Signs You May Have a Hormonal Imbalance
Do you suspect something is not quite right with your body? Sometimes you can’t shake the fatigue or bloat. Or maybe you feel emotionally low no matter what you do. It could be a hormonal imbalance. But trying to figure out what’s going on can be draining, literally.
Various factors can affect a person’s hormones, and it’s not always clear which element is at play when you’re experiencing symptoms. We’ll go over common signs you may have a hormonal imbalance. But first, let’s start by getting a basic understanding of what it means when your hormones are out of balance.
What is a Hormone Imbalance?
Think of your hormones like the postal service – they deliver chemical messages through your endocrine system to different parts of your body. Hormones do a lot of different jobs. They ensure that we have enough energy and have a functioning digestive system. Hormones also assist in muscle growth and cell development. Overall, hormones are an integral part of what keeps our bodies healthy and regulated.
When our hormones are imbalanced and aren’t functioning at optimal levels, it can have a negative impact on how we feel physically and emotionally. If your body produces too little or too much of a hormone, it can skew your body’s ability to function normally.
What Causes an Imbalance?
Everyone experiences fluctuations in hormonal levels at different stages of their life. And there are various reasons why you may be experiencing a hormone imbalance. Here are some of the most common causes.
Depending on your age, your hormone levels will differ. Children and teenagers go through varying levels of hormones and cycles as they are developing. As you age, levels of most hormones such as growth hormone and melatonin begin to decrease, although not all of them do. However, even if they don’t, you may start to feel symptoms as you get older because the hormone receptors in your endocrine system become less sensitive.
Men and women experience different hormonal changes. Males can experience imbalances in testosterone levels as they age. Women can experience imbalances in progesterone and estrogen levels during a menstrual cycle, pregnancy, postpartum, and menopause.
There are certain medications or treatments prescribed to you that can affect your hormone levels. These can include birth control pills, steroids, hormone replacement therapy, or cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation.
Some of the most common medical conditions that can cause these changes are Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), Hyperthyroidism, and Hypothyroidism. These can lead to changes in weight or physical appearance.
Signs to Look For
There are several signs to look for if you suspect you may be suffering from an imbalance. Here are some of the most common.
Have you been experiencing unshakable or unexplainable fatigue? Has it made it difficult for you to complete normal day-to-day activities? Fatigue is associated with several types of hormone imbalances, including a condition called hypothyroidism, in which the thyroid is underactive.
Are you getting frequent and persistent headaches? In females, levels of fluctuating estrogen and progesterone can contribute to the increase of headaches, particularly right before menstruation and during post-pregnancy and menopause.
- Mood Swings and Irritability
Are emotions overwhelming you? Do you experience extreme sadness, anger, or happiness? Women are more susceptible to changes in mood as levels of estrogen and progesterone vary during a woman’s menstrual cycle and pregnancy.
- Sleep Cycle Issues
Do you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep? Is it a struggle for you to settle down to sleep, or do you wake up multiple times throughout the night? Menopause, menstruation, and PCOS can have adverse effects on your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Weight Gain or Loss
Have you experienced a sudden weight gain or weight loss with no significant change to your diet or exercise routine? Hypothyroidism can attribute to weight gain and hyperthyroidism with weight loss.
- Changes in Hair Growth or Thinning
Are you noticing extra or darkening hair growth or a lot of hair falling out when you shower or brush? PCOS can cause an increase in female facial hair growth and hair thinning simultaneously.
- Skin Issues
Is your skin dry, textured, thinning, or marked with acne? Changes in your skin such as extreme dryness, overactive sebaceous glands, changes in skin color, and the texture of your skin could signal a hormonal imbalance. When the sebaceous glands are overactive, they cause an excess of oil production. When not cleaned and treated thoroughly, it can result in blocked pores and acne.
- Increased Anxiety or Depression
Have you been experiencing heightened levels of anxiety or depressive thoughts? When serotonin, one of the hormones responsible for happiness, is low, you can experience a lack of motivation, feel emotionally down, or have trouble concentrating.
Awareness is the First Step!
We just covered some of the most common signs you might have a hormonal imbalance. While it’s not an exhaustive list, it can help you monitor symptoms more intuitively.
Remember, just like our bodies, everyone’s levels of hormones will differ. Make sure to consult with your healthcare professionals if you are experiencing symptoms regularly, if they become debilitating, or if you have continuing concerns.
Have you noticed any signs you might have a hormonal imbalance? Let me know in the comments or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com to make an appointment for a consultation to discuss and test for hormonal imbalances.
Be Well & Thrive!
With Love & In Health,
Sarah Outlaw, MH, MSACN
- For more information on who we are and what we do at Natural Health Improvement Center of South Jersey and Natural Health Improvement Center of Des Moines, browse the rest of our website. We offer Root Cause Nutrition, Nutritional Coaching, Nutrition Response Testing, Functional Nutrition, Herbal Medicine, Flower Essence Therapy, and Homeopathy. We also offer detox services including an infrared sauna, and PEMF (pulsed electromagnetic field therapy mat, and foot bath (DSM office). We are on the front lines of wellness for you! Health starts here!
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