Hormone Replacement Therapy is a treatment which helps in producing estrogen and progesterone hormones for a woman. Read everything about this therapy here.
Hormone Replacement Therapy helps make estrogen and progesterone – two of the most important hormones for a woman’s reproductive system. These hormones can affect the health of your heart, vagina and bones.
Hormone Replacement Therapy is used to treat menopausal symptoms by balancing estrogen and progesterone levels in women. It replaces the hormones that a woman’s body is unable to make after menopause. This therapy relieves symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, vaginal discomfort, loss of sex drive, bone thinning, night sweats and stress incontinence. It also alleviates the risk of osteoporosis.
Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy
Hormone Replacement Therapy is very effective in providing relief from menopausal symptoms. The major benefits of HRT involve:
- HRT helps ease vaginal symptoms such as dryness, itching, burning and discomfort.
- It relieves menopausal symptoms such as night sweats and hot flashes. According to research, it can also reduce the risk of colon cancer.
Risks of Hormone Replacement Therapy
The benefits of HRT are much greater than the risks involved in it. Some early studies in the medical field indicated an increased risk of heart diseases, breast cancer and stroke in women who went through the therapy or took estrogen and progestin together as supplements. The risks based on these studies involve:
- Breast cancer
- Blood clots
- Endometrial cancer
Some studies have also shown that age plays an important role when it comes to these risks. Women over the age of 60 are more likely to suffer from the above-mentioned conditions. Other factors such as the dosage of estrogen and progestin can increase or decrease the risk of getting these diseases.
Who Should Go for Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Women can undergo HRT if they experience symptoms associated with menopause. Women who have lost bone mass or aren’t benefitting from other treatments.
Women who suffered from premature menopause (before the age of 40) or premature ovarian insufficiency (losing normal function of ovaries before the age of 40).
Who Should avoid Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Hormone Replacement Therapy may not be suitable for women who:
- have a history of breast or ovarian cancer
- have blood clots
- have hypertension or high blood pressure – your blood pressure levels need to be in control for you to undergo hormone replacement therapy
- have liver disease
Side Effects of Hormone Replacement Therapy
Within 3 months of the therapy, women might experience some side effects including:
- Indigestion or stomach problems
- Severe abdominal pain
- Vaginal bleeding
Alternatives of Hormone Replacement Therapy
If you are unwilling or too nervous to undergo the therapy, you can opt for some natural methods to reduce menopausal symptoms. Some lifestyle measures can help reduce their symptoms:
- Some form of physical exercise every day can reduce the symptoms of menopause such as hot flushes and it will also improve sleeping patterns.
- A healthy diet promotes a healthy weight which will ensure you do not put on weight and keep your bones healthy.
- Do not wear tight clothing, wearing loose clothes will prevent hot flushes and night sweats.
- Cutting back on caffeine and not smoking will also help you avoid hot flushes.
- Ask your doctor to recommend a good moisturizing cream for vaginal dryness.
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