Many people all over the country deal with mood swings, low libido, and trouble sleeping due to hormonal imbalance. BHRT or bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is a popular and natural way of managing a hormonal imbalance. We here at Herrera Medical Group in Lewisville, TX provide this treatment to our patients.
What Is BHRT?
BHRT stands for bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. It’s used to treat people whose hormone levels are unbalanced. The most common issues it treats are those associated with menopause.
Bioidentical hormones are made using plant estrogens that are exactly the same as the ones the body produces. You’ll hear names such as progesterone and estrogen as some of the most commonly produced bioidentical hormones. There are many benefits to taking these hormones. They’re used to treat a variety of issues associated with hormonal imbalances as we age.
8 Things to Know About BHRT
1. Women of Any Age Can Benefit
A big misconception is that women only start experiencing hormonal concerns when they’re going through menopause, but that isn’t always the case. Many women can start to notice sleep disturbances, mood swings, weight gain, hot flashes, and more as early as age 30.
These short-term effects can lead to long-term complications such as an increased risk of osteoporosis, tooth loss, and even diabetes. Replacing reducing hormones at a younger age can help reduce the likelihood of these issues as you get older.
2. There Are Various Delivery Methods
Many people have heard of the pellets that you can get injected into your body, but there is a wide assortment of delivery methods based on your lifestyle. Some of these are:
We’ll work with you to figure out which administration method might be the best choice. Keep in mind that everybody responds differently. We start with a low dose and work our way up to see how you react. The method that we begin with might not be the method that we end on.
3. Symptom Relief Is Quick
As we’ve said, everyone will experience different results at various paces. Many patients report changes in as little as two weeks. This could mean reduced mood swings, less sweating, better sleep at night, or a combination of all of these things. It’s recommended that you wait up to six months to make a firm determination as to whether or not it’s working for you.
During this time, we’ll meet with you, assess how you’re feeling, and make any changes to the dosing or delivery method.
4. BHRT Is Better than Traditional Hormone Therapy
When you see the term “bioidentical” it means that these hormones are the same as the ones your body produces naturally. They’re not produced in a lab and that’s one of the major reasons why we believe it’s a better option than typical hormone therapy.
It is believed that bioidentical hormones are more natural and better based on the actual needs of the individual. Traditional hormone therapy is based on a series of results from a wide assortment of people. Bioidentical hormone therapy is customized and catered just for you.
5. BHRT Is for Men, Too
The conversation generally floats in the direction of women and hormone issues, but men have these issues as well. Andropause is a real yet rarely talked about thing for many men. Many issues can happen with hormones as we age and there are options for men as well.
Testosterone is a necessary part of a man’s muscle growth, healing, bone density, and sexual function. If you’re dealing with a hormone imbalance, it can cause a lot of side effects. You might experience reduced sexual function, depression, trouble sleeping, and mood swings. It’s important to understand that BHRT is for you as well.
6. Preparation Is Easy
Unlike a lot of other treatments, preparing for bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is quick and easy. It’s recommended that you stop taking any blood-thinning medications a week ahead of time, and, of course, consult your personal physician. Talk with them about your goals and what you’re trying to accomplish. Make sure that you’re in good enough health for the therapy.
Other than working with your doctor, there isn’t much else that you have to do. Simply wait for the therapy and start getting on the road to a better version of yourself.
7. Pellet Delivery is Favored
We have discussed various methods of administering BHRT. One method is generally a favorite and that is pellet delivery. This method is easy to use because you only need to get the pellet implanted 2-4 times per year. This means you won’t have to remember to take a pill or apply a cream every day.
There’s also a very steady dose of the pellet because there is no risk of forgetting to take it. Patches can put out various doses and creams are hard to estimate what type of dose you’re getting.
Another reason people prefer pellets is that they’re safer for everyone around you. Gels can rub off on a pet or children causing problems. Pills can always fall into the wrong hands, which could have catastrophic consequences.
8. Everyone Is Different
Each one of us is unique in our own way, and that applies to our hormones as well. It’s impossible to say right away that something is the right therapy for you without the proper research.
Someone may require higher levels of estrogen than someone else while the other person might want higher levels of testosterone. It all depends on what your body is used to, and what you’ve been putting into your body over the course of your life.
Because we’re all different; it’s important to sit down for a consultation and talk about your goals and objectives. We can’t help you unless you do because we need to know what you intend on getting out of hormonal therapy.
How Common Are Bioidentical Hormones
Many of you might wonder if it’s unusual to receive this type of therapy or if something is wrong with you for needing it. We’re here to assure you that you have nothing to worry about, and it’s much more common than you think.
In fact, 1.4 million women use this treatment according to the North American Menopause Society. The number of men is not documented but we believe that to be a comfortable number as well.
What Are Compounded Bioidentical Hormones?
Everyone is different and they respond to certain therapies in a different way. As a result, doctors have put together compounded or mixed hormones that can be developed strictly for one individual.
Compounded hormones are created when a saliva sample is taken from a patient to test their hormone levels. The doctor will determine what combination of hormones is the right choice for them based on the results of the saliva test.
The clear upside to this is that you’re getting hormonal therapy that is designed specifically for you.
Are Bioidentical Hormones Safe to Use?
There are FDA-approved bioidentical hormones and these have undergone tireless research to be deemed safe enough to use. Compounded hormones have not gone through this same testing and little research has been done.
It’s important to remember that a lot of these types of treatments are very new so there isn’t always a ton of research done on any of them. We’ll work with you to determine what the best course of action is to get you the results you want while also minimizing any risks.
How Are Doses Determined?
Anyone who is on hormonal treatment will be monitored closely. Doses are consistently adjusted and you’ll undergo frequent testing to make these determinations. We may require you to adjust your dose based on changes to your hormones but also your behavior.
As hormone levels fluctuate day to day, it’s important that we use blood, saliva, and urine tests to check them. All of these factors combined will determine your dose and how often we need to adjust it.
Start Your Treatment
If you’re serious about making a positive difference in your life and you think that BHRT may be the solution, you might be right. Contact Herrera Medical Group in Lewisville, TX to start making positive steps in the right direction towards your future.