Perimenopause, Menopause and Estrogen Dominance

Perimenopause and Estrogen Dominance

In the past physicians have focused mainly on Estrogen when treating the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause.

We know now that progesterone is as important as estrogen in balancing women’s hormones. In order to treat the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause, estrogen and progesterone need to be balanced.

Balancing progesterone levels is especially important for women going through perimenopause. Progesterone levels decrease much earlier then estrogen levels during perimenopause. Most perimenopausal women have enough estrogen, and their symptoms are actually caused by low levels of progesterone, a condition called Estrogen Dominance.

When a women’s estrogen starts to decrease as well, her progesterone has already decreased to a greater degree, so estrogen dominace can occur even when estrogen levels start to drop. Its just that progesterone has dropped to a greater degree and there is a relative estrogen dominance. In addition, if a women is prescribed estrogen without progesterone, this can also cause estrogen dominance.

What happens during perimenopause?
During a normal menstrual cycle, estrogen increases at the beginning of your cycle, peaks at ovulation and then decreases. If the egg is not fertilized it ruptures and releases progesterone, which now is the dominant hormone during the second half of the cycle. Estrogen raises in the first half to promote cell proliferation, and progesterone rises in the second half to oppose estrogen and prepare for the beginning of your next cycle (menses).

The beginning of perimenopause actually occurs when there is a large decrease in progesterone levels after ovulation. This causes estrogen levels, which decline at a slower rate to be high relative to progesterone, resulting in estrogen dominance. Your periods start to become irregular, and you can develop a variety of symptoms, because of an imbalance in your hormones.

Estrogen Dominance can produce the following symptoms:

Irregular bleeding
Weight Gain
Breast tenderness
Hot Flashes
Mood instability (anxiety, depression, irritability)
Trouble sleeping

Fatigue
Low sex drive
Foggy Thinking
Migraines

Prescribing progesterone during the luteal phase can help even out this imbalance.
Once menopause is reached and estrogen levels have declined, women may need estrogen replacement as well. It is important to balance these hormones with optimized dosages.

It is important to have individualized treatment and dosages. At optimal Wellness, our individualized treatment is based on your history, symptoms and comprehensive laboratory evaluation. We prescribe Bio identical Hormones, If you are suffering from any of the above symptoms, call us at 201 485 7930, to see how we can help you address your symptoms of hormone imbalance.