Many women don't know that progesterone deficiency symptoms can present at any age. Progesterone, a female hormone, is famous for being the “pregnancy hormone”. However, this hormone is present in the body throughout a woman's entire life, having special relevance in their reproductive life.
How Does Progesterone Affect a Woman's Life?
As the hormone largely involved in pregnancy, progesterone, along with estrogen, plays an important role during the reproductive cycle. During the menstrual period, progesterone appears in increased levels during ovulation, in order to help the fertilized egg grow and stay in the uterus. When fertilization doesn't happen, progesterone levels decrease and a new menstrual cycle begins. However, if an egg is fertilized, progesterone levels increase dramatically to help the body maintain the pregnancy. This is a time of many changes, and hormone levels tend to be unpredictable.
Besides pregnancy, there are other two phases in every woman's life that can cause progesterone deficiency. Puberty and menopause are both taxing times for the body, because of all the changes it's going through. Especially during menopause, progesterone levels can be seriously affected. Two variations of progesterone levels must be considered:
- Progesterone dominance. In this case, progesterone levels are higher than estrogen levels.
- Progesterone deficiency. This condition indicates that progesterone levels are considerably lower than estrogen levels. Continue reading to learn more about potential progesterone deficiency symptoms.
What Are Some Progesterone Deficiency Symptoms?
Closely related to menstrual cycle and reproductive life, progesterone deficiency symptoms can affect women of all ages. However, menopausal women are more likely to be affected by a sudden decrease of progesterone. Some of the most common progesterone deficiency symptoms are:
- Anovulation. Since progesterone is responsible for the second part of the menstrual cycle, if ovulation doesn't occur, progesterone levels will not rise.
- Miscarriage. Progesterone helps the uterus and the fertilized egg adjust to the new phase. When progesterone levels are low, pregnancies are not likely to succeed.
- Carbohydrate cravings. When there's an estrogen deficiency, blood sugar will be affected, causing carbohydrate craving to regulate this.
- Irregular periods, menstrual cramps, and bloating. These are related to PMS (premenstrual syndrome) and low progesterone levels in the menstrual cycle.
- Ovarian cysts. Low production of estrogen may lead to irregular periods. When periods last longer than usual, tissue renewal is delayed, which may lead to ovarian cysts.
The most common progesterone deficiency symptoms were described above, but there are others, such as water retention, headaches, mood swings, weight gain, breast tenderness, and decreased body temperature.
Although reading about the unpleasant symptoms of progesterone deficiency is a good way to start, relief for these upsetting conditions will only be found by learning more about ways to treat hormone imbalance. Click on the following link to know more about progesterone deficiency treatments, and consult with your doctor before embarking on your own personal course of treatment.