Common Hormonal Imbalance in Women and Their Treatment
Hormones are known as our body’s chemical messengers produced in the endocrine glands. These powerful chemical messengers tell tissues and organs what are their functions. They assist in controlling many of our body’s major processes including metabolism and reproduction. A hormonal imbalance denotes the condition of too much or too little of a certain hormone. As hormones are essential for our overall wellbeing, having hormonal imbalance can affect our body system and create many health issues because hormones can affect everything from fertility to mood to metabolism.
Hormonal Imbalance in Female:
Hormonal imbalance and related health issues are very common nowadays in female. One of the key body systems affected by hormonal imbalance in female is the reproductive system. Woman naturally experience hormonal imbalance thorough different periods of their life including:
- Pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding
- Premenopause, menopause, and postmenopause
Having hormonal imbalance during these four periods of life of a woman are normal. What is abnormal will be discussed now. Women are also at risk of development hormonal imbalance related disorder than men.
The most common health issues observed in female due to hormonal imbalance are irregular or heavy periods, PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) infertility and endometriosis. Besides, most of us are familiar with the term Hypothyroidism or thyroid disorder due to abnormal level of Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH). These issues are increasing day by day in female. Modern stressful and unhealthy eating habit can trigger this hormonal imbalance even more.
There are multiple symptoms of developing hormonal imbalance in female have been observed such as:
- Heavy, irregular or painful periods
- Osteoporosis (weak bones)
- Pain, stiffness, swelling in joints.
- Breast tenderness
- Acne during or just before menstruation
- Vaginal dryness
- Uterine bleeding not associated with menstruation
- Constipation and diarrhea
- Increased hair growth on face, neck, chest or back
- Weight gain or trouble losing weight
- Thinning hair or hair loss
- Skin tags or abnormal growths
- Deepening of the voice
- Clitoral (erectile part of female genitals) enlargement
- Pain during sex
- Depression or mood swings
Causes of Female Hormonal Imbalance:
Our body has a very delicate chemistry. Changes in chemistry can easily trigger several health problems. Similarly, over or less presence of hormones in a female body can nurture with her body system and create several health hazards. Many causes of hormonal imbalance in women are related to reproductive hormones. An imbalance in hormone levels especially in female can be caused by following factors.
- High stress
- Insufficient sleep
- Unhealthy diet
- Thyroid problems
- Medical condition like PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), ovarian cancer.
- Hormone drugs like birth control pills
- Primary ovarian insufficiency
Diagnosis of Hormonal Imbalance:
Depending on the above mentioned symptoms a doctor may suggest one or more diagnostic tests such as:
- Blood Test:
Most hormones can be detected in the blood. A doctor can use a blood test to check thyroid, a doctor can use blood test to check thyroid, estrogen and other hormone levels.
- Pap Smear:
Especially for female this test is recommended by doctor to check unusual lumps, cysts, tumors in their breast or ovary and uterus which can trigger the hormonal imbalance.
An ultrasound machine uses sound waves to look inside your body; doctors may use an ultrasound to get images of uterus, ovaries, thyroid or pituitary gland. Sometimes other advanced tests are required include thyroid scan, MRI, biopsy etc.
Treatment for Hormonal Imbalance in Female:
A hormonal imbalance is a frustrating and difficult experience for women but there are various types of treatments and medications. Having one of the above mentioned symptoms, one should consult a physician and take advices as soon as possible. Several treatments including natural therapies, medication, lifestyle changes may be successful in addressing hormonal imbalance. Let’s find out.
- Hormone control or birth control medicines: Many doctors suggest such type of medications which contain forms of estrogen or progesterone can help regulate irregular menstrual cycles.
- Vaginal estrogen tablets or cream: to reduce vaginal dryness.
- Hormone Replacement Medication
- Eflornithine (vaniqa): in the form of cream to reduce facial hair growth
- Clomiphene and letrozole: these medicines help women with PCOS trying to get pregnant; these medicines stimulate the ovulation process.
- Assisted Reproductive Technology
- Natural remedies including Ayurvedic medications and therapy
- Maintaining a healthy body weight
- Leading a healthy and stress free life, going for stress management.
- Practicing Yoga, regular exercise
There are more, hormonal imbalance can be treated and can cause less harm if treated early.