Most of us have heard about hot flashes and mood changes during menopause, but what about hair thinning? Many women experience hair loss during menopause, but hormone replacement treatment may be able to help. Thinning hair during menopause can seriously affect your sense of well-being and your self-esteem. However, you’re not alone with menopausal hair loss. An estimated 21 million women in the U. S. will experience hair loss at some point in their lives, many of them during and after menopause. Our providers can help you determine underlying causes of hair thinning during menopause and help you find personalized treatment plans to help you feel better.
Hormone replacement treatment can help improve your quality of life during menopause.
What Causes Hair Loss During Menopause? Why Could Hormone Replacement Treatment Help?
During menopause, you’re likely experiencing a lot of changes, from irregular periods to night sweats and mood changes. Thinning hair can also occur in post-menopause. Many women notice that hormone replacement treatment can help reduce hot flashes and may even help their hair. However, what is it about menopause that makes your hair more vulnerable? In many cases, it’s hormones.
Estrogen and Progesterone
Estrogen and progesterone are hormones in your body that perform a lot of functions. For example, they’re responsible for menstruation and can help keep your bones strong. These hormones also help with hair growth. Estrogen and progesterone can help keep your hair in the growing (anagen) phase. Therefore, these hormones can help your hair stay on your head longer and may even help your hair grow faster. This may be why many women notice their hair thinning starts to improve with estrogen replacement therapy.
During menopause, your estrogen and progesterone levels naturally start to decline. This is what causes your periods to become irregular and eventually stop. Low progesterone and estrogen are also often to blame for thinning hair during menopause. Hair loss from menopausal hormone deficiencies can take many forms. Most women notice thinning throughout their scalps, which may be visible when you part your hair or you might notice a thinner pony tail. You may also notice thinning along your hair line, but this is less common for women. Low levels of estrogen and progesterone means your hair may start to fall out sooner and grow more slowly. The goal of hormone replacement treatment during menopause is to help your body attain healthy, balanced hormone levels, which is why many women may notice changes in hair thinning once they start treatment.
Declining estrogen and progesterone levels during menopause can also lead to having higher than usual testosterone levels, as your hormones may become imbalanced. Generally, your body has more estrogen and progesterone than testosterone. Just like other hormones, your testosterone levels decline with age as well. However, in some cases, your estrogen and progesterone levels may decline so quickly that your testosterone may become more dominant in your body. Even if your testosterone levels are the same or within healthy ranges, without estrogen and progesterone to keep testosterone in check, you may experience changes related to this imbalance, including thinning, fragile hair.
Testosterone can also affect your hair, as certain forms of testosterone your body produces can shrink hair follicles. The most common culprit is dihydrotestosterone, also known as DHT. When testosterone becomes out of balance with estrogen and progesterone, your body may have higher concentrations of DHT, which may affect your hair. Shrinking hair follicles can make your hair finer, or smaller in diameter, which can make it more brittle. This can make your hair weaker overall, as the individual hair strands that you grow are more delicate. You may notice your hair breaks easier than it used to, or that your pony tail is thinner. In these cases, hormone imbalance treatment for your other symptoms may also help your hair become stronger.
However, hormones aren’t all to blame for thinning hair during menopause. Other common symptoms of menopause can also lead to hair loss. For example, stress is a common cause for hair loss and thinning for women at any age. Stress can cause your hair follicles to get “stuck” in the dormant phase of hair growth. If this happens, you may notice thinning throughout your scalp.
Many women experience high levels of stress during menopause. For example, hormone imbalances can lead to anxiety and depression symptoms. Another reason many women feel more stress during menopause can be due to other symptoms like hot flashes or difficulty sleeping. Not only can this affect your overall health, it can also lead to thinning hair.
How Can Thinning Hair Affect Me?
While thinning hair itself doesn’t usually affect your physical health directly, there are many ways hair loss can negatively impact your well-being. One study showed that 55% of women who were experiencing some form of hair loss also experienced symptoms of depression. In this same study, about 89% of those women noticed improvements in their depressive symptoms after receiving treatment for hair loss. Many women notice they have lower self-esteem, confidence, and negative body image after experiencing hair loss.
The problem with hair loss during menopause is that it doesn’t just signal hormone imbalances or extra stress, it can also cause negative consequences for your mental, emotional, and social health. Many women notice that they’re less likely to engage in social activities if they experience menopausal hair loss. They may also feel anxiety and stress about their hair. Over time, this can also affect your overall well-being and quality of life. Therefore, if you’re experiencing thinning hair, it’s important to talk to your doctor. If you’re experiencing other symptoms as well, our provider may recommend hormone replacement treatment.
