To Decoding Your Hormones: How Long Should Your Period Be
Since we only have our own period to compare to, it can be hard to know whether what we experience is normal. Lets run through some normal cycle parameters so that you can determine where you fall:
The length of your periodrefers to the number of days from the first day of your bleed to the last day before your next bleed. A healthy range for your cycle length is anywhere between 21 and 35 days, with the average being around 29 days.
Many of my clients tell me their period is always late because it comes on day 30 . This is a huge misconception: that if your period isnt 28 days, you arent normal. If your period consistently arrives around the same day of your cycle, and it falls within the healthy range of 21 to 35 days, this is your normal, healthy cycle length.
Whether or not you fit this textbook 28 day cycle , the most important factor to consider is whether your normal has changed or not.
Our menstrual cycles are very responsive to stress in our lives and demonstrate this most clearly in the length of our cycles. Stress is not always psychological , but may be physical .
When we are more stressed, our body does not deem our environment to be a safe place to bring a baby in to the world, and can shut down ovulation all together, or delay it until it deems we are safe. The end result of this change in ovulation is a missing period altogether, or longer cycles than your normal. Think this might explain your menstrual cycle problems?
What Is Hormonal Imbalance
Hormones are the chemical messengers of the body that are responsible for controlling many major processes, like metabolism and reproduction. They are produced by the endocrine glands. The three major categories are thyroid, adrenals, and sex hormones, and they all work together. When one of these glands produces too much or too little of hormones, it leads to a hormonal imbalance in the body as the other glands have to pitch in, which puts a strain on them and can lead to more imbalance.
If you are among those who are looking for natural options to treat this problem, scroll down. Given below are different ways in which you can treat hormonal imbalance naturally.
Top Five Tips For Rebalancing Hormones
Maintain a healthy diet. Incorporate fresh, organic fruits and vegetables, plus raw nuts and seeds into your diet. Avoid high fatty foods, processed carbohydrates, fried foods, soft drinks, enriched flour, and processed vegetable oil. Avoid non-organic dairy products, which may contain harmful bovine growth hormones, steroids and antibiotics.
Add more Omega-3 fatty acids to your diet. These fats create healthy cell membranes, allowing hormones to bind to the cell more easily. Omega-3 fatty acids also repair receptor sites and keep it in optimal condition. Consider eating more foods with omega-3s or taking a high quality organic oil, such as hempseed or flaxseed.
Keep stress levels down. Studies show that women who mediate daily or practice yoga experience less hormonal swings than those who dont. Rest is important. Many women lead such hectic lives with many demands placed on them that they have little time to let their bodies re-adjust. Find small ways and time to relax. A massage can be a wonderful way to relax and remove the aches and pains caused by a busy lifestyle.
Get enough good quality sleep. Try to get at least 8 hours every night. During sleep the body recuperates and restores. Insufficient sleep is now recognised as a major cause heart disease, stroke, metabolic dysfunction and impaired mental health.
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Warning Signs You May Have A Hormonal Imbalance
No-one wants to be a slave to their hormones but how do you know if they are out of sync and what can you do to restore the balance?
Hormonal imbalances may be to blame for a range of unwanted symptoms from fatigue or weight gain to itchy skin or low mood.
Hormones are chemicals produced by glands in the endocrine system and released into the bloodstream. An imbalance occurs when there is too much or too little of a hormone.
Your hormones are important for regulating many different processes in the body including appetite and metabolism, sleep cycles, reproductive cycles and sexual function, body temperature and mood.
No surprise then that even the slightest imbalance may have a noticeable effect on your overall health and wellbeing.
Levels of hormones naturally fluctuate at various life stages, most noticeably during puberty and in women during the menstrual cycle, pregnancy and the menopause. They can also be affected by lifestyle and certain medical conditions.
What is important is to notice any symptoms and get them checked out by a qualified health professional so that you receive appropriate treatment, whether that involves using medication or complementary therapies, or making lifestyle changes, to restore the balance and your good health.
Here are 10 signs of hormonal imbalance to look out for and what you can do about them:
8. Headaches: Many women suffer headaches due to hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle, pregnancy or menopause.
How Do You Check Hormone Levels
A blood test is the most common method of checking hormone levels.
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Puffy Swollen Or Rounded Face
Though this symptom of hormonal imbalance isnt talked about much, for those who experience it, it can be a major concern. And while this symptom is relatively painless, besides possible tenderness due to the swelling, it may be negatively impacting your quality of life. Sometimes referred to as moon face, this gradual rounding or swelling of the face is a common sign of high cortisol characterized by Cushings syndrome. If your adrenal glands release too much cortisol, theyre unable to properly regulate your blood pressure and inflammatory response. As a result, your body has a hard time keeping your blood vessels functioning appropriately, leading to swelling and a puffy appearance around your face or shoulders.
