How Can You Cure Hormonal Acne Without Knowing The Hormone Levels
This seems like a pretty obvious question, but as I was just saying, you might find your doctor doesnt see it this way though.
You might have already experienced going to your doctor and asking to get your hormones tested and found there werent too keen to do it. The reason for this is because medical treatments are really strong. The birth control pill and Accutane/Roaccutane usually work regardless of what type of hormone imbalance you have, so your doctor thinks why to bother testing.
They know the medications are that powerful that they will just override any hormonal imbalance.
But the problem with these treatments is that when you stop them, your hormonal imbalance returns and so does your acne. So if you want to get rid of your acne for good, then you need to balance out your hormones.
So when you want to solve your hormonal acne issues naturally, we need to know what your hormone levels are like. So testing becomes critically important. When you do the testing, you know what your hormone levels are which then allows you to be very specific around the herbs and supplements youll use.
Because if you dont test, all you can do is guess at what you need, and this is where most people are at.
So what I see a lot in my clinic is patients come to see me and theyre taking a whole heap of supplements, but theyve still got acne. And this is because they dont really know what they should be taking and what theyre taking isnt correcting their hormone imbalance.
Where Should I Get A Hormone Balance Test
Hormone balance tests can be performed in a variety of settings. Many people first get their hormones tested by their primary care doctor or gynecologist. Others prefer to go straight to a lab facility. While both of these methods can garner accurate results, we recommend getting your hormones tested bya hormone health specialist. These practitioners have the training and experience necessary to determine which tests are right for you, and are experts at both interpreting your results and providing treatment.
Which Hormone Tests Should I Ask For
Which tests you undergo will depend on your symptoms and preferences.
On the other hand, you might simply be interested in a general hormone health check even if you dont have any specific concerns or symptoms of a hormonal imbalance. This can be useful to establish a baseline that helps you identify hormonal changes in the future or detect asymptomatic health conditions.
Regardless of whether you have specific concerns or just want an overview of your current hormonal health, your healthcare practitioner can help you determine which tests are most appropriate for your situation.
Three Questions To Ask Your Doctor In The Most Common Scenarios:
Why Is An Lh Test Done
The LH test is done to measure the LH levels in the blood. The LH levels in the blood indicate menstrual problems, fertility, and the onset of puberty. This test also helps in the evaluation of pituitary function and in detecting the release of an egg from the ovary . In children, this test is done to evaluate the early or delayed puberty.
Your physician will ask you to take the LH test if you experience the following problems.
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Common Symptoms Of Hormone Imbalances
Heres the thing: Hormonal imbalances can have a lot of symptoms and they can have a lot of different symptoms, depending on which ones are at the root of your issues. Those symptoms may seem muddled or initially unrelated, and theyre not always related to hormones at all.
Hormones can cause so many symptoms, but that doesnt mean theyre always the cause of your symptoms, Dr. Batur says, so its really important to be seen by a doctor for an individualized assessment. Here are some common symptoms of hormonal imbalances in women and what they might signify.
How Does Menopause Affect Hormone Levels
Menopause is not just about one moment when women do not have a period anymore. During this natural occurrence, there are three main stages. The first one is called perimenopause which lasts approximately 3-5 years. The symptoms of it, are irregular menstruation bleeding, hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and psycho-emotional disorders such as irritability, aggression, and even panic. Here the hormone levels start fluctuating.
The second stage is called menopause. It means there are no more periods, and a lady cannot give birth to children. Also, this stage is diagnosed only with a doctor after she was 12 months straight without menstrual bleeding. Here thelevels are decreased. And, the symptoms are the same, however, a woman can also experience memory problems, and decreased libido.
Finally, the last stage is the postmenopause. And, it lasts for the rest of your life. Nevertheless, all the stages are critical for ladies. Because hormonelevels during menopause are not stable, and they do not provoke symptoms only but may affect the development of a disease. For instance, nodes and polyps can occur in the uterus, benign fibroids in malignancies, and also, hormone levels in menopause may bring some discomfort in your intimate zone, such as vaginism.
How Hormone Testing Works
Hormones can be tested several different ways blood, urine, and saliva. Which one is best for you depends on your symptoms or any diagnosed conditions. In general, for fertility and to monitor the status of hormone replacement therapy, blood tests are sufficient. When evaluating hormone imbalances like PMS, PCOS, and chronic fatigue choosing urine or saliva will provide you additional insight into the root cause of the condition. Its important to test your estrogen metabolites and the circadian rhythm of your cortisol to obtain a complete picture of your hormones and evaluate any potential hormone imbalance.
