These changes are a natural part of the ageing process, but they can be disruptive and even painful.
That's why it's essential for every perimenopausal and menopausal woman to have her hormone levels checked by a hormone expert. Testing key hormones can help identify any imbalances that may be causing problems and provide personalised care to manage symptoms and maintain optimal health.
One of the most important hormones to test during menopause is oestrogen. Women will typically experience an oestrogen decline or oestrogen dominance, in which oestrogen levels become too high compared to other hormones.
When oestrogen levels are out of balance, women may experience unexpected mood swings, weight gain, painful periods, and other changes in sleep and sexual drive.
The fluctuations in oestrogen can be incredibly disruptive, so it is key to monitor these levels as you enter perimenopause, which could be as early as your late 30s or early 40s. Testing oestrogen levels can help women understand their symptoms and determine how to manage them more effectively.
Progesterone levels are essential to maintain, and are one of the most common hormonal imbalances along with hypothyroidism.
Low levels of this hormone not only affect weight but have also been associated with insomnia, moodiness, anxiety, and depression. Low progesterone can also lead to headaches, dry skin, and hair loss.
Testing progesterone levels is crucial to identifying if a woman is at risk of any of these issues during perimenopause and beyond. Addressing any low progesterone levels early on can help reduce a woman’s overall menopausal symptoms and may lower your risk for certain cancers.
Most women don't realise that they have testosterone, as this hormone is typically only associated with men. However, maintaining healthy testosterone levels is just as important for women as it is for men.
Testosterone levels are an important hormone to be tested in menopausal women as it helps to maintain muscle mass and bone density. Low testosterone can cause bat wings or underarm fat to appear, low sex drive, as well as depression.
It is always best to have a blood test conducted by your doctor to determine if your testosterone levels are at optimal levels, especially if you experience any of the previously listed symptoms. Taking the simple step of having a blood test conducted can guarantee that you have healthy testosterone levels during this sometimes tumultuous stage of life.
Hypothyroidism is also one of the most common hormone imbalances women can experience due to many causes.
Often women may have their thyroid tested by their PCP only to be told “everything is fine” when their TSH or thyroid stimulating hormone is in range. Unfortunately, most doctors do not have the expertise in hormone testing to know that several thyroid hormones need to be tested to provide a clear picture of thyroid health.
Many women are struggling with hypothyroidism and may not know it, but they do notice that their perimenopausal symptoms worsen, like weight gain, painful periods, mood swings, and hair loss.
Hormone experts who may suspect hypothyroidism will test for a wide range of other thyroid hormones like free T3, free T4, reverse T3, as well as thyroid peroxidase (TPO) levels.
Hormone testing is an essential component of diagnosing and treating hormonal imbalances. Hormone experts may use various types of hormone testing to determine a patient's hormonal status, including blood testing, saliva testing, and urine testing.
The type of testing used will depend on the specific needs of the patient and their symptoms. For example, blood testing is often the preferred method for measuring thyroid hormones and sex hormones such as oestrogen and testosterone.
Saliva testing may be used to measure cortisol, a stress hormone, and to evaluate the diurnal rhythm of hormone secretion.
Urine testing may be used to assess hormone metabolites and to evaluate the body's ability to process hormones.
By using various types of hormone testing, hormone experts can obtain a comprehensive picture of a patient's hormonal status and develop a personalised treatment plan to optimise their health and well-being.
As a licenced health practitioner with deep expertise in hormone imbalances and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), our team will provide the appropriate guidance for your unique situation and we will keep tailoring your programme to your needs as things change.
We examine lifestyle factors that could be unnecessarily draining your natural hormone levels and also provide guidance on natural ways to boost your resilience and longevity.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can potentially reduce the risk of adverse side effects, alleviate symptoms leading to a healthier and happier life. Check out our signature three step programme on the bottom of the about/our approach page and if this resonates sign up for a free call so we can answer any questions you may have.
London Bioidentical Hormones is a Virtual Practice in the United Kingdom and serves patients throughout the United Kingdom.