Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME

Menopause Treatment for Gardiner Maine Women – Understanding What you are Going Through

Menopause treatment in Gardiner ME, transparency and understanding are key to any individualized menopause treatment program you may be considering

When it comes to menopause treatment in Gardiner ME, or anywhere for that matter, understanding menopause at a deep level is the first step in choosing the right menopause treatment, doctors, and clinic for you in Gardiner ME, and that means choosing the best menopause clinic serving Gardiner Maine women with physician directed menopause treatment protocols driven by treatments specifically developed for you. You need bioidentical hormone replacement therapy that is as unique as you are, and at IHAC that’s exactly what you get.


Call Us Today: 603.316.4606
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If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME you need a menopause treatment plan and clinic that understands you need an individualized protocol as unique as you are.

Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME – Understanding Common Menopausal Conditions

In China, menopause is called a woman’s “Second Spring”. This is regarded as a beautiful time of celebration, ushering in a phase of renewed energy and focus on self. Yet for the rest of the world, and certainly in America, menopause is poorly understood, much less “celebrated”. It is this lack of understanding among women, and regrettably, by their doctor’s, that lends to so much confusion, mistreatment (let’s call it what it is), and unnecessary suffering for millions of women globally.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. In Gardiner Maine There is a better option for your menopause treatment.

Women looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME can count on IHAC celebrating their Second Spring.

First, let me clarify a key point. The biological process of menopause, the period when a women’s menstrual cycle ceases, is well-studied and extensively documented on paper. What is woefully missing, however, is validation of the woman’s lived experience and access to needed treatment of menopausal symptoms, which at times, can be debilitating. This must change.

For women looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME, IHAC validates your experience and puts an individualized menopause treatment plan together to overcome your challenges.

Throughout this article, our aim is to educate, validate, and offer hope to women not just in Gardiner ME, but everywhere, with regards to menopause treatment. Here, we present a thorough review of the menstrual life cycle of a woman from menses through post-menopause. We will discuss how modern society and the natural flux of hormones have collided to make the menopause transition particularly challenging for millions of women worldwide. We will discuss lab values and methods of interpretation, the most common symptoms of menopause and their causes, and a basic understanding of menopause treatment options available. Our goal is to give you the tools and language necessary to advocate for your health now and into the future

At IHAC we believe women everywhere should be empowered with enough information to be advocates for themselves during their Second Spring, not just those women looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME.

Considering Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME? – Let’s Start at the Beginning

When a young female goes through puberty, gonadotropin hormones known as luteinizing hormone (LH) stimulates the production of estrogen, and follicle stimulation hormone (FSH) signals the creation of follicles and the start of ovulation. This occurs usually around the age of 8-14. Estrogen is a powerful anabolic sex hormone. It plays a vital role in numerous metabolic processes, including the formation of feminine features such as breasts, hips, and triggers the start of menstruation.

The menstrual cycle is mediated by a complex rise and fall in hormones.

The beginning of a woman’s cycle starts on day 1 of menses, and continues for about 13 to 14 days, known as the follicular phase. During this time, follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) is released by the pituitary gland in the brain and stimulates the production of follicles on the ovary. These follicles increase production of estrogen. At ovulation, which occurs about two weeks before the next menses, there is a surge in both FSH and luteinizing hormone which stimulates the release of an egg. Usually only one egg is released by a mature follicle. Estrogen levels are at a peak, and progesterone starts to rise. The egg travels down the fallopian tube into the uterus. The follicle that released the egg forms a temporary mass of cells known as the corpus luteum, which will produce excess amounts of progesterone, which prepares the womb for implantation and pregnancy, including a thickening of the uterine lining and a rise in basal temperature. If there is no sperm to fertilize the egg, the corpus luteum will diminish, and progesterone and estrogen levels will drop which signals the uterus to shed the lining and the start of menstruation. On average, a healthy female will have a menstrual cycle for about 40 years.

Refer to the chart:


Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME – Understanding Perimenopause

This is the stage when a woman starts to notice a shift in, well, everything. Her energy may be plummeting, she has weight gain particularly in the midriff area, mental fog is prominent, libido starts to tank, and she generally may not “feel like herself”. This stage typically starts in the 40’s, but may be as early as 30’s. This is the beginning of the menopausal shift, known as perimenopause. The severity of symptoms varies from woman to woman. Unfortunately, stress is a known trigger to perimenopausal symptoms and in this age of “chronic stress” more and more women are experiencing these hormonal symptoms at a younger age. Perimenopause can last several months or up to a decade before menopause is complete.

So, what is happening in her body?

As a woman’s reproductive years come to an end, her ovaries start to run out of viable eggs. The remaining eggs are resistant to FSH and therefore, resistant to ovulation.

Ovulation then becomes irregular, or absent. In response, the ovaries start to decease their production of sex hormones: estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. This fluctuation of hormones causes a myriad of unwanted symptoms and can be made worse by diet and lifestyle. We will review the most common symptoms of perimenopause and menopause in depth shortly.

