Hormone balancing comes in many different forms, depending on the time of life, whether you are male or female, if you are currently taking medications that affect hormones (such as birth control pills), and how stressful life is.
Stress hugely impacts hormones and even periods. Hormone balancing is really whole-body balancing when possible.
Hormone balancing is always individually tailored to the needs and symptoms of the patient. Sometimes it involves changing your diet, mind-body exercises, regular exercise, and vitamin and supplement support. However, most commonly once the symptoms are assessed, your provider will order serum hormone testing. The providers try to get the most optimal timing to find out what story a person’s hormones are telling us — such as drawing labs at a certain time of day or a certain time in a women’s cycle. Depending on the symptoms, the provider will also order labs that are precursors to regular hormones, such as DHEA and pregnenolone.
Sometimes treatment is cycle specific if symptoms are most before or during a menstrual cycle. Other times it is for daily dosing and management — such as during perimenopause or post-menopausal.
Hormone balancing is definitely a very broad and holistic approach in many cases, with a focus on hormones specific to what medical problem a patient is describing.
In many cases, the provider needs to evaluate other aspects that can affect the estrogen/progesterone/testosterone (which are sex hormones) such as looking at the balance between the thyroid gland and the adrenal gland as well as optimizing all of these systems, when needed, works best for most individuals.
Symptoms of hormone imbalance include:
- Hot flashes/night sweats
- Weight gain
- Vaginal dryness
- Loss of sex drive
- Breast tenderness
- Joint and muscle pain/aches
- Brain fog/mental confusion
- Cyclic migraines
- Facial hair
- Painful periods
- Irregular periods