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10 Risk Factors Of Hypothyroidism

By: Tanushree Kulkarni

Did you know that Hypothyroidism is the most common type of a thyroid disorder in India?

According to a report, one out of every ten people is suffering from issues related to thyroid. But, let us first understand what is hypothyroidism?

Also Read: This Magical Oil Treats Hypothyroidism

The thyroid is a gland that is responsible for metabolic processes in our body. The common problems occurring in a thyroid gland can either happen due to excess production of thyroid hormones (known as hyperthyroidism) or an insufficient hormone production leading to hypothyroidism.

According to an estimate in India, most complications are related to Hypothyroidism; and out of that, it has been found that majority of them occur in women.

Yes, that’s right. Women are 10 times more likely to suffer from hypothyroidism than men. And the majority of the women patients are older than 34 years of age.

Also Read: 7 Natural Ways To Treat Hypothyroidism

Today, we at Boldsky will discuss the risk factors related to hypothyroidism. Family history, personal history, smoking, exposure to radiation in upper body and Hashimoto’s disease are some of the main factors causing hypothyroidism.

Let us now look in detail at these 10 risk factors that can lead to hypothyroidism.


Genetic Reasons

Genetics is also one of risk factors for hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. A person having a family history of hypothyroidism is at greater risk of contracting hypothyroidism. A person suffering from hypothyroidism may have contracted it from parents who are healthy, but their grandparents might be suffering from this ailment.



Smoking is one of the major factors causing hypothyroidism. According to studies, smokers have greater chances of getting hypothyroid problems such as problems relating to the arteries and heart.



Pregnancy is one of the high-risk factors causing hypothyroidism in women. Women are more at risk of getting hypothyroidism during and after pregnancy. Changes in hormone levels during pregnancy changes the thyroid hormone level, which may lead to hypothyroidism. This hormone-related problem occurs only in 10 per cent of the women and mostly gets cured, but there is also a chance of contracting permanent hypothyroidism.


Treatment Of Hyperthyroidism

Sometimes, patients who undergo treatment of hyperthyroidism are also at the risk of contracting hypothyroidism. In the treatment of hyperthyroidism, the thyroid glands are treated with radioactive iodine or antithyroid medications that cause hypothyroidism.


Thyroid Gland Removal

In cases such as thyroid cancer, it becomes essential to partially or entirely remove the thyroid, which becomes a risk factor for hypothyroidism.



Medications such as sulphonamides and lithium taken for psychiatric disorders and diabetes result in a less production of thyroid hormones, which may in turn cause hypothyroidism.


Diabetes Or Rheumatoid Arthritis

Those suffering from type 1 diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis are at a greater risk of contracting hypothyroidism. These diseases become a major risk factor for hypothyroidism.


Hashimoto's Disease

Hashimoto's diseases is a situation in which the body's own immune system starts acting against the body. In this disease, the body's immune system attacks thyroid, which affects the thyroid gland's ability to successfully produce thyroid hormones, thereby resulting in the condition called hypothyroidism.


Iodine Deficiency

Iodine deficiency is one of the risk factors for hypothyroidism. Our body doesn't produce iodine, so including iodine in our diet becomes necessary to keep ailments at bay. Deficiency of iodine in our body can result in Goitre. It can also result in a misbalance of the thyroid hormone, leading to hypothyroidism.


Pituitary Gland Problem

In some rare cases, problems in the pituitary gland can also lead to hypothyroidism. Pituitary gland, the gland which controls thyroid, may contract problems such as a tumour, which affects its ability to produce hormones that help in stimulating the thyroid.

Story first published: Tuesday, April 26, 2016, 20:30 [IST]
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