Thyroid disorders can range from a small, harmless goiter (enlarged gland) that needs no treatment to life-threatening cancer. The most common thyroid problems involve abnormal production of thyroid hormones. Too much thyroid hormone results in a condition known as hyperthyroidism. Insufficient hormone production leads to hypothyroidism.
Although the effects can be unpleasant or uncomfortable, most thyroid problems can be managed well if properly diagnosed and treated.
For thyroid disorders stemming from the over- or under-production of thyroid hormones, you want to try to restore the hormone levels to their proper balance. Hyperthyroidism needs treatment that will slow down the making of thyroid hormone, while hypothyroidism needs hormone replacement.
Drugs and surgery are usually effective ways to adjust hormone levels. Other treatments, including diet supplements, herbal remedies, and special exercises, may relieve some of the discomforts and help the thyroid gland work better.