The thyroid gland is responsible for several bodily processes, especially metabolism and development. It also plays a role in heart rate, body temperature, breathing, fertility, digestion, and more. Sometimes, the thyroid can become overactive or underactive, and either end of the spectrum can affect your overall health (via

The American Thyroid Association recommends getting your thyroid checked beginning at age 35 and, if results fall within normal guidelines, every five years after. Women are more susceptible to thyroid disease than men, but it can still be a good idea for men to take part in regular thyroid screening when they're in their 30s.

Luckily, a routine thyroid test is nothing more than a blood test that checks the amount of thyroid hormones in the body. If you're experiencing rapid weight loss or gain, having trouble regulating your body temperature, or are seeing changes in your heart rate, consider talking to your doctor about thyroid screening (per Cleveland Clinic).

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