Something just isn’t right with … whatever it is you’re concerned about. In this case, we’re going to look at symptoms due to hormone imbalance. What is your particular symptom?
This Doesn’t Feel Right
What’s wrong with me? You may not know the cause or exactly how to explain what is happening. It is obvious to you that something is not working the way it should. At least that’s what you think. At times a feeling: a change in emotions, discomfort or pain. Sometimes an increase or decrease in a condition. At times it’s an outward appearance.
What you may not be aware of is that you could be experiencing a hormone imbalance symptom or several symptoms. A few of these are:
- Excessive hair growth.
- Unusual or unexplained weight gain.
- Irregular menstruation – lasting longer or shorter, less or more frequent than normal, lighter or heavier.
- Headaches, usually before to during your menstrual cycle.
- Acne breakout that doesn’t seem to go away … chronic!
- Abdominal pain, which may be caused by Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), several cysts on the ovary.
What Should I Do?
Where do I begin? The best place to start is with a visit to an endocrinologist or get a referral from your primary care physician. One or a series of tests will generally identify the cause. Not all symptoms are due to a medical condition or hormone imbalance. In the case of irregular hormone behavior, your endocrinologist will recommend a treatment plan in an effort to alleviate or reduce the problem.
The more you know about your body … how the various systems work … you will be in a better position to understand the messages your body is sending you. Awareness can lead to taking action early and finding a solution quicker. This may even prevent a more adverse condition from surfacing. Our cells, tissues, organs, and systems are all interrelated. Something can go wrong in one area and it has an effect on another area.
If you are experiencing excessive hair growth, for example, this could be a hormone imbalance symptom. Testosterone, which is a hormone more dominant in men, is also present in women to a lesser degree. Women generally have more of the estrogen hormone than testosterone; men have more testosterone than estrogen. In an abnormal situation, a woman will have an increase of the male-dominant hormone present. One of the side effects is “male-pattern” hair in women … darker, thicker hair on the face, chest, and other areas. You should take action as soon as possible.
Here Are Some Options
Everyone’s diagnosis may be different. Some symptoms are as a result of temporary changes in the body such as pregnancy, menstruation, menopause or even stress. When the symptom is hormone-related, the specific cause has to be identified. Some treatment methods come with their own side effects.
- Hormone replacement therapy, used to treat menopausal symptoms, comes highly recommended by doctors. Some side effects are: increased risk of heart attacks, strokes, and breast cancer. The risk may be reduced when used short term.
- Progestin (produced to mimic progesterone) used to treat many irregularities associated with reproduction. There are many side effects including pain or tenderness in the breast, headaches, and problems urinating.
- Plant-based alternatives to synthetic hormone treatments are considered safer; however, they are not regulated by the FDA. This may not be a bigger or as big a risk as side effects from pharmaceutical drugs. The medical authorities may advise you otherwise.
Decision, Decision, Decision
Something needs to be done … the sooner the better. While your endocrinologist has identified the problem, a decision has to be made about the treatment path to take. The more knowledgeable you are, you will be in a better position to make a decision. For example, you are presented with several options. There may be risk factors of varying degrees involved. You will have to weigh the pros and cons to come to a conclusion.
Your endocrinologist will take the time to outline each one to you. Ask questions and be satisfied with the answers before moving on. Put your mind at ease by being clear on the condition you’re dealing with and the treatment plan.
When it’s time to move forward, try to maintain a positive outlook. A healthy mind makes a huge difference.
Now That I Know
So here’s the thing … your body is telling you something is wrong. You’re acting weird emotionally. You’re experiencing pain or some other form of discomfort. There may even be evidence of an outward, physical abnormality. This is a cause for concern.
You take the first step in consulting an endocrinologist. Through a process of elimination, you find that what you are experiencing is a hormone imbalance symptom or symptoms. You are presented with a few options for treatment with the hope of regaining your health. These options come with their own set of problems … side effects for the most part. In some cases side effects are unavoidable. As you try to cure one thing, you have to deal with the consequences.
The discussion with your endocrinologist includes the most effective long- or short-term and cost-effective treatment. Ask questions freely to get a better understanding of what you are facing and the best way forward. You must be able to trust your endocrinologist. Try to work together to find what works best for you. Have a positive outlook and move forward with a plan of action. Optimal health is something to strive for and cannot be achieved in isolation. The body’s systems work together to maintain balance.
I hope this short article has helped you in some way. There is a vast amount of information on the subject and related matter. This is just an introduction especially for those who are at a loss and need to be pointed in the right direction.
Feel free to leave your questions and comments below. I will do my best to address them.