It is estimated that over 20 million Americans have been diagnosed with some form of thyroid disease, while another 8 million probably live with thyroid disease that has not yet been detected. I am particularly alert to information about thyroid health because many of my immediate family members have been diagnosed with thyroid problems and I too became gravely ill with hyperactive thyroid back in 2006. I was one of the lucky ones. The problem was detected quickly and a successful acupuncture treatment with Dr. Nemeh in Westlake put me back into a healthy balance without drugs or surgery.
Recently I received an email from my friend Ann South, who is a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine that made me shake in disbelief. Please read Ann’s words below and speak up when you have the chance to protect your precious thyroid gland.
Dr. Ann’s email said:
“Dr. Oz had a show on the fastest growing cancer in women, thyroid cancer. It was a very interesting program and he mentioned that the increase could possibly be related to the use of dental x-rays and mammograms. He demonstrated that on the apron the dentist puts on you for your dental x-rays there is a little flap that can be lifted up and wrapped around your neck. Many dentists don’t bother to use it. Also, there is something called a “thyroid guard” for use during mammograms. By coincidence, I had my yearly mammogram yesterday. I felt a little silly, but I asked about the guard and sure enough, the technician had one in a drawer. I asked why it wasn’t routinely used. Answer: “I don’t know. You have to ask for it.” Well, if I hadn’t seen the show, how would I have known to ask?
I am due for both dental xrays and a mammogram this year and guess what I am going to ask for? Please ask about it too. If they have a way to protect us and especially our young daughters, why are we just learning about this instead of having it as standard practice?
Update 4/06/11 – I have just returned from a scheduled follow-up mammogram at Cleveland Clinic Strongsville, and have good news. When I asked for the thyroid shield, it was graciously provided. The technician was familiar with the shield and admitted to getting more requests for it these days. Hurray!p>