Women looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME can count on IHAC to help limit unwanted symptoms from Menopause and Perimenopause.

Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME – When Hormones Fall of a Cliff, That’s Menopause

The natural standard for determining menopause is the absence of a menstrual cycle for 12 continuous months. During the menopausal transition, women’s sex hormone levels take a dramatic drop. Refer to the chart below. Even though this graph is depicted as a smooth transition, the hormones are varying greatly throughout the cycle, but overall, the total amounts eventually decrease.


Menopause Treatment in Gardiner ME – Recap of the Female Hormonal Cycle.

Females are born with two ovaries. Around the age of 8 or so, hormones are released by the pituitary gland in the brain, which causes the ovaries to mature and begin the process of ovulation. As a woman moves throughout her monthly cycle, a complex cascade of hormones rise and fall controlling ovulation and menstruation. This continues for several decades until her ovaries start to slow down due to age, and she enters her menopausal transition which starts with perimenopause. During this time, hormones start to fluctuate. Environmental and lifestyle factors can make symptoms even more severe. This process continues until the ovaries completely stop ovulation, which causes a sharp decline in sex hormones. Once menstruation stops for one year, a woman is now considered post-menopausal.

Whether you are experiencing symptoms of menopause or perimenopause there is help, if you are seeking menopause treatment in Gardiner ME, then IHAC can help.

If this is a natural process, why are my symptoms so bad?

Here’s the truth. Society has not been good to the aging woman. Shall we review?

If you are in Gardiner ME, and looking for menopause treatment, we will be good to you, that’s our promise.

From a young age, women are taught they are not pretty enough, not thin enough, just not enough. This sets many women up for a lifetime of calorie restriction and hyperfocus on excessive cardio exercise, both of which alter hormones. And she may be all of 20.

As a woman looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME leaning on IHAC means, enough is enough.

Then it is practically jammed down a woman’s throat that unless she is excelling in the classroom, reaching for scholarships, striving for the promotions, and climbing that proverbial corporate ladder, she is not woman enough. This hamster wheel leaves women exhausted, full of anxiety and stress, and you guessed it, it alters her hormones.

We know the hormone roller-coaster that comes with pregnancy and postpartum can be very hard on a woman’s body, and y’all, this is a totally natural process.

Now let’s add children into the mix of an otherwise busy lifestyle with demands of work, home, wifedom, friendship, family, society, and all the rest. This leaves the woman depleted and feeling completely inept, and it makes her postpartum hormone recovery that much harder, if not impossible.

Our bodies were never designed to live in chronic stress states. Moments or periods of stress? Absolutely. In fact, our bodies have a very capable stress response biologically designed to keep us alive and our species propagating. But constant repeated stress, day after day? Absolutely not. This leaves women so worn-out, their bodies in a constant state of fight or flight which leads to horrendous symptoms. This has now become the normal. I am not done.

All this running around means that women are not sleeping nearly enough. She is going to bed late after picking up the last of the dishes, or hitting that deadline for her boss, or maybe she is the boss and pushing herself even harder, but regardless, her sleep is sacrificed. This matters especially for women as we know they need more sleep than men. In fact, many women need 8-10+ hours for optimal health, yet most are getting less than 7 hours. As we sleep our bodies restore, heal, and produce human growth hormone which has a powerful effect on our physiology, metabolism, and other hormone levels including insulin and blood sugar control. If a woman’s sleep is depleted, this will fundamentally affect her overall hormones.

Women looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME are in luck, IHAC won’t be adding to the countless hours of things they have to do, with our telehealth platform you can receive the physician directed menopause treatment you need where and when you need it, including the comfort of your home, whether or not that’s in Gardiner ME or not.

The next category, nutrition, especially stings to talk about with woman. Because we KNOW that nutrition affects our health, but here’s the thing, the more we are stressed out about our nutritional choices, or life in general, the more we tend to eat comfort food that doesn’t serve us. It is a wicked loop. Most nutrition is devoid of meaningful nutrients. Even the fruits and vegetables have a fraction of the minerals they once had, and this is due to modern farming practices. As mentioned earlier, calorie restriction has done tremendous damage to the female population, and that is just from a hormonal viewpoint let alone the emotional and mental damage it has caused.

The standard American diet is high in processed food derivatives, high in sugar and refined carbs. This significantly affects a woman’s ability to metabolize food in a beneficial way, further driving her aging hormones into a challenging tailspin.  

If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME and want or need to combine a nutrition program into your menopause treatment as well, that’s no problem. With our telehealth platform you have access to a variety of supplemental programs and specialists to continue your journey.

We can’t forget that every moment of the day, her body is dealing with an onslaught of chemicals either from the pollutants in the air she breathes, the plastic chemicals leaching into her water bottle, the food dyes mixed in with her snacks, or the parabens and phthalates in her lipstick. It is a nightmare. I am not trying to be macabre, but the reality is, this is a consequence of modern society. Most of these chemicals fall under the category of endocrine disrupting chemicals, or EDCs. Which means exactly as it sounds, they disrupt her body’s ability to naturally create and bind with hormones. They drive inflammatory responses in her body which further adds fuel to the fire.

