Important Information About Hypothalamus Disorders
Hypothalamus disorders come from a very small cone-shaped area in your brain that has the important job of being in control of various metabolic processes in your body. The master gland, also sometimes referred to as the pituitary gland regulates the many important functions of the adrenal and thyroid glands. When this part of your brain is not functioning the way that it should, the result is an array of hypothalamus disorders.
The hypothalamus plays a huge role in ensuring that your body functions normal. It is also responsible for regulating important mechanisms such as sleep, thirst and hunger, which are essential to your overall well-being. Additionally, it links your body and mind together, processing sensory impulses, regulating endocrine hormonal levels and controlling body metabolism. The hypothalamus controls your emotional center, conducting feelings of sorrow, joy, anger and exhilaration.
Also, the nerve cells in the area produce all of the hormones that stimulate or suppress secretions from the master gland in your brain. This controls feelings of creativity, hunger and satisfaction and regulates food-water intake as well as sleep-wake cycles. It is suggested that your hypothalamus can take up to 20 minutes after eating to send a full or satisfied feeling. This is why, generally if you wait 20 minutes before deciding on a second helping of food, you will realize that you are full. People that are overweight are recommended to eat as slow as possible so that these messages have time to register.
Causes Of Hypothalamus Disorders
- Anorexia – Individuals with this eating disorder eat a very small amount of food in comparison to what their body actually needs. People with anorexia adopt extreme measures to become and remain extremely thin. Malnourishment of this level deprives the body of vital nutrients and can cause hypothalamus disorders.
- Malnutrition – If you are not consuming healthy choices of food in your diet, your body is not receiving the vitamins and nutrients that it needs.
- Trauma – A head injury is often responsible for these disorders due to bleeding that is caused by an external force.
- Tumors – Although, this cause is not as common as the others, hypothalamus disorders can be caused by the growth of a tumor in that area of the brain. The tumor essentially decreases the flow of blood to the hypothalamus.
- Altered Body Temperature – The hypothalamus is responsible for controlling your body temperature. Fluctuations in body temperature for no reason is one of the most common symptoms.
- Adrenal Dysfunction – Hypothalamus disorders will often lower how efficient the pituitary glands function. This leads to overall weakness which can ultimately result in vertigo.
- Headaches – Frequent episodes of mild to severe headaches are caused by brain tumors that grow either in or close to the hypothalamus.
- Hypothyroidism – The negative impact that the pituitary glands experience will travel to the thyroid glands as well. These glands will no longer be able to produce a sufficient amount of hormones. Hypothyroidism can cause fatigue, constipation, body hair loss, weight gain, impotence, hoarse voice and menstrual cycle disturbances.
- Other Symptoms – Some individuals with hypothalamus disorders will be unable to control urination, emotional and obesity disturbances and excessive thirst.
To treat these disorders, the underlying cause needs to be determined first. While someone with anorexia may be easier to analyze, if a tumor is behind the dysfunction, it would require an assortment of tests.
Eating a healthy, will balanced diet is very important to avoid becoming malnourished. Keep in mind that just because you are eating several meals a day does not mean that you are providing your body with proper vitamins and nutrients that it needs to function properly.