What Role Does Hormone Replacement Treatment Play in Hair Thinning During Menopause?
Hormone replacement treatment during menopause may help with thinning hair if it’s related to hormone changes. Our provider may prescribe estrogen replacement therapy to help bring your hormones back into balance and back up to healthy baseline levels if you have low estrogen during menopause. This may help your hair in a few ways.
First, as we learned, estrogen plays a significant role during hair growth. Increasing estrogen levels during hormone replacement treatment may help your hair stay in the growing phase for longer than it would without hormone injections. It can also help your body keep testosterone levels in balance to help reduce the shrinking effects testosterone can have on hair follicles. In addition, some studies show that if you start hormone imbalance treatment early on for menopause symptoms, it may help you maintain your current hair density. This can help you reduce how much hair you lose throughout the course of menopause.
Also, hormone replacement treatment can help with symptoms that may cause stress, which can also contribute to hair loss. Hot flashes, night sweats, sleep difficulties, and mood changes can all play a significant part in high stress levels during menopause. However, estrogen shots can help reduce these symptoms and can also help you manage them more easily. This often results in lower stress levels, which can also help with hair loss when it is stress-related. Therefore, if you notice symptoms of menopause that are affecting your quality of life, it’s important to reach out and discuss your options.
Let’s Talk About Hormone Replacement Treatment for Menopause
At HerKare, our focus is to help women feel their best with personalized health care solutions. We understand the many ways menopause can impact your life, so we work with you to find treatments that are tailored to you. Our providers take the time to listen, then we’ll work together to find ways to help you improve your physical, emotional, and sexual health. We’re here to help you enjoy life, not just push through unwanted menopause symptoms. Schedule an appointment online today!
When you notice changes in your period, a hormone doctor may be able to help. Short, irregular periods may indicate hormone imbalances, like low progesterone. A simple blood test can help your hormone doctor determine if you have low progesterone levels. If this is the case, they may recommend a personalized treatment option to help you get back on track and reduce your risk for more serious complications.
Your hormone doctor listens to your concerns about short or irregular periods and helps you find personalized solutions.
What Can My Hormone Doctor Do About Irregular Cycles?
Your hormones help control your periods, which is why visiting your hormone doctor may help if you notice changes in your menstrual cycle. Progesterone plays a pretty significant role in your cycles. After ovulation, when your body releases an egg for fertilization, your body begins to produce progesterone. This helps thicken the lining of your uterus to prepare for pregnancy. However, if you don’t become pregnant, then your body decreases your progesterone levels and your period begins. This part of your cycle, between ovulation and your period is called the luteal phase. This phase typically lasts between 12 and 16 days. By contrast, anything less than 11 days is considered abnormal and could be due to low progesterone levels.
However, progesterone isn’t just for pregnancy. Research shows that progesterone helps with bone health and may help you sleep better. Also, progesterone can help keep your estrogen levels in check to prevent health complications from too much estrogen. Therefore, if you notice that your periods are shorter than normal or starting to become irregular, your hormone doctor can help determine if your hormones are the cause.
If you also notice these other symptoms, you should also mention them to your hormone doctor:
- Spotting between periods
- Low libido
- Mood changes
- Frequent urinary tract infections
- Frequent vaginal infections
These can all be signs of low progesterone, which can contribute to short or irregular periods.
The Role of Progesterone Replacement Therapy
If you do have low progesterone levels, your doctor may recommend progesterone replacement therapy. This treatment can help get your periods back in check, reduce symptoms, and help you feel better overall. Also, if your periods become irregular during the transition to menopause, your doctor may recommend bioidentical progesterone and estrogen to help reduce symptoms like hot flashes and mood changes to help you stay comfortable and feel great.
At HerKare, we provide advanced, personalized healthcare for women at every stage of life. We are a woman owned and managed clinic where women can feel heard and empowered to improve their health. Our physicians work with you to find treatment solutions based on your needs and lifestyle, whether you need help with diabetes management or testosterone replacement therapy. Schedule an appointment online today to address your symptoms and start an individualized treatment plan.
Low estrogen during menopause can cause many undesirable symptoms. For example, many women notice that sex becomes painful after menopause due to low estrogen levels. Between 17-45% of postmenopausal women say that sex is painful for them. If you’ve noticed this change in your own life, you are not alone and there are treatments available to help you feel better and enjoy intimacy again.
Low estrogen during menopause can affect your life in many ways, but treatments can help you feel your best.
