It’s not a secret that getting through menopause can be a struggle for many women. While a lucky few can manage it without medical intervention, others need the help of the best hormone doctor in Falls Church, Virginia.
You’ve heard of hormone replacement therapy (HRT), but what exactly is it? What menopause symptoms should you know about? How do you know when it’s time to see a hormone doctor? Here, you’ll learn all that and more!
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) 101: What It Is and How It Works
As you age, your body produces less estrogen and other hormones that are necessary to regulate your menstrual cycle. Estrogen also impacts your reproductive function, urinary tract, heart, and blood vessels.
Hormone replacement therapy can prevent or manage many common symptoms of menopause and help prevent bone loss for many patients by replacing lost estrogen or other hormone(s) that cause symptoms when they decline.
As My Hormone Levels Decrease, What Symptoms Might I Experience?
Every woman has a unique menopause experience. You might have one or two menopausal symptoms, or you might have many. If you experience any of the following, you should speak to your doctor about treatment options:
- Chronic headaches
- Difficulty concentrating
- Facial hair
- Hot flashes
- Memory problems
- Mood swings/irritability
- Night sweats
- Sexual dysfunction (vaginal dryness, painful intercourse, decreased libido)
- Thinning hair
- Trouble sleeping
- Weight gain
Can Hormone Replacement Therapy Help With Heart Health?
Yes, it can. Heart disease is the leading cause of death among women in the United States. Estrogen is essential for heart health. Once your hormone levels begin to decrease, it can raise bad cholesterol (LDL) and lower good cholesterol (HDL). HRT can help improve your cholesterol levels, thereby improving the health of your heart.
What Forms of Hormone Replacement Therapy Are Available?
When it comes to HRT, the best hormone doctor in Falls Church, Virginia will have many treatment options. Systemic hormone therapy provides a higher dose of estrogen that is absorbed by the body. You can get the type in pellet, pill, patch, ring, cream, gel, or spray forms.
There is a lower-dose estrogen option too. These are vaginal products used to treat common vaginal and urinary tract symptoms. These products come in rings, creams, or tablets.
Your HRT options may include other hormones as well. Your provider will order lab tests including blood work to check your hormone levels and customize your treatment.
How Long Will It Take to Feel Better Once I Start Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Initially, you might experience side effects from HRT. The most common are headaches, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It can take up to three weeks for your body to adjust to HRT. It can take about three months to feel the full effects of treatment, returning to your “old self” again.
Am I a Good Candidate for Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Before receiving treatment for menopausal symptoms, you need a medical evaluation, including a physical exam. Your hormone doctor will gather information to determine if you meet the necessary criteria for treatment.
If your symptoms are extreme enough to negatively impact your quality of life and you have low bone density, you’re likely a good candidate for hormone replacement therapy.
You’ll Find the Best Hormone Doctor in Falls Church, Virginia at Annandale Ob-gyn!
Our board-certified gynecologists understand how difficult it can be to manage menopausal symptoms on your own, so we’re here to help!
At Annandale OB-GYN, our goal is to provide the highest level of comprehensive and compassionate care to all our patients. Our facility is state-of-the-art, and most of our services can be done onsite. Get the relief you need now – call us today at 703-642-7522 to book your appointment!