When you seek out menopause treatment in Gardiner Maine you need to make sure your menopause Dr. and Clinic implementing your BHRT understands the myriad of environmental factors that also complicate the process and takes them into account.

What makes all of this especially offensive to the woman’s lived experience is that no one believes her! She is regarded as irritable and possibly irrational by her family. The experience at her doctor’s office isn’t much better. It is clear physicians think the symptoms of menopause are primarily a mental health challenge as SSRI’s are still the first-line prescription for symptom management. Women may be told to go on a diet, or simply told to suck it up “this is aging”.

So yes, the menopausal transition is a natural process, but with all these factors assaulting the modern-day woman’s body, there is no wonder now more than ever, women are looking for help. Well help is here.

If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner Maine and you are tired of being ignored, or your concerns are being diminished, or worse, not heard at all by your primary care physician, then turn to IHAC. We listen and can help.

Menopause Treatment – A Very Important Discussion on Lab Values

Before I dig into common menopausal symptoms and their causes, let’s pause to have an important discussion on lab values. This topic is one of the biggest barriers women have to discussing their conditions with their doctors, and it prevents their ability to advocate for their health. There is a lack of understanding shared by the woman and doctor alike, and that’s not a great combination for optimal patient care. So, let’s have a chat.

Here are the reference rages for “normal” hormonal lab values for a female.


19-144 pg/ml follicular phase
64-357 pg/ml mid-cycle
56-214 pg/ml luteal phase
<31 pg/ml postmenopausal


2-45 ng/dl


<1.0 ng/ml follicular phase
2.6- ng/ml 21.5 luteal phase
<0.5 ng/ml postmenopausal


This list is by no means all inclusive, and there are a variety of other upstream hormones you could have checked. Your thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) should be evaluated in conjunction with any hormonal lab panel, and doctors do routinely order this lab. For the sake of our menopausal discussion, focusing on these three primary sex hormone values will be most helpful for your comprehension and ability to advocate for your care.

Whether you are searching for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME or simply looking for answers to explain how you are feeling, understanding lab values goes a long way to helping you advocate for your own health.

As you can see, there is a lot of fluctuation in lab values throughout a woman’s cycle. Moreover, the reference ranges vary from laboratory to laboratory making interpretation even less standardized. Given that there is such a wide range as to what is “normal”, even if a woman succeeds in getting her doctor to order hormonal labs, nine out of 10 times, the results will come back “all normal”. This can be completely frustrating and invalidating for the woman who is desperately looking for answers to explain and highlight the changes she is experiencing in her body. At IHAC, we hear you, and we know your body is going through a lot.

If you are in Gardiner ME and are looking to treat symptoms of menopause and are running into road block after road block because your Dr. won’t perform hormonal labs, or refuses to consider that the “normal range is to ambiguous” to brush away your symptoms as “part of life or the aging process that can’t be dealt with” than you need to talk to us, we listen, we hear you, and we know you need help.

When we evaluate labs, here are some of the factors we are considering:

  • What are your symptoms? How are your energy levels? Your cycle? Your libido? Any vasomotor symptoms? Vaginal health? Any shifts or resistance to change in body composition? Any mental fog? Your sleep? What is your menstrual and health history? Your lived experience is by far the most important factor and at our clinic. You will be heard, and you will be helped.
  • What is “normal” for your neighbor may not be what is ideal for you. Given that we know hormonal derangements are common, and that globally hormonal values (such as testosterone) have declined by 50% in the last 50 years, we recognize that today’s population sample is likely not optimal.
  • We consider hormonal ratios. If a females estrogen levels are high, while their progesterone levels are particularly low, this can cause an imbalance. As a woman ages, both estrogen and progesterone will naturally decline in balance, however, estrogen dominance, which is a common condition of modern life, can drive this ratio well out of balance resulting in unwanted symptoms such as weight gain, hair loss, and emotional instabilities.
  • We are passionate about testosterone therapy for women. Looking at the lab values, you will notice that the normal range for testosterone is 2-45 ng/dl which is particularly interesting. Two is almost zero. This suggests that nearly a complete absence of testosterone is just fine for a woman. Wow. Free testosterone levels also need to be evaluated when considered testosterone affect. Free Tt is the biologically active portion of testosterone that is available to bind with androgenic receptors (ARs) on target cells. Some people may have “normal” total testosterone, but do not have adequate free T and therefore experience low testosterone symptoms. This can be caused by a variety of factors including lifestyle, alcohol, medication, and systemic inflammation.

Menopause Treatment – The Common Symptoms of the Menopausal Transition.

