From the irritability you feel during the week before your period to the night sweats and hot flashes that come with menopause, women are no strangers to the consequences of imbalanced hormones. While occasional shifts are to be expected, a chronic imbalance can wreak havoc in your life.
Kelly Morales, MD, specializes in women’s health and helps patients at her San Antonio clinic treat and manage harmful changes in their hormone levels. The first step in treatment is getting a clear understanding of what hormones are and what happens when you produce too much of them or not enough.
Hormones are chemicals your body produces to regulate just about everything that goes on. Think of them as chemical messengers that control your body’s cells and systems. They dictate when you’re hungry or full, how soundly you sleep, your rate of growth, and sexual desire, just to name a few of their many roles. That’s why keeping them in balance is so crucial.
Whether you’re going through normal phases of menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause, or you’re suffering from an illness or disease that’s causing your hormones to fluctuate, Dr. Morales can help you get back to normal.
The human body produces many kinds of hormones from different organs, such as the pituitary gland, testicles, ovaries, heart, pancreas, kidneys, thalamus, and hypothalamus. Some hormones are considered proteins, others are called steroids, and yet others are called polypeptides.
But no matter their name or the gland that secretes them, they’re essential for the healthy functioning of your body throughout your lifespan. Here’s what happens to a woman’s body when there is an imbalance:
Signs of estrogen imbalance:
The hormone progesterone is responsible for:
Signs of a progesterone imbalance:
Often called the stress hormone, cortisol is responsible for:
Signs you have too much cortisol:
You need the hormone serotonin for the proper functioning of your nerve and brain cells. Serotonin is responsible for:
Serotonin imbalances are often triggered by medications and supplements. Signs of a serotonin imbalance include:
Although commonly known as a male sex hormone, women also need small amounts of testosterone to:
If your testosterone level is too high, you might notice:
Of course, these are only a few of the many hormones your body produces, but this sampling gives you a good idea of how important they are and the problems they can cause when their levels are off.
When you see Dr. Morales, she begins with a thorough evaluation and examines your health history. She gets to know you and your unique symptoms and then runs tests that will allow her to make an accurate diagnosis. Depending on your symptoms, she may recommend simple lifestyle changes, hormone replacement therapy, or even vaginal rejuvenation to manage your symptoms.
If you think you might have a hormone imbalance, book an appointment over the phone with Kelly Morales, MD, to set up a consultation today.