As the saying goes, death and taxes are inevitable. For women, menopause is also inevitable. Menopause and the time leading up to it, known as perimenopause, can cause a variety of problematic symptoms for some women. These issues include:
- Hot flashes
- Low libido
- Weight gain
- Sleep issues
- Mood swings
In many cases, these symptoms are due to either a fluctuation or a drop in hormone levels. Eventually, these symptoms subside. Unfortunately, they can last for 10 years for some women.
Increasing or balancing hormone levels, namely estrogen and progesterone, can reduce these problems so you can enjoy your life again.
One of the most effective ways to treat problematic menopausal symptoms is hormone replacement therapy. There are two types of hormone replacement therapies: bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) and traditional hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
At the Center for Women’s Health in Wichita, Kansas, Sharon Breit, MD, and her medical team help shed light on the difference between these two treatments.
What are BHRT and HRT?
Both hormone replacement therapies come in different forms, including pills, creams, gels, and patches, and are made up of different doses and combinations of hormones. BHRT also comes in pellet form, which we inject beneath your skin.
The major difference between BHRT and HRT is the substances used to create them.
BHRT is derived from plant sources that are chemically similar to the hormones your body naturally produces. Traditional HRT products are made from the urine of pregnant horses and other synthetic hormones.
Some women prefer BHRT because of its natural quality and because we can adjust the doses to suit your needs. HRT comes in standard doses.
In both cases, you may have to experiment to find the best product and dosage for your needs.
What are the benefits of BRHT and HRT?
The biggest benefit of hormone therapy, both BHTR and HRT, is relief from menopause symptoms that can interfere with your life. Hot flashes are not just a nuisance. They can interfere with your quality of life and make a good night’s sleep impossible.
Hormone therapy also can help relieve vaginal dryness, pain, and itching so you can resume intimate relations with your partner. Other benefits, studies show, may include, reduced risk of heart disease, dementia, and osteoporosis.
We recommend hormone therapy for women experiencing severe menopause symptoms. It's best to use the lowest dose of hormones needed to treat your symptoms. Dr. Breit can determine the best type, dosage, and delivery method to relieve problematic symptoms.
Are menopausal symptoms wreaking havoc in your life? Are you ready for relief from sleep disturbances and hot flashes?
Call us at the Center for Women's Health to find out if hormone replacement therapy can help you. You can also request an appointment using our online system through this website.