On average, sometime in her 40’s, a woman may start to feel it. It’s a shift in her hormones, whether she realizes it or not. The first few symptoms typically present as a decrease in her metabolism and increase in body composition, particularly in her midriff. No matter what she does, her workout and nutritional habits are no longer having the same affect they once did. The brain fog starts to take over, which makes recalling a grocery list item, or a family name, difficult. It’s not that she can’t remember, it’s the recalling of details that now takes so much more brain effort, and it’s noticeable. Her libido, which was once good and satisfying to her, has now plateaued so much so there are times she rather not be touched at all. Like, at all. These symptoms and more continue to stack on the backs of women until she finally realizes, “is this my new normal?”. In the final phases of menopause, her hormones have depleted so significantly, vasomotor symptoms like night sweats and hot flashes, are running wild. Vaginal dryness and atrophy now make the possibility of sexual intimacy even less likely. As true as all this is, it is not all doom and gloom. Treatments are available, and through clinical innovation, more than ever, women can access them.

If you are in Gardiner ME and suffer from Menopause or Perimenopause symptoms and you want help, don’t take no for an answer, or call IHAC for treatment.

Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) and optimization can relieve the most common symptoms of menopause. But to have a better appreciation for the benefits of BHRT, let’s dig into the symptoms of menopause a bit more. You deserve to know that those unwanted symptoms you are experiencing may very well be your hormones. But you are a wise woman, and you were already thinking that, but up until recently you had no way to advocate for yourself much less be validated. You also deserve to know why these symptoms appear, and what is happening in your body. The more we educate women, the more we will change the way our society approaches menopause and most certainly, will usher in a needed revolution in women’s healthcare. Perhaps in time, we may even celebrate it?

If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME why choose a Dr. for your menopause treatment that won’t listen. Why not choose a Dr. and clinic for your menopause treatment that celebrates your Second Spring and understands how you can celebrate it as well!

Weight Gain Caused by Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

Let us start with a few important disclaimers. We are not focusing on the number of your scale. We are finished telling women to get smaller. Get skinnier. Take up less space. We are done with all of that. Not to say obesity is not a serious problem, and a healthy body composition is not a commendable goal. But our focus has been on the wrong things and as a result we have created generations of women who have learned to connect their significance to the number of pounds they weigh.

Can her worth be measured in ounces? We don’t think so.

Instead, let’s focus on getting that woman stronger. More virile, agile, vibrant. Help her to put a thick slab of muscle on her frame. Not only is that incredibly sexy, but we now know that muscle mass is directly and positively correlated with longevity and quality of life. Now, this is a worthy pursuit. Fortunately, both BHRT and lifestyle strategies rooted in hormonal science make this very possible. So, as we continue our discussion on this topic it is important to keep this in mind. We are focusing on fat loss, with muscle gains. This may or may not translate into actual lost pounds on the scale, but that is ok. As we pursue hormone optimization, we trust your body will adjust to the “weight” best for it.

Rather than focusing on numbers on a scale, a more useful metric would be tracking your waist to hip ratio. Unlike the body mass index (BMI), which focuses on your weight to height ratio, a number that does little to determine actual health status, your waist to hip ratio focuses on amount of fat, and where you store your fat. Weight in the midsection is particularly detrimental to health as it is a strong indicator for conditions such obesity, metabolic disease, cardiac disease, and hormonal imbalances.

Steps to determine waist to hip ratio:

  1. Relax your stomach. Wrap a tape measure around the smallest portion of your belly, this is usually around your belly button. Record this number. This is your waist circumference.
  2. Then wrap the tape measure around your hips at their widest point. Record this number. This is your hip circumference.
  3. Divide your waist circumference by your hip circumference. This is your wait to hip ratio.
  4. Interpret your results according to the chart below.

Why do women tend to gain fat, particularly in the midriff, during the menopausal shift? Let’s understand. Our bodies were wonderfully and beautifully created. An essential and miraculous biological process, known as homeostasis, is always at work to keep our bodies in balance, biochemically, hormonally, physiologically, and in every way. When perimenopause starts, hormone levels start to fluctuate in women. This fluctuation is perceived by the body, and in attempt to balance things out, it has developed a compensatory mechanism. Fat. Turns out, fat is so effective at absorbing and releasing hormones, that endocrinologists now consider it an “organ” of endocrinology. The body focuses on the creation of fat, particularly in the midriff area, to soak up any extra hormone as a reservoir for periods of hormonal lack. It is actually your bodies way of keeping your hormones optimized. Wonderful, isn’t it? So here is the hard truth. If your hormones are out of balance, your body does not want to release fat. This is why you have now found your typical nutrition and exercise routines no longer release fat as effectively as they once did. It’s not you, it’s your hormones. Now you know.

In addition, as women age, muscle loss accelerates. This has a profound effect on her metabolism.

One pound of muscle will burn about 10 calories a day. One pound of fat will burn about 3 calories daily. Muscle mass increases calorie metabolism three times greater than fat mass. Loss of muscle mass significantly drives her daily need for calories down, and if she does not adjust, this will be stored as excess fat. Fortunately, when focusing on hormone optimization, we rarely focus on cutting calories. Rather we focus on increasing highly satiating nutrients, which in turns, helps to create more muscle. That’s right ladies, we want you to keep eating.

Get your hormones right, and you will finally work with your body, instead of against it, to achieve your optimal body composition goals.

