Posts for: March, 2018
These chemical messengers are certainly important for a healthy body and mind. While there are various hormones being produced by the endocrine system, each hormone has a different role to play when it comes to your health.
For women, estrogen and progesterone are the two main hormones to consider when it comes to sexual health, menstruation, and pregnancy. While it is normal for hormone levels to fluctuate a bit here and there, if your hormones are completely off kilter this could lead to fertility issues, painful heavy period and other health problems.
So, what can cause a hormonal imbalance? There are many factors that can play into your hormone levels. These factors include:
- Chronic health problems (e.g. diabetes)
- High levels of stress
- A poor or lacking diet
- Thyroid issues
What are some signs that you could be dealing with a hormone imbalance? While the problems below can also be indicative of other issues, it’s important to talk to your gynecologist about checking your hormone levels if you are experiencing:
- Sleep disturbances (e.g. insomnia)
- Irregular periods
- Excessive fatigue
- Difficulty with memory (feeling “foggy-headed”)
- Gastrointestinal issues (e.g. bloating; nausea; stomach discomfort; diarrhea)
- Mood swings
- Weight gain
- Increased appetite
- Decreased sex drive
As you can see, if your estrogen or progesterone levels are off this can lead to a lot of issues, both physically and mentally. While dealing with a hormonal imbalance can certainly be frustrating, it’s important to know that you aren’t alone. You don’t have to just put up with these symptoms. There are many ways in which your gynecologist can help get your hormones back on track. There are medications, lifestyle adjustments and alternative therapies that can all aid in improving your imbalance.
The most common medication prescribed for treating a hormonal imbalance is a synthetic or bioidentical hormone. Hormone replacement therapy is often recommended for menopausal women, as estrogen and progesterone production begins to slow considerably around this time.
If you suspect that you have a hormonal imbalance, it’s important that you have an OBGYN in which you can trust to get to the bottom of the symptoms you are experiencing. It’s important to listen to your body so you know when things are amiss.
An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that develops on one or both ovaries. This is a common condition that affects most women at some point during their childbearing years. Many times, ovarian cysts won’t cause any symptoms at all; however, if the cyst is larger you may experience some abdominal pain, bloating, nausea or pain with intercourse.
You may find that ovarian cysts appear more often around your menstrual cycle. They are also more likely to develop in those with hormonal imbalances, those taking fertility treatments, women who are pregnant, women who have endometriosis and women who have a history of ovarian cysts.
Most ovarian cysts are completely harmless and will go away on their own without the need for special care or treatment; however, if a cyst ruptures this can cause some pretty serious symptoms that should be addressed right away. If you are dealing with sudden or severe abdominal pain, or if you have abdominal pain that is accompanied by vomiting or a fever then you need to call your gynecologist for immediate care.
There are different kinds of cysts that can develop on the ovaries. The most common type is called a functional cyst. Ovaries naturally grow fluid-filled sacs called follicles, which release the egg each month and are also responsible for producing the hormones estrogen and progesterone; however, if the follicle keeps growing it will turn into a functional cyst. Most functional cysts are nothing to worry about and often go away within a few months.
There are other types of ovarian cysts that can develop and that aren’t influenced or brought about by menstruation. These cysts include:
- Dermoid cysts
It is possible for dermoid cysts and cystadenomas to become large enough to cause the ovary to shift or even twist. If the ovary twists this is called ovarian torsion. This condition often causes severe and sudden abdominal pain on one side and it requires immediate medical attention.
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent ovarian cysts from happening; however, if you do experience ovarian cysts, coming in for a routine gynecology checkup can help pinpoint this issue early on. If you notice any changes in your health or experience new or worsening symptoms it’s important to call your OBGYN.