January not only signifies the beginning of the New Year but it’s also Thyroid Awareness Month. You may already be well acquainted with the small but powerful gland known as the thyroid. However, much of the populace is unfamiliar with the significant impact that it has on overall health and bodily function.
There are numerous methods of increasing your personal knowledge and awareness of the thyroid, such as reading an informative web article, but many are unsure how to promote and support thyroid awareness among others.
Engaging in actions such as sharing personal experiences, spreading legitimate information from reliable sources, supporting thyroid-related charities, and joining online and offline communities are excellent ways to improve thyroid awareness.
Strengthening through Sharing
Thyroid patients regularly suffer from symptoms such as fatigue, difficulty maintaining a healthy weight, inability to think clearly, bouts of depression, and other frustrating symptoms – you can read a full list of thyroid symptoms here. More often than not, doctors regularly overlook the presence of a thyroid condition and either discount or misdiagnose symptoms indicative of thyroid dysfunction.
According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 750 million people have some degree of thyroid disease. Furthermore, the American Thyroid Association states that up to 60% of these cases are undiagnosed. For those who are fortunate enough to have been diagnosed, or recognize that their thyroid is malfunctioning, they have an opportunity to share their experience and knowledge with others.
Because the thyroid is not widely understood, many people have difficulty recognizing that they are suffering from thyroid-related symptoms. Sharing your successes, struggles, and overall experiences with thyroid dysfunction or disease can provide a moment of revelation for others.
Many people have turned to blogging, video production, or other social media outlets to present the problems and challenges they face on a daily basis. By sharing personal experiences and acquired knowledge, you can help others better understand and recognize the impact of thyroid disease. These stories often inform others of what to avoid, what to pursue, and what resources are available to support their journey to better thyroid health.
Informing Your Circle
Ignorance of thyroid disease is common. Fortunately, this can be changed through engaging with your friends, family, and social network.
Information on thyroid health and wellness is readily available from many reputable online sources. Sharing information to your network from well-respected and vetted sources can improve awareness.
Some reliable and informative thyroid outlets include:
Supplying thoughtful, accurate, and informational resources for supporting thyroid health isn’t only beneficial to those in your social group, but also those connected to members in their circles! The power of online and social sharing can cause your informational article to create a ripple of awareness and better thyroid understanding.
Activating your social network with informative and engaging content such as the advocacy project “Sick to Death” by Maggie Hadleigh-West can also be a powerful tool for raising thyroid awareness. The film promises to provide an intimate look into the director’s experience and journey with thyroid disease. By looking at the various issues of poor diagnosis, improper treatment, and business-oriented motivations, “Sick to Death” is expected to expose the challenges and problems connected to living with a thyroid condition. Exposing others to the information exhibited in this project can inform people while promoting action.
Supporting Thyroid Groups and Charities
Acting alone is not the only way to promote thyroid awareness. There are many charities, groups, and communities that contribute significantly to the cause of greater thyroid awareness, health, and treatment. Getting involved with such groups can improve their ability to serve the thyroid community while also improving your knowledge and ability to do the same.
ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association, Inc. is a group dedicated to improving thyroid literacy, engaging communities, facilitating effective communication between doctors, patients, and the general public, and support research of thyroid cancer.
Their website contains a wealth of resources to support those with thyroid cancer, who have survived thyroid cancer or are interested in gaining more knowledge to raise awareness. There are many ways to support their cause including donating and volunteering. Additional resources and suggestions for raising awareness can be found here.
Some thyroid supporting programs such as the Graves’ Disease & Thyroid Foundation have partnered with Amazon Smile. This program donates 0.5% of all your purchases done through Amazon Smile to your charity of choice. If you are a regular user of Amazon.com, all you have to do is sign in with Amazon Smile and decide which thyroid charity you want to benefit. There are no additional fees or strings attached. Simply continue to shop as you normally would and Amazon will allocate 0.5% of your total purchase to your charity of choice.
Get Involved in the Thyroid Community
Thyroid disease is prolific. Many do not appreciate the far-reaching impact of the thyroid. Fortunately, communities have begun to form that provide exceptional and unique support for those with thyroid issues or those interested in raising thyroid awareness.
Online communities such as Thyroidhug and Stopthethyroidmadness were created with the intent of bringing thyroid patients together to share their experiences, insights, and research. Introducing yourself and others to thyroid communities can help equip people with the knowledge and understanding they need to better support widespread thyroid health.
Whether it be a personal encounter with thyroid disease, a friend or family member, or a particularly insightful discussion with an expert, there are many different resources to be utilized in these communities. However, it is important to be aware that even though the information provided by these groups can be beneficial and greatly support thyroid awareness, it is based on anecdotal accounts and should not be the sole factor in medical or health decisions.
Join the Fight Against Thyroid Ignorance
There is a significant need for greater thyroid awareness and knowledgeability in the world. Fortunately, there are many ways for individuals to take action and support the spread of thyroid literacy!
Sharing personal experiences or interactions with thyroid disease is a powerful method of raising awareness. Proliferating information that is well-respected and appropriately sourced can extend the reach of thyroid awareness.
Bolstering the ranks of other groups and charities who are already moving to support thyroid awareness is another effective way to individually fight against thyroid ignorance on a larger scale. However, joining the thyroid community and welcoming others to do the same is perhaps the best way of spreading long-term understanding and knowledge of the thyroid.
Do your part in supporting thyroid awareness this January by presenting your experiences, activating your network, supporting charities, and becoming a member of the growing thyroid community.