Adrenal gland problems occur when there is the production of too many or few hormones by the adrenal glands. The hormones produced perform many functions such as human development, metabolism, regulating blood pressure, and fight to flight response in the body. Improper functioning of the adrenal glands can lead to a wide variety of symptoms and the best solution is adrenalectomy. Here are some signs of adrenal gland problems:
High Blood Pressure
When there is a tumor in the adrenal gland, it produces too many hormones noradrenaline and adrenaline which can cause the blood pressure to rise. These hormones trigger your body to fight to flight response to a possible threat. In return your heartbeat becomes fast and also blood pressure rises. Too much production of the hormone aldosterone in the adrenal glands reduces the amount of potassium in the blood and hence a rise in blood pressure.
Over-production of hormones can also cause an unregulated amount of water and salt in the bloodstream. It can either be long-term or short-term. The tumor is usually non-cancerous and occurs between the age of 20 and 50. If not treated the tumor can cause severe damages to other blood systems.
Hormones found in the adrenal glands are responsible for controlling appetite and processing of food. If they are overproduced or underproduced, they prevent your body from picking the necessary nutrients for absorption and use. In particular, the hormone cortisol is linked to weight fluctuation. Both deficiency and excess cortisol impact blood sugar levels and thyroid functions.
When the cortisol drops it is referred to as adrenaline exhaustion. The blood sugar levels decrease causing hypoglycemia which is associated with low-stress tolerance and weight loss. Low and high cortisol can trigger other symptoms such as depression, poor concentration, and feeling fatigued. Cortisol levels also facilitate the production of thyroid glands. Improper functioning of the thyroid hormone can lead to unexpected weight loss.
A lack of a proper amount of hormones in the adrenal glands can cause general muscle weakness and fatigue. Adrenal fatigue is characterized by feeling sluggish and body weakness. The adrenal glands are supposed to release hormones such as epinephrine and dehydroepiandrosterone ( DHEA) and cortisone which help the body to function properly.
Stress and illness overstimulate the pituitary and adrenal glands, making them weak and worn out. The body feels the impact in a big way because the hormones are not produced at the proper levels. You end up feeling tired both physically and mentally even after performing simple tasks. You may feel fatigued after a long rest or sleep. Adrenal fatigue can cause obesity due to the high levels of cortisol hormone.
You may experience skin darkening especially in the areas exposed to direct sunlight. The darkening is usually more in parts like armpits, palms, knuckles, knees, nipples, soles, and areas with folding skin. Another skin condition is the appearance of black freckles on the forehead, shoulders, and face. When the body is stressed, the pituitary glands produce hormones that regulate the adrenal glands.
The hormone adrenocorticotropic (ACTH) is produced to tell the adrenal glands to respond by producing cortisol hormone. The pituitary glands overcompensate by making ACTH and melanocytes stimulating hormone (MSH). Higher production of MSH leads to overstimulation of melanocytes, the melanin-producing cells that provide color to the skin. The overproduction of melanocytes will lead to a person having a darker complexion than they were.