The Pros and Cons of HRT

Menopause is a natural biological process all women go through during which they stop menstruating and can no longer bear children. This usually happens when women are in their fifties and above. However, some women go into menopause earlier than others. Regardless of the age when it starts, menopause features some physical symptoms like hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and a reduced sex drive. The symptoms are usually associated with decreased estrogen and progesterone production. HRT is the most recommended treatment for menopausal symptoms.

What is HRT?

HRT is an abbreviation for hormone replacement therapy. The medication replaces estrogen when the body stops producing it during menopause. Doing so restores hormonal balance and eliminates hormone-related symptoms.

Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy

Through replacing the necessary hormones, HRT provides women with the following benefits:

Alleviating Symptoms of Menopause

One of the primary benefits of HRT is that it helps alleviate some of the most common symptoms of menopause. For example, lack of estrogen in the body causes symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness. By replacing this hormone, the treatment helps alleviates these symptoms to restore the woman’s normal life.

  • Lowering the Risk of Osteoporosis

Estrogen plays a significant role in maintaining calcium levels in the bones. When this hormone is too low, the bone calcium levels will decrease significantly, often leading to osteoporosis. Studies have shown HRT to be a very effective method of preventing onset of this condition.

  • Heart Disease Prevention

HRT can also help decrease the risks of heart disease and related mortality among women. This treatment reduces coronary heart disease incidence and death for women.

The therapy can also be used for testosterone replacement in men. This prevents cardiovascular events from androgen deficiency.

  • Lowered Risks of Dementia and Diabetes

HRT or estrogen replacement can also help reduce the risks of dementia. However, this only happens if the treatment is mid-life instead of late-life. On the other hand, HRT can also lower the chances of diabetes by promoting more normal fasting blood sugar levels.

  • Improved Quality of Life

HRT is a powerful part of improving your overall quality of life. By relieving symptoms of reduced hormone levels in the body, the therapy promotes a more balanced life, higher energy levels, and empowerment to embrace daily life. The treatment can also improve quality of life by enhancing moods, promoting better sleep, improved sex life, bettering memory, and enhanced bone density.

Cons of HRT

While this treatment offers numerous benefits, there are some associated risks. Firstly, you must understand that not all forms of HRT are ideal for everyone. This may be because of individual risk factors, pre-existing health conditions, and personal preferences. The risks are also commonly associated with age and the type of hormone therapy used. Below are some of the risks and side effects associated with HRT;

  • Increased risks of developing gallstones or blood clots
  • Increased risks of stroke for women with high blood pressure
  • Increased risk of breast cancer with progestin increases
  • More risks of pulmonary embolism and increased breast tenderness

Depending on the type, other side effects may include;

  • Sleep disruptions
  • Irritability
  • Nausea
  • Bloating
  • Hair loss
  • And skin irritation when it is applied topically

Suitable candidates for HRT

Below are the suitable candidates for HRT:

  • Women suffering from mild to severe menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, itching, burning, and discomfort during intercourse.
  • Individuals experiencing early menopause or estrogen deficiency
  • Women with intense PMS as they get closer to menopause
  • Women with a family history of osteoporosis

You can minimize the risks and side effects of HRT by finding the best product and delivery method for you. Minimizing the amount of medication you take will also help. The trick is to visit a medical professional and attend regular follow-up care. Furthermore, making healthy lifestyle choices like exercising and limiting alcohol can help.

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