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What Is Hormone Replacement Therapy?

If you’re going through menopause, then you know that the symptoms can be uncomfortable and, in some cases, even life-altering. Between the mood swings, night sweats, and hot flashes, you might wonder if there is anything out there that can offer you some relief. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT), also called estrogen replacement and menopausal hormone therapy, is considered one of the most effective treatments to relieve uncomfortable symptoms. The treatment replaces the estrogen that your body stops making when you enter menopause. Once you choose to begin the therapy, you must decide how you would like the hormones administered.

Estrogen Pills

Pills are the most common form of HRT. While some treatments can have strict dosing schedules, most are simply one pill a day with or without food, and most women find this easy to keep up on. The pills can also lower your risk of osteoporosis. There are, however, side effects to this form of treatment. Numerous studies cite an increased risk of stroke, blood clots, headache, nausea, and higher than baseline cholesterol.

Estrogen Patches and Topical Treatments

The estrogen patch is form of HRT that may have fewer side effects and the added convenience of not taking a pill every day.  Creams, gels, and sprays work in a similar fashion as the patch. Instead of being filtered through your liver like the pill, you absorb the estrogen topically. That’s why these methods are considered safer for women who are at risk for blood clots and stroke. Depending on the product, you might apply it to arms, legs, or both. Just be sure not to let a family member help you put it on—you wouldn’t want them to be dosed with estrogen too!

Estrogen Vaginal Inserts

This type of treatment is normally for women who experience severe vaginal dryness, painful sex, or burning pain. There are tablets, rings, creams, all of which are inserted directly into the vaginal canal. Most women consider these treatments effective and convenient without having to worry about dangerous side effects. They have the advantage of targeting the estrogen without the need to flood the body with the hormone.

Making a Choice

Wondering if HRT is right for you? Log your symptoms in Oohvie, then schedule an appointment with DocLynk to discuss your situation in detail. Only then will your doctor be able to use all of your detailed menstrual data and healthcare information to craft an appropriate treatment plan for you.

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We want to know what you're interested in.

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