If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME why not choose a menopause clinic that understands how the myriad of processes work together so you don’t waste time swimming against the current. It’s not about that fat, it’s all about the muscle!

Estrogen Dominance – Consideration for Menopause and Perimenopause Treatment

Estrogen dominance is caused by an excess of estrogen, in particular it’s ratio to progesterone levels. A balanced progesterone to estrogen ratio is 100-500 during the luteal phase. When this ratio is <100, this indicates an excess of estrogen relative to progesterone. This can mean that even if a woman has a normal amount of estrogen, if it is high relative to progesterone, that may indicate an estrogen dominant state. A woman does not need to be in perimenopause to experience estrogen dominance, but it is most observed during this stage. Women who have estrogen dominance can experience weight gain, irritability, bloating, anxiety, hot flashes, and night sweats.

In addition to the hormonal fluctuations that come with perimenopause, there are many other factors that can contribute to the estrogen dominant state.

Visceral fat, the internal fat that surrounds organs, drives up the process of aromatization. Aromatization is a natural process in which the enzyme aromatase converts androgenic hormones such as testosterone, into estrogen. Some aromatization is normal, however when an individual has a lot of visceral fat, this process is accelerated. A poor nutrition diet, one that is high in processed carbs and refined sugar, will supercharge aromatization too.  Alcohol has a direct effect on activating aromatase enzyme. Any poor lifestyle choice that increases inflammation, will increase the production of estrogen. Additionally, certain medication, and in particular birth control, can drive up estrogen to problematic levels.

Fortunately, through targeted lifestyle change, and in some cases, hormonal therapy, estrogen dominance can be corrected.

It’s not often your primary care physician explains estrogen dominance, but in ME, when it comes to choosing a Dr. and a Menopause clinic for your menopause treatment you can choose another option, choose one that understands estrogen dominance and the role it plays in what you are feeling.

Metabolic Syndrome Including Insulin Resistance During Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

As we age, due to poor lifestyle choices and inflammation, certain cell receptor sites start to lose their sensitivity. Reduced insulin sensitivity is commonly experienced by the menopausal woman. This means that the insulin receptors sites become resistant to binding insulin hormone, requiring the body to create more insulin to counteract this resistance. If this process continues unchecked, metabolic syndrome including diabetes mellitus may develop. This includes blood sugar instability, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and increased abdominal weight. Menopause can accelerate this process as estrogen is important in the insulin binding mechanisms. Less estrogen equates to poorer insulin sensitivity. In addition, the sex hormone testosterone is well established as being an important hormone to maintain metabolic health. Depleted testosterone levels are correlated with increased cardiac events, metabolic syndrome, obesity, and higher risk mortality overall.

Knowing your A1C levels can be an important tool in assessing and managing emerging insulin resistance. A1C is the glycated fraction found on the hemoglobin protein in our blood cells.

Unlike a glucose test which only measures your glucose level at a given time, the A1C lab gives us an average of your glucose blood levels over 3 months. An abnormal A1C is 5.7% or greater and indicates insulin resistance. Values >6.5% are considered diagnostic for diabetes. Functional medicine, which focuses on optimal values, defines an ideal A1C as being <5.3% and values >5.4% are considered suboptimal. Eating a diet that prioritizes stabilized blood sugar and insulin levels, and high in proteins and antioxidants, becomes increasingly paramount in the health of the menopausal woman. IHAC includes a complete hormonally optimized nutritional plan for every client.

If you are in Gardiner Maine and want quality menopause treatment that help alleviate your unwanted symptoms and help you get your life back, then understanding lab values such as A1C and its connection to menopause symptoms is critical. Most menopause doctors and their clinics think A1C is for Diabetes, but the reality is it can tell us a lot about what’s going on inside the Menopausal woman.

Mood Swings Caused by Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

Mood swings can be commonly experienced by a woman in the menopausal transition. Declining sex hormones, including estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, all contribute to overall mood instability and irritability. In particular, progesterone has been studied for its affects as a neurosteroid, which is a steroid that is made in the brain and has a positive effect on neuroplasticity, cognition, mood, neuron cell creation and repair, and reduced inflammation.

Mood swings can be made worse by a menopause-induced sleep disturbance, anxiety, distress over body composition and reduced libido.

It becomes very important for clinicians to evaluate a woman’s mental health state in relation to their hormones, especially as they enter perimenopause. Too often, antidepressants are prescribed when in fact, a woman may experience far greater relief from hormonal therapy treatment.

No matter where you are, including Gardiner ME, if you are looking for menopause treatment and your current doctor treating your menopause recommends antidepressants as a cure for your less than stellar mood, you should call IHAC so we can help you understand there may be a better way. Sure, there are real reasons why antidepressants may be necessary, but not every, and perhaps not even most, women experiencing menopause, needs them to address their health challenges including mood swings. Far too much of that going on in Gardiner Maine, and for that matter everywhere these days.

