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Symptoms of low estrogen can be confused with symptoms of other problems. Estrogen generally increases during peri menopause, and then declines after menopause.
What is Estrogen?
Estrogen is a term for a group of hormones made in your body. The three major estrogens are: estradiol, estriol, and estrone. Estrogen is produced in your ovaries, adrenal glands, fat cells and skin. Before menopause and peri menopause, your ovaries produce most of the estrogen. These hormones perform hundreds of functions in your body. Estrogen tells your body to increase blood sugar, deposit fat in your breasts and hips, retain water, and help maintain bone mineral density. Estradiol is the most active estrogen before menopause. Estradiol helps protect your bones from losing mineral density. Estrone becomes the primary menopause estrogen and is the most potentially carcinogenic. Estriol is the weakest estrogen, and may be cancer-protective.
When does Estrogen Decline?
Estrogen is not the first hormone to decline before menopause: progesterone is. Estrogen production does not slow down until just before menopause, about a year before your last period. By the time you know you have hit menopause (one year after your last period), your estrogen levels have declined by 40 – 60%.
What are the symptoms of low estrogen in menopause and pre or peri menopause?
During the approach of menopause, your hormones begin shifting and eventually you have much lower quantities of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone after menopause. Low estrogen symptoms are: hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, brain fog, headaches, dry eyes, dry skin, vaginal dryness, loss of collagen, and insomnia.
Several studies have found estrogen levels increased in the years just before menopause, along with lower progesterone levels. This could explain why so many women find relief with progesterone cream in peri menopause.
Natural remedies for symptoms of low estrogen
Natural remedies for symptoms of low estrogen include estrogen creams. Estriol cream is the only one that can be bought without a prescription. Creams containing estradiol and/or estrone require a prescription in the United States. You can have your doctor prescribe different combinations and have a compounding pharmacy make up the cream, or order it through regular pharmacies, as long as you know which brands are bioidentical.
Other ways to replace estrogen include pills, patches and vaginal preparations. Pills must be digested and put unnecessary stress on your liver.
If you are concerned about low estrogen symptoms, one way to find out if you are low in estrogen is to get tested. Some physicians swear by saliva tests, and others by blood tests. You will need to do your own research to determine your preferred method. Once you have been tested and start replacing estrogen, you will need to test periodically to protect against getting too much estrogen.
Sometimes herbs can be used effectively to relieve the symptoms of low estrogen. See black cohosh and herbs for menopause under related pages, below.
Natural Approaches to Menopause
Symptoms of Low Estrogen