What is hormonal imbalance?
Hormones are chemicals produced by the endocrine glands of the body and released into the bloodstream. An imbalance occurs when there is too much or too less of specific hormones in the body. To understand better, hormonal imbalances are just like a disproportionate amount of salt in a recipe. Too less or too much will both spoil the taste, right? Similarly, slightest imbalances can affect your overall health, including metabolism, sleep cycles, reproductive/sexual functions, heart rate and mood.
Let’s understand the symptoms
In women, symptoms of hormonal imbalances include irregular periods, sudden weight gain or weight loss, excessive hair growth on the face and other body parts, acne, skin tags, pigmentation, and vaginal dryness. A hormonal imbalance in women could indicate the early onset of menopause, thyroid dysfunction polycystic ovary syndrome, primary ovarian insufficiency and even ovarian cancer, among other conditions.
In men, symptoms include the development of breast tissues, erectile dysfunction, loss of muscle mass, infertility, osteoporosis, reduced beard and body hair. A hormonal imbalance in men could indicate testosterone insufficiency, thyroid disorders, prostate cancer among other conditions.
There are also other symptoms that can indicate hormonal imbalances, like constipation or diarrhoea, excessive sweating, increased appetite, increased sensitivity, fluctuated heart rates, fatigue, muscle stiffness, swollen joints and face, frequent urination, depression, anxiety & insomnia.
Get to know the causes better
Common causes of a hormonal imbalance range from diabetes, hypothyroidism and PCOS, to glandular issues and possible tumours – either benign or cancerous. Sometimes, these hormonal changes impact your body shape and mood, which if left untreated, could turn into chronic health problems. In women, hormonal imbalances are seen more commonly during puberty, pregnancy, PCOD, breastfeeding, or menopause.
Is hormonal imbalance treatable?
Early diagnosis, appropriate medication and lifestyle changes can be successful in addressing hormonal imbalances. There might not be a direct medicinal route to all such issues but constant lifestyle management can save you from this menace. Many people ignore the symptoms and hesitate in seeking medical help which worsens their health conditions. With the changes in body and mood, there is often a rise in stress, which only affects adversely.
Remember, hormones are as potent as whiskey but twice as sneaky. So, it is important to keep the balance!
Talk to a gynaecologist about any new or unusual symptoms that are not typical of your personality or body. You can stay home and consult online with India’s top specialists via chat, audio or video calls on the MFine app.