How To Treat Hormonal Imbalance With Chasteberry
Basically, chasteberry is a good hormonal tonic for females. It helps to regulate the balance of progesterone and estrogen by stimulating the pituitary gland. It is also effective for decreasing premenstrual syndrome and curing other menstrual problems. Furthermore, it also aids in regulating ovulation and promoting fertility. Apart from that, the natural anti-androgen has the ability to protect against prostate cancer and reduce testosterone levels. For this purpose, you can take a 400-500 mg power capsule every day for several months. Also, you can take chasterberry in tincture form. For the proper dosage, consult your doctor. This herb can increase menstrual flow in a few women. Dont take chasterberry during pregnancy, or when you take hormone replacements or dopamine-related medications.
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Three Categories Of Symptoms Often Caused By Hormonal Imbalances
When we see patients at Madison Womens Health for hormonal imbalances, most of their symptoms and concerns fall into three categories:
Lets first discuss these groups of symptoms. Next, well cover the most common hormones your doctor may check based on your symptoms.
What Is A Typical Postmenopausal Bleeding Workup
Routine interventions include a bimanual pelvic examination, a pap smear if you are due, and an ultrasound for the evaluation of the lining of the uterus. And then often an endometrial biopsy is recommended, as quickly as possible. Through these procedures, a practitioner might discover on occasion that the bleeding is the result of a tear in the vaginal wall or from the urethra instead of the uterus. The ultrasound can evaluate the thickness of the uterine wall and lining, and confirm that the ovaries and fallopian tubes look the way they should. What does that all mean? While you are probably familiar with what a pelvic exam, pap smear and even ultrasound are, an endometrial biopsy might sound alarming but it shouldnt scare you. Lets take a look at whats involved.
The word biopsy can strike fear in your heart but remember that a biopsy is often one of the best ways to evaluate a situation. In this case, your provider needs to look at the intrauterine tissue to determine the cause of postmenopausal bleeding. The procedure isnt terribly complicated often it can be performed right at your gynecologists office. Sometimes, an endometrial biopsy is also used after a particular type of abnormal Pap test, if there are endometrial cells on the pap, for example.
How is an endometrial biopsy done and how can I prepare for one?
What happens after the biopsy?
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Skin And Hair Changes
Acne. A sudden increase in acne is one easy way to identify a possible hormonal imbalance. One of the few hormones involved is androgens. Androgens, typically referred to as male hormones, but found in both males and females, regulate your skins sebum production. If your body produces androgens in excess, sebum can build up in your pores and cause a pimple to surface.
Hair loss. The quality and vitality of your hair is also directly related to your hormones. Thyroid abnormalities, for example, may cause dry hair or skin, thinning hair, or brittle nails. Hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and parathyroid disorder can also cause hair loss.
How Do Hormone Tests Work
The simplicity of at-home hormone tests makes them an easy, effective option. After ordering your test, a box will arrive with thorough instructions to collect testing samples.
Depending on the test selected, youll be asked to take a urine sample or blood sample using a finger pricking tool.
Once you finish your test, youll ship your results to a lab for review. Results are typically provided online between 2 and 5 business days after the samples reach the lab.
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Your Hormones Your Health
Feeling bloated, irritable, or just not your best? Shifts in your hormones could be to blame. Hormones are chemical âmessengersâ that impact the way your cells and organs function. Itâs normal for your levels of them to shift at different times of your life, such as before and during your period or a pregnancy, or during menopause. But some medications and health issues can cause your levels to go up or down, too.
Risk Factors And Causes
Hormonal imbalances are multi-factorial disorders, meaning they are caused by a combination of factors such as your diet, medical history, genetics, stress levels and exposure to toxins from your environment.
Some of the major contributors to hormonal imbalances include:
- Food allergies and gut issues: An expanding field of new research shows that your gut health plays a significant role in hormone regulation. If you have leaky gut syndrome or a lack of beneficial probiotic bacteria lining your intestinal wall, youre more susceptible to hormonal problems, including diabetes and obesity. Thats because inflammation usually stems from your gut and then impacts nearly every aspect of your health.
- Being overweight or obese
- High amounts of stress, and a lack of enough sleep and rest
Adrenal dysfunction is the largest cause of the hormonal imbalance with the sex hormones especially because of something called the cortisol steal.
This occurs when cholesterol, which usually helps to make the sex hormones, combines with too much stress and the enzyme 17/20 lyase blocks the conversion the production of cortisol ensues. Cortisol then causes the imbalance of progesterone, estrogen and testosterone, which then decreases the sex drive.
