Hormonal activity plays an important role in the physical and mental health of every individual.
While many of us may take them for granted, hormones are responsible for many physiological and mental processes throughout our lives.
For example, they’re responsible for vital functions like the metabolism, growth rate, fertility and sex drive.
In addition to being responsible for our moods and body weight, hormones are involved in many important processes that are essential for our well being.
This is why a hormonal imbalance has a number of disastrous effects on your health that manifest as diseases and other disorders that reduce your quality of life.
Many people often confuse the symptoms of a hormonal imbalance with other common health problems that have nothing to do with hormone levels.
It’s a good idea to be aware of some of the main symptoms. Never dismiss the possibility of developing this type of problem.
Below we’ll go over 10 of the most common symptoms of a hormonal imbalance so you can get it diagnosed and treated as soon as possible.
Let’s take a look!
1. Persistent acne
Some women suffer from breakouts before their period due to hormonal changes brought on by the menstrual cycle.
However, if the acne is chronic and breakouts occur when you’re not on your period, you may be suffering from an androgen imbalance. Androgens include male hormones like testosterone.
This group of hormones stimulates excess sebum production which then gets trapped in the pores, forming small pimples and blackheads.
Also read: Acne and Blackheads: Green Tea Can Help
2. Sleep disorders
The reduced levels of progesterone just before your period cause some women to have a hard time falling asleep.
This inability to fall asleep can also occur after giving birth, but it’s often attributed to being a new mother.
Progesterone works to relax the body. When levels are reduced, you’ll feel more anxious and stressed.
3. Constant hunger
A constant desire to eat is an obstacle to any weight loss program. Chronic hunger is sometimes caused by a hormonal imbalance.
It’s been proven that sleep deprivation increases levels of a hormone called ghrelin, which stimulates hunger.
Levels of the hormone leptin, which is responsible for regulating the appetite, also decrease.
4. Mood swings and depression
A large proportion of the female population experiences changes in mood just before their menstrual cycle, during pregnancy and during menopause.
The hormonal changes produced during this time increase stress, depression and other negative emotions that we can normally manage in other situations.
5. Migraines and headaches
During certain times of the menstrual cycle, hormonal changes can cause painful headaches and migraines.
Both can be persistent, but you should see your doctor to determine their origin.
6. Vaginal dryness
Vaginal dryness is an overwhelming symptom for women with lowered estrogen levels as a result of menopause.
This symptom not only increases the risk of vaginal infections, it also severely impacts a woman’s sex life.
7. Digestive problems
Cortisol, otherwise known as the stress hormone, causes several physical reactions in the body.
In some, it increases muscle tension, causing headaches. While in others, it only causes mood swings.
But for some people, it affects the stomach by causing a host of digestive problems like inflammation, pain and constipation.
Patients with irritable bowel syndrome often suffer from abnormal serotonin levels.
8. Chronic fatigue
Exhaustion or fatigue is the result of working too much, worry or strenuous physical activity.
However, chronic fatigue can also be the result of an underactive thyroid, a condition known as hypothyroidism.
This condition causes sudden weight gain as thyroid hormones are responsible for regulating the body’s metabolism.
Visit this article: What to Eat to Naturally Fight Fatigue
9. Changes in the breasts
High estrogen levels increase pain and sensitivity in the breasts. In some cases, it can lead to the formation of tumors, fibroids and cysts.
For this reason, periodic breast exams are vital. Regularly perform a self breast exam at home to check for any lumps or irregularities.
10. Loss of libido
Hormonal imbalances are one of the leading causes of decreased sexual desire in women. This symptom generally occurs as the direct result of the lowered estrogen levels common during menopause.
If after reading these signs and symptoms you feel you may have a hormonal imbalance, schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Remember that a specialist will be able to give you a proper diagnosis and precise treatment.