You May Be Familiar With Hormone Therapy, But Is It Right for You?
Female hormones are used in hormone therapy. Doctors advise women to use the medicine to replace estrogen lost during menopause. Hormone treatment is used to alleviate common menopausal symptoms. Hot flashes, as well as vaginal soreness and discomfort during intercourse, are examples of these symptoms.
Hormone therapy has also been shown to be effective in preventing bone loss and lowering the risk of fractures in postmenopausal women.
There are still hazards involved with hormone therapy, however they vary according to the type of HT, dosage, length of treatment, and general health prior to commencing the therapy. Because of the risk, doctors advise that everyone be assessed before receiving treatment.
Types of Hormone Therapy
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) aims to replace estrogen, which your body stops producing after menopause. To clarify, there are two types of estrogen therapy:
Systemic Hormone Therapy
Menopause is treated with systemic estrogen. It is commonly taken as a pill, but it can also be applied as a ring, gel, cream, patch, or spray providing a larger amount of estrogen to ensure that it is distributed throughout the body.
Low-Dose Vaginal Products
Low-dose vaginal treatments are available as cream, pill, or ring. Because no two women are the same, it is possible to reduce estrogen absorption in the body. Simultaneously, low-dose vaginal treatments are being used to treat vaginal and urinary problems.
If you haven’t had a hysterectomy, your doctor will almost certainly advise you to take estrogen in conjunction with progesterone or progestin. Because estrogen alone stimulates the uterine lining, it increases your risk of endometrial cancer. You may not need to take progesterone if you have had your uterus removed.
Who can Benefit from Hormone Therapy?
For women who are healthy, the benefits of hormone therapy could outweigh any of the risks associated with hormone therapy and you:
- Having hot flashes ranging from mild to severe? Systemic estrogen therapy is still the most effective treatment for menopausal hot flashes and night sweats.
- Do you have hot flashes that go from moderate to severe? Systemic estrogen therapy is still the most effective medication for relieving menopausal hot flashes and night sweats.
- Need to prevent bone loss or fractures. Systemic estrogen helps to protect against osteoporosis, a bone-thinning condition. However, doctors typically prescribe bisphosphonates to treat osteoporosis. Still, estrogen therapy may be beneficial if you are unable to tolerate or benefit from other treatments.
- Experience early menopause or have estrogen deficiency. If you had your ovaries surgically removed before the age of 45, stopped having periods before the age of 45 (premature or early menopause), or lost normal ovarian function before the age of 40 (primary ovarian insufficiency), your body has been exposed to less estrogen than women who go through typical menopause. Estrogen therapy helps reduce the risk of getting certain health disorders including osteoporosis, heart disease, stroke, dementia, and mood swings.
The Benefits of Menopause Hormone Therapy
As more studies are done, the medical practitioners’ perspectives on the importance of hormones are shifting. Experts are still learning about HT. Although newer studies have provided some clarity, they do not address all of the challenges that a single woman encounters. Only she, with the assistance of her healthcare experts, is capable of doing so.
After consulting with her doctor, a woman’s decision to use a specific hormone product will be influenced by several aspects, including her age, her risks, her preferences, available treatment options, and the cost of the product. Only after thoroughly assessing her condition, can a woman decide if hormone therapy is right for her.