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Finding Safe, Effective Hormone Replacement Therapy in Tampa

If you’re searching for a hormone therapy clinic in Tampa and you’re interested in working with a practice that takes a functional medicine approach to healthcare, then this post is for you.

Here at BioDesign Wellness Center, we’ve spent years studying, training, and writing about hormone replacement therapy, and since we’re focused on the root causes of chronic illness, our approach to treatment tends to be more comprehensive than that offered at a traditional doctor’s office.

Hormone Replacement Therapy in Tampa

First, we’d like to offer some background about hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or simply hormone therapy (HT), which doctors have been prescribing to women since the early 1940s. HRT is prescribed to relieve menopausal symptoms, including menstrual cramps, hot flashes, night sweats, and mood swings.

It also protects against age-related health conditions, such as heart disease, certain types of cancer, and osteoporosis. In fact, by 1992, Premarin became the top-prescribed drug in the U.S., with sales exceeding $1 billion by 1997. (The drug was named Premarin after “pregnant mares’ urine” from which it was derived, and it consisted mostly of estrone — the primary estrogen women produce after menopause.)

Premarin was effective for relieving certain menopausal symptoms, but not without controversy. As early as the 1950s, concerns over possible health risks started to swirl around hormone therapy. In the 1970s, some research showed that taking estrogen increased a woman’s risk for cancer of the uterus.

Women who still had their uterus were prescribed a combination of estrogen and synthetic progesterone (progestin) to protect against this problem.

In the late 1990s, hormone therapy started falling out of favor as new research linked it to possible increased risks for breast cancer, blood clots, stroke, gallbladder disease, and, in women over 65, dementia. As a result, doctors have scaled back their use of hormone therapy considerably.

Now, with a deeper understanding of hormones and the growing availability of bioidentical hormones, practitioners of functional and integrative medicine are offering safer and more effective approaches to restoring healthy hormonal balance in women.

Recognizing the Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance

If you’re a woman around the age of 50, your ovaries gradually produce less and less estrogen, resulting in a hormonal imbalance. You may start to experience hot flashes and notice undesirable changes to your skin and hair texture.

Belly fat swells as your sex life fades, and you can say goodbye to a restful night’s sleep. It’s not just that hormone levels are lower than they were; it’s that they’re out of balance with each other.

You may be experiencing hormonal imbalance if you experience any of the following common symptoms:

  • Anxiety
  • Brain fog (reduced mental clarity/focus)
  • Sadness/depression
  • Dry, wrinkled skin
  • Fatigue (lack of energy)
  • Hair loss or changes to hair texture (such as hair becoming more brittle)
  • Hot flashes
  • Loss of libido (sex drive)
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty falling or staying asleep
  • Spotting between cycles, heavy bleeding, irregular cycles, painful cycles
  • Tender breasts
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Weight gain, especially around the belly

This isn’t a brief phase that you pass through and from which you recover quickly. It can last decades or even the rest of your life if balance isn’t restored.

Many women have no idea when they experience their first hot flash or that they’re standing on the precipice of a major life change that threatens to drain their joy and energy for decades — from peri‑menopause to menopause through post‑menopause.

Finding Bliss in Balance

Menopausal symptoms aren’t related so much to low levels of certain sex hormones as they are to imbalances in sex hormones — too little or too much of one hormone relative to others.

Restoring hormonal balance can put you back in control of your health and reverse many of the signs of aging. With the right balance, you can look forward to living a full life with a sharp mind; restful sleep; stable moods; healthy skin, hair, and nails; ideal weight; and great sex.

Within weeks to months of starting HT, most women can expect to experience the following benefits:

  • Improved sleep quality
  • Healthier skin, hair, and nails
  • Increased energy
  • Enhanced sex drive
  • Elimination of hot flashes and vaginal dryness
  • Reduced anxiety or depression
  • Weight loss

How We Restore Healthy Hormonal Balance at BioDesign Wellness Center

Balancing hormones requires much more than simply adding a little of this or a little of that. Numerous factors play a role in hormone production and how your body processes and uses hormones.

We take a personalized approach that begins with restoring whole health. Hormone therapy is like icing on the cake — optimizing your health so that you feel your very best.

Our process for hormone replacement therapy begins with a free consultation with our hormone specialist manager. This will help us to understand your medical history and your specific health and fitness goals.

We order a blood draw and lab tests, and our doctors carefully review the results. We examine your levels of sex hormones — estradiol, estrone, progesterone, testosterone, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), and luteinizing hormone (LH); levels of thyroid hormones, vitamin D, and blood sugar; and biomarkers that may indicate underlying inflammation.

You will then meet with your BioDesign physician to thoroughly review your lab results and discuss your hormone replacement options:

  • Oral hormone replacement — pills, liquid, or sublingual (under the tongue)
  • Topical creams (absorbed through the skin)
  • Injections
  • Tiny pellets inserted under the skin
  • A combination of the above options

We will advise and use the option(s) you prefer. Regardless of the delivery method you choose, we use bioidentical hormones — hormones that have the same chemical composition as the hormones women produce in their bodies.

Follow-up appointments will be scheduled to monitor and adjust your dose as needed. Hormones are constantly in flux throughout life, so your treatments will need to be adjusted accordingly.

It’s important to be on the right bioidentical hormones for the right amount of time and to shift levels and ratios as needed to optimize your well-being. Our goal is nothing other than to help you look and feel your absolute best, and we achieve that by monitoring and adjusting your treatment to accommodate changes in your biology.

Learn More About Hormone Therapy and Other Treatments to Help with Menopause

As we shared at the outset of this post, the team here at BioDesign Wellness has spent years studying, training, and writing about hormone replacement therapy. Whether you seek treatment from our Tampa functional medicine clinic or another healthcare provider, it’s important that you enter into the hormone replacement therapy process fully informed.

Below is a selection of our recent blog posts on the subject of hormones and hormone replacement therapy. Read a few of these before contacting your healthcare professional about hormone replacement therapy:

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Disclaimer: The information in this blog post about hormones and hormone replacement therapy is provided for general informational purposes only and may not reflect current medical thinking or practices. No information contained in this post should be construed as medical advice from the medical staff at BioDesign Wellness Center, Inc., nor is this post intended to be a substitute for medical counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this post without seeking the appropriate medical advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a licensed medical professional in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.