How Low Estrogen Can Make Sex Painful
Low estrogen during menopause can cause many physical symptoms that can affect your sex life. For example, decreased estrogen levels can cause your vaginal tissues to become dry and thin. This may make you feel a sense of dryness, “tightness” or even unbearable pain during sex. You may also notice soreness or a burning sensation in your vagina or vulva after sex. Vaginal dryness due to low estrogen can even lead to tearing, bleeding, or inflammation.
However, painful sex during menopause isn’t all physical. Once you notice that sex can hurt, you may notice other symptoms that make it even worse. For example, fear of pain during sex can make it difficult to become aroused and create anxiety around intimacy. This can lead to even more vaginal dryness. Also, the anticipation of uncomfortable sex can sometimes make you involuntarily tighten your vaginal muscles. This is called vaginismus and can make sex hurt even more. Therefore, painful sex during menopause can become a cycle that is hard to break. However, our doctors are here to help you treat these symptoms so you can get back to feeling like yourself again. One option is hormone replacement therapy.
Hormone Replacement Therapy May Be Able to Help
If sex is painful due to low estrogen levels, hormone replacement therapy may help with your symptoms. Estrogen injections may help with vaginal dryness and help prevent thinning vaginal walls. Painful sex can affect your health in many ways. For example, you may feel generally anxious or depressed, experience low self-esteem, and you may even notice it affects your relationships. However, seeking help can help you avoid these negative consequences and help you take pleasure in your sex life again.
Hormone imbalance treatment during and after menopause can help improve your vaginal health and combat vaginal dryness, irritation, and painful sex. Hormone replacement during menopause may even increase your libido and fight off other symptoms that affect your quality of life like mood changes and anxiety. These benefits can all lead to more enjoyable sexual experiences. Therefore, if you’ve noticed that intimacy is painful, talk to your doctor about treatment plans that may be able to help.
At HerKare, we provide personalized health care for women. We understand that your sex life, physical health, and mood are all important to your wellbeing. Our providers listen to you, help you identify underlying causes of your symptoms, and then collaborate with you to find a treatment plan that fits your lifestyle. Schedule your appointment online today to take the first step toward feeling better. We are here for you.
While a lot of discussions about menopause focus on estrogen levels, you should also talk to your hormone doctor about your progesterone levels. Estrogen and progesterone work together to perform some vital functions in your body and help keep you healthy. While progesterone is typically associated with pregnancy, your hormone doctor should also monitor your progesterone levels as you age and during menopause.
Progesterone and estrogen work as a team to help you feel good. Talk to your hormone doctor about your progesterone levels and how they could be affecting your wellbeing.
What is Progesterone?
Progesterone is a hormone that your body produces in the ovaries and the adrenal glands. It helps regulate your menstrual cycle, your libido, and the lining of your uterus. During perimenopause, low progesterone levels can cause irregular or heavy periods and PMS symptoms. Therefore, if you notice these symptoms during perimenopause, your hormone doctor may recommend hormone replacement to help reduce your symptoms.
Some symptoms of low progesterone include:
- Sore breasts
- Spotting between periods
- Vaginal dryness
- Mood changes
- Low libido
- Low blood sugar
Progesterone also plays a crucial role in menopausal hormone replacement therapy. For women who haven’t had a hysterectomy and still have a uterus, your hormone doctor will likely recommend both estrogen and progesterone replacement therapy to help protect your uterine lining. The lining of your uterus, the endometrium, can become too thick if your progesterone levels are low. This can lead to an increased risk for uterine cancer. Therefore, progesterone plays an important role in menopause treatment for many women.
Talking to Your Hormone Doctor About Low Progesterone
In addition to protecting your uterus, progesterone hormone replacement can help reduce many of the symptoms of menopause. Your hormone doctor may recommend estrogen and progesterone therapy for common symptoms that women experience during perimenopause and menopause. For example, they often help with hot flashes, “brain fog,” vaginal dryness, and mood swings.
Your hormone doctor may prescribe bioidentical progesterone and estrogen to help reduce your symptoms. Bioidentical hormones are natural hormones created from plant products. For many women, bioidentical hormone injections are more convenient and effective than pills, creams, and suppositories. Additionally, they offer your hormone doctor the ability to adjust your dosage in a way that hormone replacement pellets don’t allow. Therefore, if you’re feeling worn down by menopause symptoms, consider bioidentical hormone therapy to help you feel better again.
At HerKare, we take a holistic approach to your health and wellness. This means that we don’t just diagnose you and develop a treatment plan, we take your lifestyle and who you are as a person into account. Our team is here to help you improve your quality of life, and we believe the best way to do that is to tailor your treatment plan to you. At HerKare, we collaborate with you to help you improve your wellness. Schedule an appointment online today so we can help you feel great again. We are here for you.
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