Brain Fog Caused by Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

The exact mechanism is not understood in entirety, but the menopausal transition can cause a thick brain fog to settle in the mind of a woman. In the more severe cases, this mental cloudiness can make women feel like they are developing early Alzheimer’s. This brain fog is most described as an increased difficulty in focus, concentration, and requiring more effort for memory recall. It is likely caused by fluctuating levels of hormones, and sleep disturbances common in menopause. Decreased executive function scores have been observed in menopausal women, likely due to this brain fog.

The good news is that in many cases, this condition may be temporary, and BHRT has been shown to be effective in treating brain fog caused by menopause.

If you are in ME and you suspect you are experiencing the menopausal symptoms of brain fog or decreased executive function, know BHRT has been shown to prove effective in treatment, and IHAC can provide bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to all women in New Hampshire, even those in more remote areas in need via our easy access telehealth platform.

Sleep Disturbances of Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

Sleep disturbance can be particularly challenging for a woman during her menopausal years. Poor sleep can affect every other biological function of daily living, only compounding the effects. When you sleep, the body restores and repairs, and growth hormone is released from the pituitary gland. Growth hormone is indicated in numerous metabolic functions including muscle formation, fat regulation, and blood sugar stability. Poor growth hormone secretion can have deleterious effect. This is particularly important for females as they require more sleep than males, at least 7-9 hours nightly, or more.

Modern lifestyle habits make quality sleep even more difficult to achieve.

Blue light emitted from cell phones can delay melatonin release. Staying indoors all day, with minimal exposure to sunlight, also suppresses melatonin release. Societal pressures and household responsibilities compound anxiety and mental stress, contributing to sleep disturbance. Incorporating hormone therapy and targeted lifestyle strategies can play a very important role in improving sleep in the menopausal woman.

Let’s face it if you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME, you live or spend a lot of time in Gardiner Maine and that means you are experiencing some sort of sunlight depravation and it’s influencing your hormone levels, thus complicating your menopause symptoms and potential treatment. This lack of sunshine or daylight is impacting the quality of your sleep, and we can help. You need a good night’s rest.

Vasomotor Symptoms – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

Vasomotor symptoms are caused by temperature dysfunctions due to a drop in hormones during the menopausal transition. Commonly known as hot flashes and night sweats, these are the most recognized and reported conditions of menopause. Vasomotor symptoms are well alleviated utilizing BHRT treatments.

Even though vasomotor symptoms continue to be the most recognized menopausal symptoms, we are determined to continue to educate and validate women with regards to the many other symptoms they may be unnecessarily suffering from.

Any menopause treatment center in Gardiner ME you may be considering must not only understand the common Vasomotor symptoms they all talk about, but they must also understand at a high level the many other symptoms that also impact the quality of life of the menopausal woman, at IHAC we help you with all of the challenges you may be facing.

Loss of Libido – Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

Among all the unwanted symptoms caused by menopause, the loss of libido, clinically known as Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD) may cause the greatest detriment not only to the woman, but to her partner. HSDD can include loss in desire for intimacy, decreased sensitivity to arousal, and decreased strength in orgasm. Although not HSDD by definition, this effect can also have a negative outcome on non-sexual intimacy, including a lack of desire to be hugged or even touched, or generally not feeling like herself, or in her “own skin”. Unfortunately, this can be incredibly detrimental not only to her ability to connect with her intimacy partner but can thwart her ability to connect with her family and life in general. This problem has been compounded by the common perception that female sexual health is somehow less relevant after her child-bearing years. We emphatically disagree. We believe the capacity for robust sexual health, including the ability for non-intimate connection, is a pillar of women’s health.

The hormone that is most studied and has the strongest indication for improving HSDD symptoms is testosterone therapy.

Testosterone is not just a male hormone. It is a human hormone and is very important for female health, and particularly her sexual health. Early screening of HSDD in the perimenopausal woman should be included in any comprehensive women’s health program.

If you are looking at options for menopause treatment in Gardiner ME make sure any clinic or practice you are considering understands HSDD at a high level and is willing to consider it a challenge that needs attention. Most doctors and clinicians treating menopause in New Hampshire either choose to ignore, or don’t have an understanding themselves of HSDD, at IHAC we take HSDD seriously and have had great success in helping women with menopause, alleviate the challenges of HSDD utilizing BHRT.

Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause – Consideration for Menopause Treatment

As woman age, depletion in sex hormone has deleterious effects on her body. The tissue at the base of her vagina, called vestibular tissue, is especially sensitive to hormone deficiency. Over time, she may experience loss of moisture and increased dryness, pain with or without sexual intercourse, increased irritation, atrophy, and increased urinary issues including urinary tract infections. These symptoms are known as Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause (GSM).

UTIs caused by GSM can be especially detrimental as this can expose women to large amount of antibiotics and an increased risk to develop antibiotic-resistant infections.

Replenishing hormones via localized BHRT cream is a very effective treatment for GSM. Urologist and fiery advocate for women’s sexual health, Dr. Rachel Rubin, describes menopause as “An androgen deficiency syndrome”, that is, a deficiency in both estrogen and testosterone. There are strong indications for treatment with both estrogen and testosterone creams to alleviate these symptoms. Women should be screened for this syndrome as part of their routine medical care.