If youre on birth control, your hormone levels on any test will be suppressed, because birth control pills contain synthetic estrogen and/or progesterone which deplete your bodys natural production of these hormones. Once going off the birth control pill, your body should naturally take over this process again, however that can take up to 12 months to regain a regular menstrual cycle.
Figuring Out If You Need Hormone Testing
To decide whether you need hormone testing , your doctor will likely start by asking you lots of questions about your symptoms. This will help them put together the puzzle pieces of what might be going on.
The workflow in my head focuses on three questions, Dr. Batur says. First, do these symptoms sound hormonal? If so, do they sound like theyre related to estrogen, progesterone, testosterone or some other type of hormone? And finally, is it because theyre too low or too high?
Once your doctor has a sense of what might be happening, theyll figure out which tests to run.
One symptom that indicates that you may need testing is irregular periods.
If youre having regular menstrual cycles and not having symptoms throughout the month, I dont usually start with lots of estrogen, progesterone or testosterone tests, Dr. Batur says. But if youre experiencing a lot of irregularities in your cycle, Im likely to do more testing.
What Are The Different Types Of Hormones
Endocrine glands are located throughout the body. These glands include the:
- Hypothalamus: controls thirst, hunger, sleep, sex drive, moods, body temperature, and the release of other hormones
- Parathyroid: controls calcium
- Ovaries, in women: controls female sex hormones
- Testes, in men: controls male sex hormones
There are several different types of hormones in the body. When you have a hormonal imbalance, you may have a problem in one of more of these glands. The specific hormone that’s imbalanced will determine the signs and symptoms that you experience as a result. Some of the major hormones found in the body include:
- Estrogen: controls sex drive in both men and women, and regulates the menstrual cycle in women
- Progesterone: influences the body’s changes through pregnancy
- Testosterone: controls sex drive in both men and women
- Cortisol: controls stress
- Melatonin: control’s the body’s circadian rhythm and sleep cycles
- Serotonin: controls sleep cycles, appetite, and mood
- Growth hormone: controls the reproduction of cells and their subsequent growth
- Leptin: controls appetite, signaling when you’re full
- Ghrelin: controls appetite, signaling when you’re hungry
- Insulin: responds to sugar in the bloodstream
If your hormones are well-balanced, you will thrive. An imbalance, however, is something you cannot afford to ignore.
Insurance And Fertility Testing
The majority of insurance plans do not cover proactive fertility testing. Generally, couples have to prove that theyve been trying to conceive for up to a year in order to get coverage. Only 16 states cover fertility testing for women that have been diagnosed with infertility . This is problematic because it prevents women from being proactive and doesnt apply to same sex couples.
The lack of insurance coverage is precisely what sparked our Co-founder Afton to start Modern Fertility. She sought to get her fertility hormones tested proactively, and it took months to get the tests and cost $1,500 out-of-pocket, but the results were eye-opening.
Last on the insurance front, its worth noting that with more women on high deductible plans, even if infertility testing is covered, they will still have to pay $800 to $1,500 out of pocket for the lab tests if they have already hit their deductible. Its also good to know that women are billed separately for the follow-up consult to discuss their results with their physicianthe consult can be $500+ alone and also typically is not covered by insurance.
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What Have We Learned
When compared to the cost of drugs to treat the individual symptoms of hormone decline or to other forms of BHRT, testosterone pellets are very cost effective. In addition, theyre easy to use, require minimal doctors visits, and keep your hormone levels on an even keel.
If youre ready to feel younger, get healthy, and get your mojo back, we can help. Well dig deep to find the root cause of your health concerns and create a customized wellness plan to help you regain your health, vibrancy, and vigor.
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Symptoms And Potential Complications
Imbalances in female hormones can have far-ranging effects on the body, producing a variety of physical, emotional and cognitive changes. These changes can cause symptoms that may include:
- Menstrual cycle changes, including shorter or longer times between periods, and periods that are longer, shorter, heavier or lighter than normal.
- Hot flashes and night sweats.
- Insomnia and other sleep disturbances
- Diminished sex drive
- Unexplained weight gain, especially in the abdominal area, hips and thighs
- Skin changes, such as thinning, dryness and wrinkling
- Dry, brittle hair
Female hormone imbalance can increase a womans risk of a number of diseases and health problems. Among the most serious of these is heart disease, with risk increasing as estrogen levels decrease. Women with hormonal imbalances are also at greater risk for osteoporosis, since low levels of estrogens can interfere with the absorption of calcium and other nutrients essential to the maintenance of bone health and density.
