The thyroid is a gland located in the neck and produces, stores and releases hormones. The body depends on these hormones to regulate every day functions. Each person's metabolism, or the way in which we get energy from nutrients, relies on the hormones released by the thyroid to perform at a normal rate (Mayo Clinic website). If the thyroid does not generate enough hormones hypothyroidism, also known as underachieve thyroid, occurs.
As a consequence, the patient might show symptoms of extreme tiredness, depression, hair loss, mood swings and sensitivity to cold temperatures. These symptoms can be treated with medication to supplement the lack of natural hormone production. There is scientific evidence that thyroid disorders can be hereditary (Journal of Thyroid Disorders & Therapy).
The importance in having normal thyroid levels is so vital that all babies in the United States get tested for thyroid disorders at the time of birth. As an adult, thyroid levels should be tested on a yearly basis or sooner if symptoms appear.