What you won’t find at many menopause treatment clinics in Gardiner is a strong wealth of knowledge in the treatment of menopause with Testosterone even though there is decades of research indicating it’s efficacy in menopause symptom treatment. Let IHAC explain how Testosterone can be your secret weapon as part of your BHRT program.

Menopause and the Case for Testosterone Therapy

Menopause is defined as the cessation of menses which occurs when the ovaries have insufficient follicles to communicate and sustain the hypothalamic pituitary gonadal axis. The discussion of menopause and treatment typically occurs once a myriad of symptoms have been experienced.  This occurs in the perimenopausal/postmenopausal states where the oocytes (eggs/follicles) are depleted and no longer support the cyclical activity of gonadotropins. However, treatment in the pre-perimenopausal state with bioidentical testosterone can prevent the evolution of symptoms experienced.

This article will discuss treatment protocols for women in the pre-perimenopausal state as well as the perimenopausal and post-menopausal state. The discussion will include the different needs, necessities, and varying symptoms that are typical in these states.

When you choose to have menopause treatment in Gardiner ME make sure you choose practitioners who understand not only estrogen as it pertains to menopause, but more importantly testosterone.

The pre-perimenopausal state is defined as a female who experiences decreased muscle tone, reduction of libido, increased central adiposity, impaired concentration and memory, sleep disturbance, and fatigue but with no classic menopausal symptoms such as vasomotor symptoms (hot flashes), vaginal atrophy, emotional lability due to fluctuations in estrogen. The typical age group would be a female in ages of 40 to 50 years old. In the pre-perimenopausal state, typical lab values will show reductions in testosterone but normal levels of estradiol. There should be very little levels of estrone (E1) which is produced in the post-menopausal state. In an ideal treatment scenario, a patient that seeks alleviation of the symptoms in the pre-perimenopausal state should receive testosterone treatment without the necessity of exogenous estrogens. The treatment with testosterone, in many cases, will prevent the necessity of potent estrogens. As a woman ages, much like in men, the ovaries/testes and will decrease the production of testosterone. Once a female begins to experience the reduction of follicles, she will begin to experience symptoms of a hypo-estrogenic state. Treatment in these early stages, prior to experiencing a hypo-estrogenic state can alleviate both the testosterone deficiency but also the estrogen deficiency by a process called aromatase activity. Aromatase is a member of the cytochrome P4 50 enzyme family and is responsible for the conversion of both androstenedione to estrone (E1) and the conversion of testosterone to estradiol (E2). Aromatase activity in an excess state can be deleterious for both men and women due to the negative feedback loop present with the disruption of gonadotropin release from the hypothalamic pituitary axis. This is typically present with patients who have inflammatory states produced by obesity, insulin resistance such as type II diabetes, exposures to toxic industrial chemicals amongst others. However, a female in the perimenopausal and postmenopausal state will find relief of hypo estrogenic symptoms due to the conversion of testosterone to estradiol from exogenous testosterone replacement. It is for this reason that early treatment is paramount to prevent the unwanted symptoms of menopause from occurring. The pre-perimenopausal woman should fit the following criteria to be eligible for testosterone treatment: she should be experiencing the earlier reported symptoms of testosterone deficiency, she should have no plans for pregnancy, and she should not have pre-existing conditions which could prove deleterious with testosterone replacement such as a prior history of thromboembolism such as deep venous thrombosis or pulmonary embolus, polycythemia vera, complications caused by PCOS, or other disqualifying conditions.

Seeking menopause treatment in Gardiner Maine requires finding qualified practitioners that are physician directed so that drug and hormone interactions with symptoms either of menopause or aside of menopause that might be present, will be considered during treatment. You want more than treatment, you want effective treatment that is safe.

Perimenopause, the menopausal transition, describes the fluctuation of ovarian reserves that reflect a diminishing follicle pool.

Prior to menopause, the ovaries, specifically a growing follicle, produce anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) and inhibin B. These hormones through a negative feedback loop will suppress the release of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) from the pituitary gland. As the follicle reserves are depleted, these hormones are also depleted. The pituitary gland will recognize the reduction of these hormones that are produced by a growing follicle and attempt to increase the stimulation of follicle growth. This is the reason why follicle stimulating hormone can be seen at high levels in the late perimenopausal state. It is important to know that in the early perimenopausal state, FSH is mostly preserved and should not be used as a method to diagnose perimenopause. As the follicle reserves continued to dwindle to a critical level, the release of FSH will increase. This increase in FSH will have a profound effect on the rate at which follicles will grow; thus, creating luteal out-of-phase (LOOP) events, essentially increasing the luteal phase. These fluctuations change typical hormone secretory patterns disrupting the ovulatory cycle which contribute to menstrual irregularity. Women will then experience extended menses and missed menstrual periods during this time. Treatment with exogenous testosterone will suppress the release of follicle stimulating hormone from the pituitary gland which can alleviate menstrual irregularity by eliminating the rapid-fire stimulation of the follicles due to excess FSH. In the early perimenopausal state, it can stabilize menstrual cycles BEFORE the fluctuations occur.

