Do you find it impossible to sleep at night but feel drowsy during the day? Have you noticed a drastic drop in your libido? These and several other signs and symptoms of imbalanced hormone levels can be improved by hormone therapy. At Advanced Anti Aging & Weight Loss in Evansville, IN, our mission is to help each of our clients improve their quality of life through the safest, most effective treatment methods. Today, we reveal nine key benefits of bioidentical hormone therapy to help you determine if it can improve your quality of life.
What Is Bioidentical Hormone Therapy?
Bioidentical hormone therapy, also known as BHT or natural hormone therapy, is the safest, most advanced form of hormone replacement therapy (HT). It is commonly used in the form of progesterone and estrogen to ease the symptoms of pre-menopause, menopause and peri-menopause. However, there are several other applications of this type of therapy, including testosterone replacement therapy. Testosterone replacement therapy may be used to treat menopausal symptoms or symptoms of hormonal imbalance in men.
What Are Bioidentical Hormones?
“Bioidentical hormones” refers to hormones which are chemically identical to those produced by the body. While they are created in a laboratory, they exactly mimic the hormones your body naturally produces. Your body cannot tell the difference between bioidentical hormones and the hormones it produces itself. Bioidentical hormones can come from any number of sources, including from plant and animal products. Included in bioidentical hormones are:
- Micronized progesterone USP, including Prochieve and Prometrium
- Estradiol hemihydrate, including Vagifem
- Estradiol acetate, such as Femring
- 17 beta-estradiols, including Estring, Estradil and Estrace
Large pharmaceutical companies produce specific bioidentical hormones. These are regulated by the FDA (United States Food and Drug Administration). Contrastingly, compounding pharmacies mix their own formulas of bioidentical hormones. These special formulas of bioidentical hormones are not regulated by the FDA.
What Are Synthetic Hormones?
In the early days of hormone replacement therapy, synthetic hormones were created in a laboratory; but they were chemically different from the hormones produced by the body. Their molecular structure was also different from naturally produced hormones. As a result, the body reacted to the “unnatural” or “foreign” hormones. For example, Premarin used to be a common estrogen replacement. Made, in part, from urine from pregnant horses, it bound too tightly to human estrogen receptors, making them hyperreactive.
Research proved that this type of replacement therapy increased the risk of cancer when taken for an extended period of time. Unfortunately, some women never stop having peri-menopause symptoms and receive hormone replacement therapy for life.
9 Key Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
1. Reduced Fatigue
Any number of things can cause fatigue. These include heat exhaustion, dehydration, inadequate nutrition, insomnia and low testosterone. If you practice good sleep hygiene, have your stress under control and limit your exposure to blue light 30 minutes before bed, you may have imbalanced hormones if you are still tired during the day. Depending on your hormone levels, you may benefit from supplementing testosterone, progesterone, estrogen or a combination of these hormones.
2. Restored Libido
Reduced libido is one of the most common signs of imbalanced hormones. In men, this may include difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection, a reduced interest in sex and difficulty achieving ejaculation. In women, vaginal atrophy, or the drying and shrinking of the vagina, is the most common physical symptom. Women may also experience difficulty reaching climax, discomfort or pain during sex and a drastically lowered libido.
Determining which low hormone level is responsible for your sexual symptoms is essential. Low testosterone most often accounts for all symptoms in men. In women, a lowered libido may be caused by low testosterone. However, signs of hormonal imbalance, like vaginal atrophy, may also be caused by low estrogen. When you come in for your consultation, we will test your blood to determine which hormone levels are low so we can get you on the right treatment plan and help you restore your sex life.
3. Less Hair Thinning
If your scalp balding and hair thinning is caused by a hormonal imbalance rather than genetics or medication, hormone replacement therapy can help. A combination of progestin and estrogen is extremely effective for the treatment of hair loss. This most often comes in the form of creams, pills or patches. If you suffer from androgenetic alopecia, you may also benefit from a topical hormone replacement in the form of shampoo.
4. Improved Temperature Regulation
One of the most common signs of imbalanced hormones is poor temperature regulation. This often comes in the form of hot flashes and nighttime sweating. While hot flashes and nighttime sweating are most commonly known as signs of menopause, they can affect men as well.
For men, bioidentical hormone replacement in the form of a pill or skin patch is most effective for treating night sweats and hot flashes. For women, hormone replacement therapy is typically delivered in the form of a vaginal cream, gel or spray to treat vaginal discomfort, burning, itching or dryness as well as poor temperature regulation.
5. Improved Sleep
Whether you struggle to fall asleep due to hot flashes, can’t stay asleep due to night sweats or you suffer from general insomnia, hormone replacement therapy can help you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, spend more time in the deepest phase of your sleep cycle and wake up feeling refreshed.
