If you're a woman, you'll likely to begin to notice a number of symptoms related to hormonal changes in your body as you age -- everything from hot flashes and night sweats to the return of acne! While some people feel that it's best to let "nature take its course," there are many women who go into menopause very young due to health reasons -- which means that nature's already a little off-track -- making at least temporary hormone replacement a more natural choice. In other cases, women simply find the symptoms of menopause miserable to endure -- so hormone replacement is the fix.
Whatever your reason for considering hormone replacement therapy, you'll be glad to know that you don't have to rely on synthetic or animal-based hormones like women once had to use. Now, there are bioidentical hormones available. This is what you should know:
What exactly are the benefits of bio-identical hormones over regular prescription hormones?
Bioidentical hormones are molecularly identical to your own natural hormones. While there are bio-identical hormone replacements approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they have the disadvantage of taking the "one size fits all" approach to the formula they use -- which is designed to work for the "average" woman.
In other words, they're designed to work for a statistic -- someone that doesn't really exist, because she'd have to have exactly that statistical average loss of (and need for) the three main hormones produced by a woman's ovaries: estrogen and progesterone.
Compounding pharmacies specialize in treating individuals -- not statistical averages. Compounding pharmacies tailor-make each prescription for each patient according to a doctor's orders. If the formula doesn't quite fit, the doctor can adjust various elements up or down until the exact right combination of hormones is found.
What other advantages do compound bio-identical hormone replacements have?
Because the missing hormones all affect a woman's sex drive, you may experience a renewed interest in sex or feel more sexually fulfilled. The right hormone balance can also help regulate your neurological system, control your blood pressure, settle anxiety and boost your immune system. They can also make sleeping easier -- an issue that many post-menopausal women suffer from on a regular basis.
What are potential problems regarding compounded bio-identical hormone replacements?
There's been a surge in popularity of the compounded hormones thanks in large part to commercial television and internet advertising. This tends to make the FDA leery of the compounded hormones as a whole -- although most women and their doctors are going to have enough sense not to fall prey to someone that promises everything from a cure for cancer and dementia from one simple compound.
In addition, there aren't a lot of studies available that support the claim that compounded bio-identical hormone therapy is easier for women to use and just better suited to many women -- other than the women themselves who make the claims!
However, as long as you're aware of the controversy and take it for what it is worth, you can proceed with confidence that if you and your doctor believe a compounded hormone replacement is better for you, it most likely is.
For more information, talk to your doctor today about bio-identical hormone replacement therapy. Click here for info on choosing hormone replacement treatment.