Hormone replacement therapy is typically used for women going through menopause. But there are a few different kinds of hormone therapy, and it can become confusing on which one is the safest and best choice for you. The best type of hormone replacement depends on your health, age, and personal preference. This article will look at what hormone therapy is and the safest hormone replacement therapy for your body.
Hormone replacement therapy replaces the missing hormones in your body with natural ones. Hormones are essential messengers that help direct and control different bodily functions in your body. For women, the two most important hormones are estrogen and progesterone. These essential hormones help regulate the menstrual cycle, fertility, bone health, cardiovascular health, and more.
Hormone therapies come in synthetic and bioidentical forms. A doctor usually prescribes synthetic forms, and the hormones come from different ingredients, including horse urine. Bioidentical hormones are available with or without a prescription and are more natural. The ingredients come from wild yams and mimic the ones produced naturally in the body.
Hormone therapy is commonly prescribed for women to help balance hormones. However, the safest choice depends on a few different factors, including the following:
Your personal medical and family history can determine which type of hormone therapy is right for you. Look at whether you have a higher risk of cancer, stroke, heart disease, liver diseases, and others to determine whether hormone supplementation is proper for you.
Hormone therapy comes in different forms, from the type of supplement to the ingredients. For example, are you going to take estrogen with progesterone or just progesterone alone? The dosage matters as well and how long you'll be taking it. Low dosage replacement plans have lower risks compared to higher doses.
The time in your life you begin hormone replacement therapy is also something to think about before beginning. Research has shown that women ten years past menopause have a greater risk for blood clots, stroke, cancer, and heart disease. But if hormone supplementation begins within ten years before or after menopause, the chances are lower and outweigh potential risks.
When considering hormone replacement therapy, look at the above factors and consult with your doctor to find the best program and hormone combination for your body.
HRT comes in different forms of supplementation. The most common ones are oral pills, creams, suppositories, or injections.
Pills come in different doses, but typically 5-10 mg. You take them once a day at a set time. This is because your body absorbs the hormones eventually after they go through your digestive system. For some women, this can cause an upset stomach or weaken the dosage. Also, pills can be bulky and hard to swallow for some people.
Vaginal suppositories are capsules of hormones. Usually, progesterone and estrogen, inserted into the vagina for absorption. They are typically used once or twice a week and can help with severe vaginal atrophy or dryness symptoms. Injections use needles and aren't as common as other forms for menopausal women.
Transdermal creams come in lotion-like creams applied directly to the skin. The hormones soak through the skin to awaiting receptors in the body. The medicine is then transported through the bloodstream throughout the body.
Research shows that creams can be faster acting and more effective than other forms of hormone therapy. The reason is that they bypass the digestive system and quickly enter the bloodstream through the skin. They are also safer for people with liver and cholesterol concerns.
The creams are greaseless, easy to apply, and have added soothing ingredients such as aloe vera or coconut oil. So they add back the missing hormones and rejuvenate the skin simultaneously.
Hormone therapy is generally safe with lower risks if taken at a lower dose for a short period. But when considering hormone supplementation, you can do the following to minimize your risk.
Not all hormone supplements may be the best choice. Choose ones made with high-quality ingredients and in a suitable delivery method. Oral pills can generally have more side effects and come in high doses that may not be appropriate to your body.
Vaginal suppositories work well for vaginal dryness or symptoms affecting vaginal tissue more. Transdermal creams tend to work better overall and are faster acting.
Lower dose supplementation for a shorter amount of time will lower any possible risks; however, your dosages and length of treatment will depend on your health situation and why you're taking it. For example, you may be dealing with an estrogen deficiency causing extreme health effects and need a more extended treatment at a higher dosage.
As you undergo treatment, check-in regularly with your doctor to make sure that you're benefiting from ongoing hormone therapy. You can have screenings and bloodwork done to monitor hormone levels.
Hormone therapy works better with healthier lifestyle choices. Incorporate a healthy diet and regular exercise into your daily regimen. If you smoke, quit. Limit the amount of alcohol you consume and learn to manage stress and other ongoing health conditions.
Hormone replacement therapy is for anyone suffering from a hormone imbalance. Typically, it's women going through menopause who are experiencing painful menopausal symptoms. This hormone therapy is generally with estrogen or an estrogen and progesterone combination. But men also can have lower hormone levels and need testosterone or DHEA replacement. In fact, low DHEA can cause low levels of other hormones.
Regardless of your gender, finding the safest hormone replacement therapy depends on your personal medical history, age, and personal preference. The safest method is a high-quality cream at an optimal dose for a shorter time. Check with your doctor to find out what's right for you.