Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women
Grand Rapids Bioidentical Hormones Doctor, Steve R. Lasater, M.D. at Optimal Wellness Medical Group has helped many women to improve the symptoms of menopause with Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy. Menopause is a condition that affects all women as they enter the period between age 40 and 55. Premature menopause, prompted by hysterectomy or ovarian damage from chemotherapy, may occur prior to age 40. In either case, hormone changes prompt the gradual or abrupt cessation of one’s menstrual period, marking the end of a woman’s reproductive phase. While this change is for many women a bittersweet milestone, it can also deliver an onslaught of unpleasant symptoms, many of which increase stress in one’s daily life.
As if that wasn’t enough, many women continue to feel miserable with post-menopausal symptoms. It’s no wonder that women everywhere are demanding a better, more natural treatment that helps them live as comfortable as possible. For many, Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) offers relief that prescription medications from their doctor just can’t match. These bioidentical hormones, which replicate what your body once produced, can bring welcome relief for menopausal women. Some of the most common conditions it treats are highlighted below.
Hot Flashes, Night Sweats, and Cold Sensations
The hormonal changes associated with menopause cause up to 75 percent of women to experience hot flashes. A hot flash is a sudden sensation of heat that most women experience on the upper body. It usually involves an increased heart rate as well. While hot flashes occur during waking hours, night sweats make it difficult to get restful sleep because they cause you to wake up sweating profusely. You may also need to get up to change your damp sheets.
Cold sensations are an effect of menopause that aren’t as common and therefore don’t receive as much attention. Some women experience this due to poor circulation brought on by changing hormone levels. The most common complaints are freezing cold feet and hands, although the chill can also reach the face. Some women shiver uncontrollably while going through a cold spell and no amount of blankets or warm socks can help.
If you thought you were a weepy, irritable, hormonal mess before your monthly cycles, this problem may become even worse when you go through menopause. Your hormones are changing rapidly, which often means taking your emotions along for the ride. People who you dearly love get on your nerves and you find yourself snapping at them for no particular reason. You may also find yourself crying frequently and not understanding why.
If you have always considered yourself level-headed despite occasional problems with premenstrual syndrome, this emotional rollercoaster may come as a shock. It feels like your life is spiraling out of control and there is nothing you can do to stop it. Such helpless feelings often lead to depression.
Lack of Sexual Libido
Women going through menopause are not the only ones who suffer from its effects. Rapidly changing moods and the lack of desire for sexual intimacy can also have negative consequences for your marriage or other close relationship. Your partner feels that you have changed and may resent you for it, even as you try to explain that the changes are outside of your control your body eventually halts production of estrogen completely and decreases the production of other hormones, it may feel like you’re never in the mood for sex.
Bioidentical Hormones Used to Treat Menopausal Symptoms
Traditional hormone replacement therapy utilizes synthetic hormones to attempt to replace what your body has lost due to menopause. This typically involves only estrogen, although some doctors use a combination of estrogen and progesterone. Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy specialists, on the other hand, use a combination of six different bioidentical hormones. These include:
- Estrone: This is a weaker form of estrogen, but it has a major effect on the accumulation of belly fat. Many women who are struggling with stubborn fat stores lose weight easier after receiving estrone as part of a Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy.
- Estriol: Your liver produces this form of estrogen. The lack of it can cause problems with dry skin and urinary tract infections.
- Estradiol: This is the major form of estrogen produced by your ovaries, which means that the lack of it causes the majority of troublesome symptoms.
- Progesterone: Your body naturally releases progesterone in the second half of your menstrual cycle. It is also responsible for helping to sustain a pregnancy. Once you are beyond your childbearing years, having too little progesterone can result in heavy bleeding, irregular bleeding, and polycystic ovary syndrome.
- Testosterone: Although primarily a male hormone, testosterone is present in smaller amounts in women. Lack of testosterone balance affects energy levels, sexual desire, and the overall sense of well-being.
- Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA): This hormone is produced by the brain and helps to create sex hormones in both genders. Balancing the level of DHEA in your body helps fight depression, obesity, and osteoporosis.
To learn more about obtaining a customized Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy program, contact Grand Rapids Bioidentical Hormones Doctor, Steve R. Lasater, M.D. at Optimal Wellness Medical Group to schedule a consultation!