommends that you see your doctor for a proper diagnosis as soon as possible. Your doctor may recommend a blood test to confirm the diagnosis and will be able to assist you with the best treatment options.


Affinity Health makes it very easy for you to find out if your desired physician is covered.  Finding your nearest GP is as easy as going to Affinity Health’s website by clicking here.

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading provider of health insurance, offering you a range of options at affordable rates including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of having medical insurance that meets your needs, your budget, and your lifestyle. Our range of healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters the most. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service at all times. For more information, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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