Many women in the United States today choose to use hormone replacement therapy as a way to ease menopause symptoms. Such symptoms can include mood swings, hot flashes, and vaginal dryness. With the help of hormone therapy, such symptoms are relieved, and women can go about their day feeling an overall quality sense of well-being.
For many years, women have been using hormone replacement therapy to deal with menopause symptoms. However, in the early 2000s, it was found that using traditional hormone therapy for long periods of time can increase the chance of blood clots, breast cancer, heart disease or stroke. When these warnings took place, alternative methods were created for hormone therapy including bioidentical hormone therapy.
Bioidentical Hormones: What Are They?
Chemically, bioidentical hormones are the same as hormones produced in the body, yet they are created in a laboratory setting. The body should be unable to tell that the bioidentical hormones are not biological ones and react in the same manner, decreasing the symptoms associated with menopause as a result. These hormones can be created from several sources including plants and products of animals.
Now you may be wondering if bioidentical hormones are different from synthetic hormones. With bioidentical hormones, the chemical and molecular structure as the same as traditional hormones found in the body, so the body will accept the application of such hormones. With other types of lab-created hormones, like synthetic hormones, the body will react in a different manner as the hormones are not similar in nature.
Benefits of Bioidentical Hormones
Now that you have a better understanding of this hormone type, it is important to note the benefits of using bioidentical hormones. As the hormones are used to treat menopause in women, there are several positive results that can be created with regular use. This includes:
Decreasing the potential for dry skin
Hot flashes minimalized
Hair thinning less prevalent
- Sex drive increases
- Better memory
How to Use Bioidentical Hormones
If you decide that bioidentical hormones are right for you to treat symptoms of menopause, then you will need to choose the form in which you take the hormones. Bioidentical hormones are created in several forms including injections, tablets, creams, lotions, and gels. The goal is to apply the hormone to restore the natural hormones in the body that are lost as we age.
By discussing with your physician, the need for hormone treatment, it can be determined whether or not you will need such treatment as bioidentical hormones. Current hormone levels will need to be determined, which can be done with a sample of blood or saliva. Once it is found that hormone levels are low, a mix of bioidentical hormones can be created and administered on a regular basis to decrease symptoms of menopause.
A compounding pharmacist will be able to create a formulation of bioidentical hormones that will work for you symptom needs. A tablet option will usually dissolve under your tongue while a skin cream would be applied directly to the skin. Commonly prescribed estrogens and progesterone’s for women can include Estrace.
Before beginning any type of new hormone regimen, it is important to consult with a physician. Your doctor will be able to review your hormone levels and determine a course of action to increase hormone levels when needed. Before trying bioidentical hormones, your physician may suggest vitamin supplements, a more balanced diet, exercise increase and trying to reduce stress and anxiety. If these changes do not work, bioidentical hormones can be used as a way to reduce the symptoms of menopause and help older women to replenish the hormones in the body that tend to decrease with age.