If you do not suffer from imbalanced hormones, try practicing good sleep hygiene to help you sleep at night. Don’t eat spicy foods right before bed, as this can cause night sweats. Make sure your bedroom is well-ventilated and keep it cool. You should also try to wear loose-fitting pajamas made from natural fibers such as cotton.
6. Enhanced Cognition
Testosterone, progesterone and estrogen all play a critical role in cognitive performance. If one or several of these hormones are imbalanced, you may notice some of the following symptoms:
- Difficulty forming new memories
- Poor spatial reasoning
- Difficulty planning
- Forgetting names
- Forgetting important dates
- Forgetting where you put your keys
- Difficulty holding a conversation
- Difficulty remembering a sequence of events
Keep in mind, these are just a few symptoms of impaired cognition caused by low levels of testosterone, progesterone or estrogen. If you suspect you or someone you love is suffering from cognitive impairment, contact us now to schedule a consultation. Research proves that hormone replacement therapy can restore and even improve cognitive function. More importantly, it drastically lowers the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other brain disorders commonly associated with advanced age.
7. Healthier Skin
Decades of research have proven that estrogen and progesterone play a crucial role in the health of your skin. Such skin health benefits include a reduction in the frequency and severity of psoriasis, faster wound healing, thicker skin, better hydrated skin and much more elastic skin. Bioidentical hormone therapy can also reduce the appearance of wrinkles thanks to enhanced collagen quality and improved vascularization.
8. Less Bloating
Bloating is commonly associated with low testosterone. But it can also be caused by low estrogen. When your estrogen levels decrease, the level of bile in your gut decreases. Bile is a substance essential for keeping your intestines lubricated properly. When there is inadequate lubrication, your stools become harder and drier. This often causes constipation and, subsequently, bloating. Poor bowel lubrication is also responsible for other forms of gastrointestinal distress, including flatulence and painful cramping.
If you experienced bloating suddenly, it’s important that you call the experts at Advanced Anti Aging & Weight Loss in Evansville, IN at (812) 840-4800 or schedule a consultation promptly. Bloating can be a sign or symptom of more serious medical conditions than hormonal imbalances. These include a bowel obstruction, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), liver disease and ovarian cancer. It is crucial that you receive an accurate diagnosis in case you have a more serious medical condition so you can get rapid, effective treatment.
9. Denser Bones
Approximately 2 million American males suffer from osteoporosis. This is a bone disease characterized by thin, porous, brittle bones. Such bones are highly likely to fracture in the event of a fall or other traumatic event. An additional 12 million men are at risk of osteoporosis, suffering from osteopenia. Shockingly, women are four times more likely to suffer from osteoporosis than men.
So, what does this have to do with bioidentical hormone therapy? In both men and women, low estrogen can cause osteoporosis, especially in individuals who lead a sedentary lifestyle. Before menopause, women go through pre-menopause, which is characterized, in part, by low estrogen levels. In men, the rate of testosterone production reduces by a rate of around 1% per year once a man hits age 31. Unfortunately, men convert testosterone into estrogen. When testosterone production slows, men can suffer from low estrogen and experience significant bone loss.
Am I a Good Candidate for Natural Hormone Therapy?
Because bioidentical hormones are chemically and molecularly the same as your body’s natural hormones, everyone is a good candidate for natural hormone therapy. One of the most common reasons people turn to natural hormone therapy is because they do not respond to traditional anti-aging treatments.
To determine if you are a good candidate for natural hormone therapy, your hormone levels will be tested with a blood serum or saliva test. Throughout the course of your treatment, your hormone levels will be tested regularly to ensure the hormone replacement delivery method is working for you and treatment is still necessary.
How Are Bioidentical Hormones Used?
The best form of bioidentical hormones depends primarily on the symptoms of your imbalanced hormones. They come in the form of creams, gels, injections, lotions, oral pills and tablets and pellets which are implanted beneath your skin. Rarely, they come in the form of a spray.
What Treatments Complement Natural Hormone Therapy?
There are several treatments which complement natural hormone therapy very well. The best treatment plan for you depends on your symptoms. During your initial consultation, we will review your signs and symptoms of imbalanced hormones to create a custom treatment plan that suits your lifestyle. Regardless of your symptoms, some of the best things you can do for your health and happiness are to:
- Meditate for stress and anxiety reduction
- Exercise for stress reduction
- Eat a balanced, nutrient-dense diet
- Take vitamin supplements
Learn More About BHT Today
Hormonal imbalance is an incredibly common medical condition. It can cause symptoms including fatigue, insomnia, mood swings, rapid, unexplained weight gain and much more. But you don’t have to live with your symptoms. Bioidentical hormone therapy can help.
If you think you have imbalanced hormones, we urge you to contact the professional medical experts Advanced Anti Aging & Weight Loss in Evansville, IN today to schedule your initial consultation. We will measure the levels of your hormones so you can receive a quick, accurate diagnosis and a customized treatment plan.