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Is Hrt The Same As Birth Control
No. Although women who take birth control pills are also taking estrogen and progestin, the effect is not the same. Women who take birth control pills have not been through menopause and need higher levels of hormones to prevent ovulation. HRT is not a high enough strength to stop ovulation.
After menopause, estrogen levels are low and HRT is used at a low dose to restore hormone levels to a more normal level.
Treatment For A Hormonal Imbalance
There are many different treatment options for hormonal imbalances. The treatment you ultimately be given will depend on which hormone exactly is unbalance as well as the underlying cause of the imbalance. Sometimes, a life event might cause such a fluctuation in your hormones, such as menopause. In that case, your treatment would be short term one. However, if you have a genetic disorder that causes a lifelong hormonal imbalance, you will need to pursue a more prolonged course of medications.
Hormone therapy is a common treatment for hormonal imbalances. Women who are witnessing uncomfortable menopausal symptoms may choose estrogen therapy. Testosterone therapy is a common choice for men with low testosterone levels or adolescents facing delayed puberty. Taking thyroid hormones can help individuals with hypothyroidism. Such hormone replacement therapies may come in the form of pills, patches, or even injections. Your doctor will help you choose the appropriate dosage by checking your hormone levels test results. This is how he will determine the right amount of supplemented hormone you will need to recreate the balance.
Bioidentical hormones can be produced by pharmaceutical companies using different doses. Examples include bi-estrogen which is 50 to 80 percent estriol combined with estradiol, or tri-estrogen which is 10 percent estrone, 10 percent estradiol, and 80 percent estriol.
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How To Test Cortisol Levels
Cortisol levels are measured with lab tests. These may be blood tests, which measure levels of the hormone in the bloodstream, or saliva tests, which measure cortisol levels in a saliva sample. Cortisol testing is typically done early in the morning, when levels are normally highest. Often, to produce the most accurate results, testing is repeated in the afternoon of the same day. Cortisol testing is often done in conjunction with ACTH level tests, since this pituitary gland hormone works to regulate cortisone levels. ACTH tests measure levels of the hormone in the bloodstream.
Getting tested can be done through your health care provider, who can order your tests for you, take your blood or saliva samples or send you to a lab to have them done. Then, your provider will let you know your results once they are delivered to his or her office.
You can also order these lab tests yourself online or over the phone from independent testing services, like Health Testing Centers. Ordering your own tests is generally less expensive, since you skip the cost of an office visit, and more efficient, since the results are delivered directly to you.
However, it is important to note that if your tests show that your cortisol and/or ACTH levels are abnormal too high or too low following up on those results with a visit to your healthcare provider is essential. Abnormal levels of these important hormones require further examination and testing.
Hormonal Imbalance And Women
Female hormones are powerful chemical messengers that regulate the reproductive system and influence many other vital systems. When they are present in the body in the proper amounts and ratios, they work in concert with one another to promote optimal health and well-being. However, when female hormonal imbalance becomes an issue, the consequences can manifest themselves throughout the body, taking a toll on a woman’s health and quality-of-life. When the condition is accurately identified and treated, the balance of female hormones can be corrected, reducing the symptoms and health risks associated with hormonal imbalance.
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Appetite And Weight Gain
You may gain weight during hormonal shifts, such as menopause. But hormone changes donât directly affect your weight. Instead, it likely happens because of other factors, like aging or lifestyle. For example, when youâre feeling blue or irritated, as you can be when your estrogen levels drop, you may want to eat more. It can also impact your bodyâs levels of leptin, a hunger-revving hormone.
Androgen Excess And Hormone Imbalance
There are other forms of hormone imbalance too like those that arises from excess androgens in PCOS. Usually you can check these hormones when you check the others. You would not want to check when you are menstruating because the production of these hormones is going to be lowest at this time. These hormone levels may be much higher later on in the cycle. Specifically the hormones that are important to look at and understand how they are funneling through the body are dhea, dhea sulfate, total and free testosterone, sometimes dihydrotestosterone and definitely hydroxy-progesterone.
Keep in mind not all insurances are going to pay for all these lab tests. In this case it may make more sense to do a urine test. These test provide a full hormone profile of all these hormones plus others. By looking at all these you can see which enzymes are up regulated and turned on and which ones are turned off based on the relative levels of the different hormones.
For example, you may do a dhea level and it looks really low but your dhea sulfate is really high. This suggests the enzyme between dhea and dhea sulfate is working relatively good and the the enzyme that breaks dhea sulfate into androstenedione is moving much slower. This is where you get the clues to understand what you need to do to fix the imbalance or create balance.
If you want a customized plan on checking and treating your hormone imbalance, click in the link below to get started.
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