Common Symptoms Of Too Little Estrogen
- Problems with focus
- Vaginal dryness resulting in painful intercourse
- Increase in urinary tract infections
- Issues with bones fracturing or breaking
If youre concerned about experiencing any of the above symptoms during menopause, make sure you speak to your primary healthcare provider. She will outline the various courses of treatment at your disposal.
Reasons For Low Estrogen
There are times when your estrogen levels fluctuate, such as during your period or when youre pregnant. But as you get older and approach menopause, your estrogen levels decline. For some, it happens earlier. Any condition that impairs the ovaries can reduce estrogen production.
Low estrogen levels can have a serious impact on your life. Fortunately, there are ways to replenish your estrogen supply so you dont have to suffer from the many life-altering symptoms.
What Are The Symptoms Of Low Estrogen
First off, it is worth saying that low estrogen symptoms can be also a result of smoking, hereditary predisposition, and excessive exercising. So, whenever a woman wants to prevent the fast onset of menopause, she should avoid such activities, and inform a dedicated expert about signature genetic details. In such a case, he will be able to appoint hormone replacement therapy or recommend health supplements that will stabilize the levels as much as possible. Besides, such treatment can alleviate the symptoms of low estrogen, and let the woman live a comfortable life.
Treatment + Hormone Replacement Therapy
There are two main approaches to treating low estrogen in women:
- #1. Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy – This should be the preferred route . HRT refers to the use of exact copies of the hormones that you are deficient in. HRT can be given so that it is safe and effective and, if done correctly, will not increase your risk of breast cancer or other issues .
- #2. Supplements – Supplements can help reduce the symptoms associated with low estrogen. These supplements are not as effective as HRT but they can be used in conjunction with HRT or by themselves if necessary.
Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy is the definitive and most effective way to treat low estrogen.
This causes an increase in those hormones and tends to quickly reverse the symptoms associated with their decline.
But be careful when using HRT.
You should look for a Doctor that specializes in hormone balance to ensure that you are getting enough hormone but not too much.
Doctors can alter the amount of estrogen that you receive , the way that you take it , the type of hormones you take and the frequency with which you take it.
All of these variables can be controlled to help provide you with the exact amount that your body needs.
Supplements can be added to HRT to further boost their effectiveness and they can even be used in isolation if you have a contra-indication to HRT.
HRT can be stopped around the “normal” menopause time-frame, or it can be continued beyond that point.
How To Decrease Estrogen Levels
If youre experiencing several of the above symptoms, consult a health care professional to determine if your body is producing too much estrogen. There are many natural ways to decrease your estrogen production to balance out your hormones. Consider these lifestyle changes to reduce your symptoms and get your body back on track.
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During The Follicular Phase Of The Cyclefrom The Start Of Your Period Until Ovulationestrogen Levels Are High You May Notice Some Changes Throughout Your Body
Your cervical fluid changes throughout the follicular phase:
Early-to mid follicular: dry/sticky
Late follicular to ovulation: wet and slippery, like an egg white
Some people notice an increase in their sex drive around ovulation
Youre Feeling Down Or Depressed
Estrogen helps your body produce serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that helps boost your mood. If you have low estrogen, your serotonin is likely lower, too.
“Low estrogen can affect your mood by influencing neurochemical pathways linked to depression” says Dr. Eyvazzadeh. “Animal and human studies have shown how estrogen and progesterone affects brain regions involved in mood. Both estrogen and progesterone influence known regions in the brain.”
Estrogenâs connection to serotonin also explains why you might be experiencing depression. Estrogen boosts serotonin, which helps your body combat depression. So if you have low estrogen, your low serotonin levels canât stave off sad feelings.
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Sex Is Suddenly Painful
Low estrogen can also make sex itself feel more painful . Dr. Eyvazzadeh points to vaginal dryness as a symptom of low estrogen from menopause: if you don’t have enough estrogen, your vagina can dry out, and having sex without enough lubrication can be seriously painful. Dr. Minkin also notes that for some people, being on a low-estrogen form of birth control can increase vaginal dryness: “The amount of moisture in your vagina is sort of dependent on the amount of estrogen in the pills, and … one of the side effects could be vaginal dryness.”
A lack of estrogen also can thin your vaginal walls, another thing that contributes to pain during penetration. Dr. Minkin suggests a vaginal moisturizer like Replens if vaginal dryness is an issue for you.
Does Having Or Not Having A Uterus Make A Difference In Deciding What Type Of Hormone Therapy I Should Take
Yes, it does.
If you still have your uterus:
Progesterone is used along with estrogen. Taking estrogen without progesterone increases your risk for cancer of the endometrium . During your reproductive years, cells from your endometrium are shed during menstruation. When the endometrium is no longer shed, estrogen can cause an overgrowth of cells in your uterus, a condition that can lead to cancer.
