What is BHRT (Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy) and Who Can Benefit From It?
Hormones are special chemicals produced by glands in our body that act as messengers to tell other parts of the body how and when to work. Because hormones control nearly all tasks in the human body from digestion, growth, appetite, mood, immune function, to libido; a vast variety of symptoms can occur when hormones become out of balance.
Bio-identical hormones are hormones derived from plant sources that are identical to the hormones our bodies naturally produce. These compounds have the exact same chemical and molecular structure as the hormones that are produced in our bodies. Common hormones that are available as bio-identical hormones are estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Bio-identical hormones are used as a treatment for men and women who are experiencing a hormone imbalance. Bio-identical hormones can come in the form of a prescription in a ready-made pharmaceutical form, or can be custom made by a pharmacist based on a doctor’s/NP’s order.
Bio-identical hormones differ from those used in traditional hormone replacement therapy in that they are chemically identical to the hormones our bodies produce on their own. The hormones used in BHRT are plant estrogens (phytoestrogens).
Hormone levels can decrease in both men and women, especially as they age. Some of the key hormones are estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. An imbalance of these hormones can lead to an array of symptoms. It is very common for women who are experiencing menopause to also experience these symptoms. They include:
· Loss of energy
· Loss of muscle mass
· Weight gain
· Sleep problems
· Foggy thinking
· Mood changes
· Memory loss
· Hot flashes
· Night sweats
· Vaginal dryness
· Loss of interest in sex/pain during sex
BHRT can also treat conditions such as osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, insulin resistance, and adrenal and thyroid disorders. It has also been used to improve the symptoms of for those who have undergone cancer treatments that affect their estrogen levels. BHRT may also reduce the risk for diabetes, tooth loss, and cataracts. There’s even evidence that it can help reduce wrinkles by improving skin thickness, hydration, and elasticity.
Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy replaces the hormones that have been lost, balancing the body’s hormone levels and improving any symptoms that were a result of a hormonal imbalance. Bio-identical hormones can be given in multiple forms including pills, creams, patches, gels, shots, and implanted pellets.
At Denver Holistic Medicine, it is our goal to help our patients be their healthiest self and feel their best. We utilize not only BHRT, but a wide range of complementary techniques to re-balance hormones. If you feel like you’re experiencing symptoms that may be a sign of a hormonal imbalance, please reach out to us. We look forward to guiding you on your path to healing.