Dallas BHRT and Pellet Therapy For Perimenopause
Dallas BHRT and Pellet Therapy For Menopause
In the years leading up to menopause (perimenopause), menstrual cycles that may once have been like clockwork start to become erratic. Bleeding may be heavier or lighter than usual-although we are not officially in menopause until we have had 12 consecutive months without a period. Erratic cycles are a sign of erratic ovulation leading to highs and lows in estrogen and progesterone, an effect many women describe as an emotional roller coaster.
And don’t let anyone tell you it’s all in your head. When the ovaries begin to sputter, hormone production sputters and so do we…forgetfulness and foggy thinking, mental confusion and mood swings are hallmark symptoms for many women; as are hot flashes and night sweats, tearfulness, unwanted weight gain, thyroid problems and declining interest in sex, no matter how much we love our partner. Of course not all women experience these symptoms. As individuals we each have our very own biochemistry-but it is common to experience some degree of discomfort during the menopausal years. And the degree to which we experience discomfort is likely to be associated with the degree to which our hormones are out of balance.
If you are a woman experiencing menopausal symptoms, you will want to test at least two hormones: estradiol and progesterone. If you would like a more comprehensive picture, our five panel test measures estradiol, progesterone, testosterone, DHEAs and morning cortisol.
The Anatomy of a Hot Flash
Is it hot in here or is it just me? – is a common refrain among the estimated 50 to 75 percent of women in the U.S. who experience hot flashes during menopause. Hot flashes can be very mild, or bad enough to have you opening every window in the house, even in the dead of winter. Also known as “vasomotor flushing,” the hot flash occurs when the blood vessels in the skin of the head and neck open more widely than usual, allowing more blood to shift into the area, creating the heat and redness. Perspiration is also common to the phenomena and in some women the hot flash takes the form of a night sweat, followed by a chill that has one groping for the covers kicked to the floor just minutes earlier. It’s usually over in seconds, and there’s no telling when it will recur-maybe minutes, maybe hours but it will be back. Triggered by falling estrogen and rising levels of follicle stimulating hormone, hot flashes arrive unannounced, and usually at a most inconvenient time-in the middle of a job interview, in the middle of an important speech, in the middle of the night.
Besides hormonal changes, anxiety and tension magnify hot flashes and many women find that hot drinks and wine do the same.
Saliva testing identifies the degree to which the specific hormones linked to hot flashes are out-of-whack. Using test results as a guide line, natural hormone supplements can be prescribed to restore balance and cool the hot flashes. Many women also use phyto(plant)
estrogens, such as Dong Quai and Black Cohosh; optimal nutrition and relaxation exercises for added relief. In most cases, hot flashes usually go away a year or two after actual menopause and the cessation of menses.
Low Sex Drive (Libido) and Hormone Imbalance
Estrogen, progesterone and testosterone are key players in the maintenance of circulation, nerve transmission and cell division, so an imbalance of these hormones can easily lead to changes in sexual response. Declining estrogen levels common to the menopausal
years can dampen nerve impulses during sex, making us less sensitive to vibration and touch. And since estrogens increase blood flow to sexually sensitive areas, decreased levels can slow or diminish the arousal response. Imbalances of estrogen and testosterone can cause dryness and thinning of vaginal tissue making intercourse uncomfortable or downright painful an effect that does absolutely nothing for libido.
Key to a normal sex drive is the right balance of estrogen to progesterone. An excess blocks thyroid function which inhibits libido. A balance stabilizes mood and supports thyroid function which enhances libido. Significantly, progesterone is also a precursor to estrogen and testosterone so we need it in steady supply for optimal sexual pleasure.
Testosterone and DHEA also have a major impact on sex drive. Levels gradually decline in the years leading to menopause and can drop dramatically with hysterectomy, chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. If you have a low libido and have lost interest in sex, saliva testing to measure levels of estradiol, progesterone, testosterone and DHEA-s can establish probable cause and a rationale for correcting the imbalance.
All About Natural (Bio-identical) Hormones
Natural or “bio-identical” hormones (BHRT) are synthesized from natural plant substances to be identical in structure and function to those our bodies produced naturally before menopause. When hormone production starts to drop below normal levels in the years
leading up to menopause, natural hormones are the best and safest way for women to supplement. They are available through your doctor by prescription and tailormade to meet individual need by a compounding pharmacist. Some natural hormones are available
over-the-counter but it is always wise to do research first. Consult Dr. John Lee’s books on premenopause and menopause for an approved list of creams.
Please note: Progesterone, not progestin, is the natural bio-identical form of the hormone as opposed to progestin, the synthetic version (the “pro” in Prempro). Natural progesterone is just like the progesterone your ovaries make; it is available in a topical cream, over-the counter, and by prescription when compounded with natural estrogens and other hormones by compounding pharmacists.
When hormone balance is restored and maintained using natural bio-identical hormones, there are far fewer side effects, symptoms and cancers as observed with synthetic HRT. Following natural physiology as closely as possible makes sense, because in a sense, natural hormones have undergone safety trials as long as humans have walked the earth.
With our BHRT and pellet therapy treatments in Dallas and Southlake, we can help restore your natural hormone balance with plant-based, natural bio-identical hormones which can improve several common symptoms of hormonal imbalance associated with peri-menopause and menopause.
Call 888-210-9693 for your evaluation for hormone imbalance and to explore your hormone optimization treatment options in Dallas and Southlake.