Most women believe that if they are having regular menstrual cycles their hormones are “healthy”. The idea of routinely checking for hormonal balance when they are young does not cross their mind until pregnancy or menopause occurs. However, many women experience symptoms of hormonal imbalance throughout all stages of life, even in their younger years. Symptoms of hormonal imbalance are common, occurring in 30% of 20-40 year old women. Symptoms of hormonal imbalance include irregular menstrual cycles, acne, fatigue, difficulty with weight management, lack of sex drive, longer than normal menstrual bleeding, intense menstrual symptoms such as painful cramping, excess bloating, and breast tenderness.
Because hormones are critical for feeling and looking your best, testing for balance throughout all stages of life is important. In addition, even if symptoms of hormonal balance are not present, testing your hormone levels when you are young to create a personal baseline for you is important. Having these levels to refer back to after children or menopause can be very helpful in reestablishing hormonal balance and creating a bioidentical hormone replacement therapy program if needed.
Dr. Ruthie Harper draws three important reproductive hormone levels to establish balance with her patients – estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Blood is drawn on Day 12 (estrogen peak) and Day 21 (progesterone peak) of the menstrual cycle to establish healthy function. Testosterone can be drawn on any day of the cycle. If levels are not optimal, a bioidentical hormone replacement program can be implemented with Dr. Ruthie Harper.
Testing and balancing your hormone levels can provide numerous benefits for any young women. Not only does it provide knowledge about personal hormonal baselines that can be used in later years, but it can also be used to implement a bioidentical hormone replacement program if hormones are not balanced resolving issues that take away from the quality of life. Look for our upcoming blog on the importance of stress hormones and adrenal health for feeling your best.