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Treatment For Hormonal Imbalance In Miami Beach
Dont assume that hormonal imbalance is simply an inconvenience to be ignored. Left untreated, hormonal imbalance can lead to diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, depression and anxiety, sleep apnea, neuropathy, and even cancer, to name a few. Dont waste another day feeling off. If you live in the greater Miami Beach area and are looking for a world-class endocrinologist, get to know Dr. Alexander Lurie. Board certified in endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism, Dr. Lurie is committed to helping you and those you love receive proper diagnosis and comprehensive care for your endocrinological conditions. Dont let another day go by. Call Dr. Lurie today at 305-456-4840 or request an appointment online.
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What Are The Types Of Hormonal Imbalance In Men
Testosterone is considered the primary male hormone, along with other hormones like cortisol, insulin, and thyroid hormones. Imbalance in any of these hormones may result in any of the 4 main types of hormonal imbalance in men.
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How Can I Increase My Fertility
Hormonal imbalance is one of the major reasons for infertility, so if adequate steps are taken to change the lifestyle, the whole body gets affected and fertility can be boosted. Few steps that can be taken to boost fertility are mentioned as under:
- The most fundamental step in increasing fertility is the emphasis on a healthy diet like organic fruits and vegetables, raw dairy products, high fibre intake since they contribute in the formation of the hormones, the ovaries, eggs, the uterus and even the baby.
- Getting regular massage, practicing meditation along with intake of pre-natal vitamins is significant for boosting up the fertility levels.
Treatment Of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
At Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia, adolescent medicine specialists are able to manage the majority of cases of heavy menstrual bleeding. However, if necessary, a coordinated approach may be used with specialists from gynecology, hematology, radiology and endocrinology and others to accurately diagnose and treat patients with heavy menstrual bleeding.
Treatment for heavy menstrual bleeding will be recommended by your adolescents physician based on:
- Your adolescents age, overall health and medical history
- Cause and severity of the condition
- Your adolescents tolerance for specific medications, procedures or therapies
- Your adolescents future childbearing plans
- Effects of the condition on your adolescents lifestyle
- Your adolescents opinion or preference
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Natural Ways To Balance Your Hormones
Hormones are chemical messengers that have profound effects on your mental, physical, and emotional health. For instance, they play a major role in controlling your appetite, weight, and mood.
Typically, your body produces the precise amount of each hormone needed for various processes to keep you healthy.
However, sedentary lifestyles and Western dietary patterns may affect your hormonal environment. In addition, levels of certain hormones decline with age, and some people experience a more dramatic decrease than others.
However, a nutritious diet and other healthy lifestyle habits may help improve your hormonal health and allow you to feel and perform your best.
Here are 10 natural ways to balance your hormones.
What Does Cortisol Do To My Body
Almost all tissues in your body have glucocorticoid receptors. Because of this, cortisol can affect nearly every organ system in your body, including:
- Integumentary system .
More specifically, cortisol affects your body in the following ways:
Optimum cortisol levels are necessary for life and for maintaining several bodily functions. If you have consistently high or low cortisol levels, it can have negative impacts on your overall health.
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How To Correct Hormonal Imbalance To Get Pregnant
Content writer, Copywriter, Research Scientist and Human Anatomist
Estrogen and progesterone play a primary role in female sexual characteristics and pregnancy. If they fluctuate abnormally, they can cause reproductive issues. Learn how to treat hormonal imbalance to get pregnant.
There are over 50 hormones identified in the human body. When any of these hormones are affected such that they are produced in larger or lesser quantities, it can lead to what is called hormonal imbalance.
Different things can cause hormonal imbalance it can also present with varying symptoms in different people.
Interestingly, like many other bodily processes, hormones play important roles in pregnancy and reproductive age.
The main hormones active during pregnancy are estrogen and progesterone – these two hormones are also easily prone to fluctuating and causing hormonal imbalance. When this happens, it can affect fertility or even lead to complications during pregnancy.
Fortunately, there are ways to treat hormonal imbalance to increase the chances of pregnancy, such as taking medications and opting for hormonal therapy. Suppose you have health issues like endocrine tumors or polycystic ovarian syndrome, which causes your hormones to fluctuate. In that case, it may help to speak with an endocrinologist about treatment options to prevent reproductive or fertility issues.
Final Thoughts On Hormonal Imbalances
- Some of the most common symptoms of hormone imbalances include unexplained weight gain, fatigue, insomnia, and changes in hair, skin, and nails.
- Root causes of hormonal imbalances include compromised gut health, elevated inflammation, and high stress levels.
- Natural ways to balance your hormones include eating anti-inflammatory polyunsaturated fats, reducing your exposure to endocrine disruptors, getting adequate sleep, and using supplements to fill in any nutritional gaps related to gut health and vitamin D levels.
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