Progesterone Use After Menopause

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According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, 50 million women in the United States have reached menopause. For many women, the time after menopause may lead to uncomfortable symptoms and progesterone deficiency. Knowing how to treat this deficiency after menopause may be the first step toward finding relief from problematic symptoms.

Significance

During a typical 28-day cycle, a pre-menopausal woman will typically experience a surge of progesterone immediately following ovulation that lasts through the end of her cycle. This surge of progesterone helps to balance out estrogen and prevent subsequent ovulation; however, in post-menopausal women who no longer ovulate, this lack of progesterone could cause a hormonal imbalance. When progesterone isn't around, estrogen can become dominant, which can affect overall health and well-being.

Effects

The University of Maryland Medical Center says that during menopause, women can experience a wide array of uncomfortable symptoms, including hot flashes, cold hands and feet, vaginal dryness, insomnia, mood changes and a gain in abdominal fat.

Dr. John Lee, author of "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Menopause," says that women deficient in progesterone may experience swollen breasts, depression, low thyroid, fibrocystic breasts, water retention, weight gain and loss of libido in addition to other menopausal symptoms.

Progesterone Therapy

Lee recommends natural progesterone cream to treat estrogen dominance and progesterone deficiency. Lee says using progesterone as a natural source of hormone replacement therapy may be a safer alternative to chemically derived, traditional hormone replacement therapies (HRT). Progesterone creams come from plant fats and oils and a substance called diosgenin, a steroid found in wild yams used to synthesize various hormones.

Application

Natural progesterone comes in the form of a cream. Apply this cream to your face, hands, chest, abdomen, inner arms or inner thighs. For better absorption, rotate application sites. Apply one-quarter teaspoon twice per day from the sixth day of the month through the rest of the calendar month.

Considerations

Although Lee says natural progesterone essentially has no side effects and a one-time overdose is practically impossible, he recommends not exceeding the recommended dosage because it may cause a hormonal imbalance.

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