Progesterone reduces the risk of endometrial cancer by making the endometrium thin. If you take progesterone, you may have monthly bleeding, or no bleeding at all, depending on how the hormone therapy is taken. Monthly bleeding can be lessened and, in some cases, eliminated by taking progesterone and estrogen together continuously.
If you no longer have your uterus :
You typically won’t need to take progesterone. This is an important point because estrogen taken alone has fewer long-term risks than HT that uses a combination of estrogen and progesterone.
Some Common Causes Of Estrogen Dominance :
Excess body fat hormones play a role in your weight loss efforts and contribute to estrogen dominance because body fat actually produces estrogen! So the more body fat you have, the higher your baseline estrogen levels will be. PCOS is also associated with estrogen dominance and obesity.
Stress stress reduces progesterone, which counterbalances estrogen.
Constipation and inadequate dietary fiber intake regular bowel movements are crucial for helping your liver and bowels get rid of excess estrogen.
Abnormal or poor liver function your liver is the main site of hormone detoxification.
Exposure to environmental xenoestrogens these chemicals increase your bodys toxicity burden and put a strain on the liver to continuously detoxify.
Nutrient insufficiencies you need a variety of micronutrients for optimal hormone detoxification and elimination.
Excess alcohol intake when your liver is so busy detoxifying the alcohol, it cant work on clearing any other body toxins.
Why Do I Need An Estrogen Test
You may need an estradiol test or an estrone test if you:
- Are having trouble getting pregnant
- Are a woman of childbearing age who is not having periods or having abnormal periods
- Are a girl with early or delayed puberty
- Have symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes and/or night sweats
- Have vaginal bleeding after menopause
- Are a boy with delayed puberty
- Are a man showing female characteristics, such as the growth of breasts
If you are pregnant, your health care provider may order an estriol test between the 15th and 20th week of pregnancy as part of a prenatal test called a triple screen test. It can find out if your baby is at risk for a genetic birth defect such as Down syndrome. Not all pregnant women need to get an estriol test, but it is recommended for women who have a higher risk of having a baby with a birth defect. You may be at a higher risk if you:
- Have a family history of birth defects
- Are age 35 or older
- Have a viral infection during pregnancy
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Hormonal Imbalance In Women
Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance
Bloating, fatigue, irritability, hair loss, palpitations, mood swings, problems with blood sugar, trouble concentrating, infertility — these are just a few symptoms of hormone imbalance. These compounds affect every cell and system in the body. Hormone imbalance can debilitate you. Some hormonal shifts are normal, like monthly fluctuations of sex hormones responsible for menstruation and ovulation or the changes that occur during pregnancy. Menopause is another time for a normal hormonal shift in a woman’s life. Many women may experience weight gain, mood swings, night sweats, and diminished sex drive during this time. Other times these fluctuations may be due to a medication or a medical condition.
Balance Your Cortisol
Cortisol is an important hormone that may become imbalanced with stress or illness. Cortisol is secreted by the adrenal glands that lie on top of the kidneys. Low intensity exercise can help lower elevated cortisol levels. Stress impacts adrenal function and hormone levels. Get acquainted with hormone imbalance symptoms and signs so you can notice when things in your body and mind don’t seem right.
Progesterone Helps You Sleep Better
If you can’t sleep or you don’t get good quality sleep, hormone balance may be to blame. Progesterone is one compound released by the ovaries that helps you sleep. Low levels may make it difficult to fall and stay asleep. A small study in postmenopausal women found that 300 milligrams of progesterone restored normal sleep when sleep was disturbed. Estrogen levels decrease in perimenopause and after menopause. This may contribute to night sweats and hot flashes, which often disrupt a woman’s ability to sleep. See your doctor if you believe an imbalance in hormones is contributing to sleep problems.
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Low Estrogen Levels And Weight Gain: Is There A Connection
Sex hormones, such as estrogen, influence the amount of fat in the body. Estrogen regulates glucose and lipid metabolism. If your estrogen levels are low, it can result in weight gain.
If your estrogen levels are low and its affecting your weight, speak with your doctor. They can assess your symptoms and advise you on next steps. Its always a good idea to try to eat a balanced diet and exercise as often as possible. Talk with your doctor about developing a diet and exercise plan thats right for you.
What Happens When Testosterone Levels Rise Or Fall
If your body produces too much testosterone, you may have irregular or absent menstrual periods. You may also have more body hair than the average woman. Some women with high testosterone levels develop frontal balding. Other possible effects include acne, an enlarged clitoris, increased muscle mass, and deepening of voice.
