What is hormonal imbalance?
Hormones are chemical messengers made by glands in the endocrine system. They travel through the blood to deliver messages which tell body organs what to do and when to do it.
Endocrine Glands are specialized cells, found throughout the body, that produce, store & release hormones into the blood. Hormones go on to support several organs.
Hormones influence most of the important bodily functions, so hormonal imbalances can lead to a variety of problems.
A hormonal imbalance is a hormone disorder that occurs when the body produces too much of certain hormones, too little of others, or has an imbalanced ratio of hormones. Hormonal imbalances can be caused by genetic conditions, diseases, lifestyle habits, surgeries and drug use.
This article will highlight the basics of hormonal imbalance and give insight on how they are diagnosed so that you can take proactive action to correct any irregularities in the future.
Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance
There are many symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Some symptoms may be more severe than others and some may only affect one part of your body.
Some common symptoms of hormonal imbalance are unexplained weight gain, breast pain, mood swings, headaches and insomnia.
Causes of Hormonal Imbalance
There are a lot of possible reasons for hormonal imbalance. Causes for this vary depending on which hormones or glands are affected. Two common causes include:
Hypothyroidism, which is typically seen as an underactive thyroid, but can be caused by an autoimmune disorder or a viral infection. The thyroid gland, located at the front lower part of the neck, regulates the levels of hormones produced by other glands. When it malfunctions it can lead to hormonal imbalance.
Estrogen deficiency, which is a more common problem affecting women as they age and usually happens due to low levels of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) from their pituitary gland.
Hormonal imbalance treatment options
Treatment for hormonal imbalances will depend on what caused the condition. There are different kinds of treatment that may be needed.
Treatment options for women with hormone imbalances include:
- Hormone replacement therapy, which is the most common treatment for women with hormone imbalances.
- Vaginal estrogen is a form of hormone replacement therapy that is applied directly to the vagina. It can be given as a gel, cream, or tablet inserted into the vagina.
- Clomiphene and letrozole are medications which can help ovarian stimulation in women with PCOS.
Supplements and natural remedies for hormonal imbalance
Historically, people have used natural supplements to treat hormonal imbalances for thousands of years.
Natural supplements commonly used for the reduction of symptoms associated with hormonal imbalances include:
If you’re having troubles with menopause, black cohosh is an herbal supplement that can alleviate hot flashes. If you’re feeling hostile, anxious or experiencing sleep problems, ginseng can help. For men with ED issues ginseng alongside maca extract has good results too.
Different Types of Hormonal Imbalances That Women Can Develop
When you think of hormonal imbalances, you might think of polycystic ovary syndrome. But there are many more. Let’s take a look at the three that affect women the most.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is characterized by enlarged ovaries that contain numerous small cysts on their surfaces. The cysts are formed by immature eggs that have not been released from the ovaries during their normal menstrual cycle.
Endometriosis occurs when some or all of this lining grows outside of the uterus, typically on one or both sides of it, but sometimes even further away from it too. The endometrium is a thick layer of tissue that lines the inside of the uterus and grows each month in preparation for pregnancy.
How a Hormonal Imbalance Can Affect a Woman’s Health
Hormonal imbalances are common in women. Some may not show symptoms while others may experience many side effects. Some of the most common hormonal imbalance side effects for women are weight gain, anxiety, mood swings, and depression.
About half of all women suffer from a hormonal imbalance at some point in their life. Hormonal imbalances can be caused by a variety of factors including childbirth, stress, irregular periods, the menopause process – which typically begins around age 50 – or even other medical conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure.
Individuals experiencing symptoms of a hormonal imbalance should consult their doctor to get an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan. They can also visit health centres for information on how to fix hormone imbalance problems before they intensify.
Other Hormonal Imbalance Complications
Hormones play a key part in metabolism and your body’s ability to create and use energy. If you suffer from hormone problems such as Cushing syndrome, then insulin might not work properly and you may become overweight or develop obesity.
If your thyroid isn’t functioning properly, it can lead to weight gain.
During menopause, many women find that they gain weight because the metabolism slows down. Even though you may exercise and eat normally, it can be difficult to not gain weight Acne
Acne is a skin condition that is often related to excess oil and clogged pores. Acne outbreaks happen most often in areas with many oil glands, such as the face & chest. The type of acne people experience varies by age, with younger children tending to experience blackheads and whiteheads while adults more often experience pimples and cysts.
Androgens like testosterone contribute to acne by overstimulating the oil glands. Acne is most common during puberty when both girls and boys have high levels of androgens, but it can also occur in adults if their body produces too much of the hormone.
The menstrual cycle is one of the most common acne triggers, as many women experience a flare-up just before they get their period. Acne then clears up as soon as the period is over.
Most hair loss, such as male pattern baldness, is hereditary rather than hormonal. hair loss
Hormonal changes and imbalances can sometimes cause temporary hair loss. An overproduction or underproduction of thyroid hormones can also cause hair loss.