In many cases, testosterone can treat and eliminate unwanted symptoms of pre-menstrual syndrome.

Make sure any Gardiner ME menopause treatment clinics you decide to visit for treatment understands that testosterone can be utilized in the early perimenopausal state to stabilize menstrual cycles before the fluctuations occur.

As perimenopause progresses, there will be decreases in estrogen production. Estradiol will somewhat normalize during these shortened ovulatory periods; however, during anovulation, there will be periods of estrogen deficiency that is marked by increased anxiety, emotional lability, vasomotor symptoms such as hot flashes, and a variety of other symptoms that signify a hypo-estrogenic state. While every woman is different, the symptoms can last for years. Treatment with exogenous testosterone can regulate these reductions in estrogen through the conversion of testosterone to estradiol via aromatase activity as earlier explained. The earlier treatment is initiated, the more effective at regulation the treatment will be. In some cases, the fluctuations and deficits of estrogen are not completely treated by exogenous testosterone. This is more prevalent amongst women starting treatment late into perimenopause. In these cases, exogenous bioidentical estrogen products may be necessary to alleviate menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. The most effective treatment of vasomotor symptoms with estrogen products would include a formulation called Bi-Est. This is a combination of prepubescent estrogen, Estriol (E3), and estradiol (E2) in topical form applied at a frequency that reflects the severity of symptoms. This formulation consists of 80% estriol (E3) and 20% Estradiol (E2). The prepubescent form of estrogen is preferred at higher concentrations over estradiol because of its less stimulating on breast and endometrial tissue while still alleviating vasomotor symptoms as well as not contributing to hypertension. It is a common practice of prescribing progesterone along with estrogen products for women who still have an intact uterus. The clinical reasoning for this is that estrogen products will increase the thickness of the endometrial lining. After the completion of the last menstrual cycle, the lining would no longer be shed. As estrogen products are utilized this lining will continue to grow which increases the risk for uterine cancer. The addition of progesterone stops the thickening process effectively reducing the risk for uterine cancer. However, in the perimenopausal state, where the patient is not progesterone deficient nor displays symptoms of progesterone deficiency while the patient is still shedding a uterine lining, the benefit may not be greater than the potential risk of breast cancer that may be associated with progesterone supplementation.

In these cases, it is critical to explain the risks of treatment to the patient fully and develop a treatment plan that is based on mutual decision-making with the presentation of facts and science.

Treatment for treatments sake isn’t a good plan, ensure both efficacy and safety by choosing a menopause treatment clinic in ME that not only understands treatment, but all of the risks and tradeoffs of decisions to be made, and is committed to transparency in treatment by explaining everything to you so you can make the best decisions possible for your treatment.

Vaginal dryness, atrophy, and decreased lubrication are also symptoms of a hypoestrogenic state. Where systemic symptoms of estrogen deficiency (i.e., vasomotor symptoms) are not seen, as in the case with exogenous testosterone treatment, an intravaginal formulation of Bi-Est can be used effectively to reverse these conditions. Intravaginal Bi-Est is less stimulating and contributes less to coagulant will states that may lead to DVTs or PEs. In all cases of clinical treatment, less is always better. The safest and most responsible route of treatment is always one that is conservative and treats out of necessity for the exact symptoms that are experienced.

If you are looking for menopause treatment in Gardiner make sure you choose a menopause clinic that is committed to the philosophy of less is more. You want the safest and most responsible treatment available to address the exact symptoms you have, nothing more, nothing less. Far too many prescribers throw the kitchen sink at menopause only to create more problems.

Testosterone products have a profound effect on a whole host of menopausal symptoms. In addition to menopause, testosterone will also treat hypoactive sexual dysfunction disorder (HDD) and contribute to the reduction of bone loss and osteoporosis in the post-menopausal state. The effect of testosterone on libido is profound. Studies show again and again its ability to improve sexual desire, facilitate stronger and more frequent orgasms, and improve sexual experience. Because women in a post-menopausal state will experience negligible levels of estradiol and testosterone, they commonly experience bone loss and anemia. Testosterone will improve lean muscle mass which allows for increased activity. It is through this increased activity that bone mass will be preserved due to the increased strain on bones causing them to produce additional cells. The effect will be cumulative. Improvement in the muscle mass will improve bone thickness which will continue to support stability and longevity in the life of a woman.

Most of important of all, when choosing menopause treatment in Gardiner, choose a clinic that understands the importance of testosterone in the treatment of perimenopause and menopause. We see it time and time again, practitioners shying away from testosterone with a focus on estrogen, and that is a big mistake. Properly managed and administered testosterone supplementation for women is key to overcoming the challenges of perimenopause and menopause so that you can lead your best life.

Are You Looking for Menopause Treatment in Gardiner Maine, Then Call IHAC Today for Your Free Consultation, or Send us a Question via on Page Form so we can Help you Understand what you are Feeling and how we can Help!

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