Your thyroid is in the front of your neck. It's a small gland that secretes a hormone that allows your other glands to do their job (pituitary, spleen, liver, etc.) The thyroidcan truly affect every function in your body. I'm assuming your niece had hypothyroid, which means hers was not making enough hormone. (that's my problem too) It can cause weight gain, slower metabolism, and makes you feel cold often, sleepy and slows your body down. I felt like I was in slow motion and I was tired all the time with no energy. Without the hormone, you can actually die, although it would take a long time. Too much hormone and your heart races, sweat a lot, get dizzy and out of breath, can't sleep, etc. Once I got on meds, I felt fine and normal, although my metabolism never has been the same. It's also a med that you MUST be on while pregnant, because without it the baby can have learning disabilities, low birth weight, etc.
at 12:56 PM on Jan. 13, 2010