Goiter is caused by abnormalities in thyroid gland. Thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland and it regulates metabolism in the body. If it does not function properly, it may cause thyroid enlargement, in which, the gland enlarges to secrete a high amount of hormone called hyperthyroidism, and in some cases, it produces too little hormone and the condition is called hypothyroidism.
Enlarged goiter can block the passage of trachea and esophagus, and many patients suffering from goiter, it is removed through surgery. But surgery can be prevented if one is aware of the causes of goiter and takes precautions to prevent the disease.
1. Iodine deficiency: Goiter can be caused by iodine deficiency.
2. Immune disorders: Graves' disease is a kind of autoimmune disorder, which causes enlarged goiter.
3. Reduced production of hormone: Hashimoto's disease is a condition, which causes reduced production of thyroid hormones and the gland enlarges to produce more thyroid hormone.
4. Nodular enlargement: Goiter can also be formed by multi-nodular enlargement or single nodule enlargement in the thyroid gland and sometimes, it is caused by thyroid cancer.
5. Pregnancy: Sometimes, the thyroid is enlarged during pregnancy, which is caused by the hormone human chorionic gonadotrophin.
6. Inflammation: In the case of inflammation the gland, enlarges and other symptoms of inflammation are fever and problem in swallowing food.
7. Other: Intake of non-iodized salt, reduced intake of milk products, smoking and parasitic infections.
1. Swelling in neck
3. Difficulty in breathing, swelling, tenderness in neck
4. Loss of concentration, irritability and coughing
Goiter enlargement can be prevented by following some precautions and natural treatments:
1. The patients suffering from goiter should take food rich in iodine. Iodized salt should be taken in diet and food products high in iodine content are garlic, turnip and carrot.
2. Some of the common fruits and vegetables high in iodine content are tomatoes, citrus fruits, lettuce, oats, cucumber, onions, fish, sea food and whole rice. Taking banana everyday helps in curing goiter.
3. Barley is an effective treatment of goiter.
4. Flex seeds boiled in water can be applied on neck.
5. Wartercress is high in iodine and it can be taken by patients suffering from hypothyroidism.
6. Cabbage juice and almonds tea can be taken two to three times in a day.
7. Dandelion is a medicinal plant, which is not only used for digestion but it also effective in treating goiter.
8. Sorrel leaves and olive oil can be mixed together and the paste can be applied on neck.
1. Do not take food or drinks high in chlorine or fluorine.
2. Do not take food high in sugar. Do not take spicy food and beverages such as tea or coffee.
3. Carefully observing the symptoms and regular exercising is very important. The patient should do neck stretching exercises and aerobics.
4. Cool shower in early morning and also before going to bed is also helpful in regulating iodine secretion.
5. Taking small meals five to six times in a day prevents malfunctioning of thyroids gland.