In the time leading up to menopause — and for some time after — hormonal imbalances can cause a host of symptoms. During this time, your periods slow to a stop, and you might experience a variety of symptoms, such as hot flashes, anxiety, and pain during sex.
While the symptoms of menopause can be minimal for some women, they can be severe for others. If you’re struggling with the mood changes and physical discomfort of menopausal symptoms, our team at Alpha Care Medical in Seaford, Millsboro, Harrington, and Dover, Delaware, can discuss bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT).
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy treats menopausal symptoms by replacing the hormones your body stops producing. In this blog, our providers at Alpha Care Medical explain more about what menopause is and how BHRT can help.
The basics of menopause
Every year, roughly a million middle-aged women in the United States reach menopause. Menopause is the term used to describe when your menstrual cycle stops. You stop ovulating and you stop having periods.
During perimenopause, which is the period leading up to menopause, your ovaries’ production of the hormones estrogen and progesterone fluctuates a lot. Those hormones are responsible for regulating many of your body’s processes, including menstruation.
Unfortunately, because of the hormonal imbalances caused by perimenopause and menopause, a vast array of symptoms can result.
How bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can help
Bioidentical hormones have the same structure as the hormones your body produces. Furthermore, they come from plant sources, and they’re able to interact with your body’s hormone receptors in the same way as your natural hormones. Your body doesn’t know the difference.
With BHRT, we help put your hormone levels back in balance by replacing the hormones your body no longer produces. This, in turn, can help reduce or eliminate your symptoms
To see the extent of your imbalance, we may take a blood, urine, or saliva test to check your hormone levels. Then, once we know what you need, we can discuss how you can receive your therapy. You may be able to take your hormones in a number of ways, such as through pills, patches, creams, shots, or implanted pellets.
When to consider bioidentical hormone replacement therapy
Not everyone going through menopause needs or should take hormones to reduce their symptoms. For example, if you have no symptoms, or if your symptoms are very mild, you likely don’t need to take hormone therapy. Furthermore, if you have a high risk for certain conditions, such as stroke or breast cancer, hormone therapy may not be safe.
Do know that before providing treatment, your provider will discuss your health and any issues that may affect your ability to undergo BHRT. In general, you may be a candidate for BHRT if your symptoms are severe enough to impact your well-being. Your symptoms could include any of the following:
- Hot flashes
- Sweating a lot at night
- General mood swings
- Urinary incontinence
- Memory problems
- Pain during vaginal sex
Our team can discuss your symptoms and help you decide if taking hormones is the best way to help relieve your symptoms.
To learn more about bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and to see if this treatment or other options may be able to help you, book an appointment online or over the phone with Alpha Care Medical today. We have locations in Seaford, Millsboro, Harrington, and Dover, Delaware.