Almost every person will experience hormonal changes during their lifetimes. It’s also common for both men and women to start experiencing symptoms of hormone changes and deficiencies as they age. But how do you know for certain if you’re experiencing a hormonal imbalance?
First, it’s crucial to evaluate your symptoms. In women especially, hormones are a critical aspect of every phase of life—from the beginning of menarche through childbearing age and into menopause. These hormones change over time to meet our body’s changing needs.
But sometimes hormone levels become unbalanced, creating uncomfortable or painful symptoms. At Renewed Vitality, our symptom checker services help people address hormonal problems and feel their best through each stage of life.
Common symptoms of hormone imbalances often include:
The health and growth of your hair is also specifically related to your hormones. Thyroid abnormalities, for instance, can cause a person’s dry hair or skin, thinning hair, or fragile nails. Hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and parathyroid disorder are also known to cause hair loss.
Anxiety or Depression
Nearly 20% of Americans suffer from an anxiety-related disorder, and 7% from a major depressive disorder every year. Women may be at a higher risk due to changes in estrogen levels during menstrual cycles, pregnancy, or menopause that are correlated to worsening depression. In terms of hormones specifically, research on the impact of estrogen receptors in the brain concluded that estrogen reduces the fear response and anxiety levels for both humans and rodents. Higher amounts of estrogen were also correlated with less fearful responses when stimulated by fearful situations.
Heightened Moodiness or Irritability
The hormone estrogen induces an important effect on neurotransmitters in the brain, including serotonin (a chemical that improves mood). For women, fluctuating estrogen levels can cause premenstrual syndrome (PMS) or depressed mood during the perimenopause (the phase before periods stop completely) and the menopause. Men with low levels of testosterone have a higher chance of developing anxiety or major depressive disorder when compared to those with normal levels.
Weight Gain or Loss of Muscle Mass
A wide range of hormone-related conditions can result in weight gain, including an underactive thyroid (when it does not produce enough thyroid hormones that help regulate your metabolism). Hormone-related weight gain or loss of muscle may also result from polycystic ovary syndrome, a problem causing small cysts on the ovaries, and menopause, which creates hormonal changes that can make you more likely to gain fat near your abdomen.
Low Energy, Stamina, or Motivation
While experiencing perimenopause and menopause, a woman’s ovaries gradually produce less estrogen and progesterone, which promotes sleep. Decreasing estrogen levels could also make night sweats worse, which disturb your sleep, contributing to greater fatigue and low energy levels.
Low Sex Drive
Low libido is a common symptom for women going through perimenopause or menopause because of falling levels of estrogen and testosterone. Additional menopausal symptoms include night sweats, fatigue, low mood, and greater anxiety, all of which can also negatively impact your sex life.
Still uncertain whether you’re suffering from hormone imbalances? Take our quick quiz that helps you evaluate hormonal imbalance symptoms. To get started, click here for women and here for men. Truly, the more information you have about your specific hormonal imbalances (triggers, causes, etc.) the better you can heal them moving forward.
If you and your healthcare provider think you may be experiencing hormone imbalances, contact Renewed Vitality today! We are the Reading area’s hormone therapy resource and can help you start feeling healthy and more like yourself again.