High levels of testosterone can also lead to infertility and are commonly seen in polycystic ovarian syndrome . PCOS is an endocrine condition that is sometimes seen in women of childbearing age who have difficulty getting pregnant. Women with PCOS have symptoms similar to those produced by high testosterone levels. They include:
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Hormone Balance And Tummy Trouble
Cells lining the gastrointestinal tract have receptors for both estrogen and progesterone. Levels of these hormones change throughout the course of a woman’s monthly menstrual cycle. When they do, they impact the function of the gastrointestinal system. Women often experience abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, and nausea before or during their periods. These symptoms can also occur with many other conditions. If a woman experiences them along with mood changes and fatigue before or during her period, it may be more likely that the GI disturbances are occurring due to monthly hormonal fluctuations.
Causes Of High Estrogen
High levels of estrogen can develop naturally, but too much estrogen can also result from taking certain medications. For example, estrogen replacement therapy, a popular treatment for symptoms of menopause, may cause estrogen to reach problematic levels.
Your body may also develop low testosterone or low progesterone levels, which can upset your hormonal balance. If you have estrogen levels that are abnormally high relative to your progesterone levels, its known as estrogen dominance.
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Do You Need High Levels Of Estrogen To Get Pregnant
Do you need high levels of estrogen to get pregnant? Estrogen is a type of hormone, due to which pregnancy becomes impossible, if you are planning pregnancy, then there should be sufficient amount of estrogen hormone in your body, if it is not there, then with the help of diet, medication, healthy habits, you can help your body. May increase estrogen levels. To increase estrogen levels, include phytoestrogen rich foods in your diet, dont skip workouts, stay away from chemicals, and stay in touch with your doctor. In this article, we will discuss ways to increase estrogen levels, with the help of which you will be able to hear the good news of becoming a mother soon. For more information on this subject, we spoke to Dr Deepa Sharma, Gynecologist at Jhalkaribai Hospital, Lucknow.
Treatment of low estrogen level
Your doctor may recommend a blood test to see if your estrogen levels are increased. The blood test is done on the second or third day of the periods. If the level of estrogen in the test is low, then talk to your doctor, the level of estrogen can be increased through pills, creams, gels or therapy. If you are older and there is a long gap between periods or if the periods have stopped, then it can be a sign of some disease, you should inform your doctor about it. Pregnancy is a delicate process, do not try any medicine or remedy to get pregnant without first asking your doctor. To increase the level of estrogen, you should focus on these methods-
Youre Not Sleeping Well
If you find yourself tossing and turning, then chances are, itâs hormonal. As the body loses estrogen towards the stages of menopause, it can decrease in the sleep hormone, melatonin. Melatonin is crucial for regulating your sleep levels, how easily you fall asleep, and how easily you wake up. It also changes the way your body sleeps throughout the night. Sufficient levels can help your body stay asleep and enter a deep sleep, known as REM sleep, while low melatonin levels will have you peeking at the clock all night to see what time it is. Donât miss out on precious shut-eye! Your weight, mood, hormones and brain need good sleep to function at their peak level. As a bonus, that pillow time is precious to anti-aging as well ladies!
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Hormone Problems That Start In The Brain
The hypothalamus is the portion of the brain that lies near the pituitary gland. It helps regulate hormone secretion in various parts of the body, controlling functions like body temperature, mood, hunger, thirst, sleep, fatigue, sex drive, and circadian rhythms. Dysfunction of the hypothalamus may produce many symptoms depending on which hormone systems are affected. Supplementing hormone levels that are low may help relieve symptoms. If the hypothalamus is malfunctioning due to the presence of a tumor, treating the tumor may provide relief.
Stage : Luteal Phase = Lower Estrogen
In the second part of the cycle, the luteal phase, whenthe follicle has ruptured and the egg has been releasedâovulation has occurred. In the place where the follicle was, a new hormone producing structure forms from the walls of the follicle and is called the corpus luteum. The main function of the corpus luteum is to produce lots of progesterone, another sex hormone, but also some estradiol too .
If an egg is not fertilized and implanted, about four days before the start of the period, the corpus luteum stops producing progesterone and estradiol, and the levels of both hormones in the blood fall again. This triggers your period to start .
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Why Do Estrogen Levels Fall
There are many reasons why estrogen levels fall, including:
- Anorexia nervosa
- Extreme exercise or training
Drugs that block estrogen include clomiphene, which tricks the body into thinking it has decreased levels of estrogen. Also, women experience low levels of estrogen immediately after childbirth and also during breastfeeding.
What Happens To Estrogen During Menopause
During perimenopause , estrogen levels change at an irregular rate. Sometimes there is even more estrogen present in the body than during the childbearing years. This constant ebb and flow of estrogen can cause several uncomfortable symptoms, such as vaginal dryness, hot flashes, night sweats, low libido, and low energy.
During menopause, postmenopause stages of a womans life, estrogen levels are very low. The body is no longer producing estrogen through the ovaries and therefore many women may experience problems such as:
- Painful sex due to a lack of vaginal lubrication
- An increase in urinary tract infections due to a thinning of the urethra
- Mood swings
- Headaches or accentuation of pre-existing migraines
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