Estrogen Dominance

Post image for The Importance of Estrogen for Sleep in Perimenopause & Menopause

I started using the Vivelle Dot Patch, a transdermal, bioidentical estradiol, about two years ago.  You can read a couple of posts I did on it when I first started using it here  and here. 

I started using it because I had been diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  was experiencing debilitating joint and muscle pain, was lost in massive brain fog, and couldn’t remember my middle name most of the time due to short-term memory issues.  I knew from my research that estrogen could address these issues.

So I took the plunge.

On my last visit to my gynecologist (whom I love by the way), she told me that I had a cervical polyp, which she commenced to snipping off right then and there and shipped it off to the lab for biopsy.  She assured me that it was most likely benign as most all of them were, but she had to follow protocol to make sure.

I trusted her judgement and wasn’t too whipped up over it, but still did a little Google research when I got home and learned that polyps can grow with estrogen.  Since I had been using the patch for close to two years by then, I thought it might behoove me to back off the dosage.  So, I decided that I would not change the patch out as frequently and only use it essentially when I noticed symptoms – for me that would be brain fog, short-term memory issues, and even vaginal dryness.

I actually wrote about it all here if you would like to read that post as well.

It’s been several months since I made that decision, and approximately a month ago or so I began to experience issues with my sleep.  Since I take 200 mgs of Prometrium at night, along with 3 mgs of melatonin, provided I keep a regular sleep schedule, I haven’t really had issues with sleep.  However, I began to have problems with waking up at 2:00 a.m. almost on the dot, and couldn’t go back to sleep.

At first I thought it was a problem I was having with the Happy Calm Focused supplement I had been taking.  So, I backed off of that.  But the problem persisted.  I couldn’t figure out what was going on and concluded that since my jerk-off ex-husband was still harassing me on a regular basis, that perhaps I was reacting to stress.

However, a couple of weeks ago a light bulb came on over my head.  I realized that my inability to stay asleep might be connected to the fact that I was not using the Vivelle Dot Patch as often and that my estrogen levels might be too low to promote healthy sleep cycles.

That day, I popped another patch onto my hip and viola’ sleep returned.  I have changed it out more frequently than I had been (just slightly longer than the actual dosage recommendations) and I haven’t had any problems with falling asleep and staying asleep since.

There is a lot to be said for the importance of estrogen in promoting good sleep.  Of course, it must be balanced with progesterone, and good eating habits and moderate exercise are important as well.  But, as I get older – just turned 58 – and further into my post-menopause years, estrogen levels are going to continue to drop.  Therefore, I’m going to have to address it one way or the other.

For now, I’m back on the Vivelle Dot Patch and sleep is coming.  I might decide to go a different route, or maybe I won’t.  But, the point is, estrogen was a key issue in why I couldn’t sleep.  I’m convinced of that.

I will be writing some more posts on the connection between estrogen and sleep.

{ 9 comments }

Food as Medicine: Magnesium for Anxiety & Panic Attacks in Perimenopause

Thumbnail image for Food as Medicine: Magnesium for Anxiety & Panic Attacks in Perimenopause

In researching Vitamin D and magnesium benefits for my first post in the “Food as Medicine series, I was very intrigued by a statement I had read about magnesium at GreenMedInfo.com: “Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiency.  Magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body……..A […]

March 13, 2015 CONTINUE READING →

Estrogen, Uterine Polyps & Me

Thumbnail image for Estrogen, Uterine Polyps & Me

UPDATE: A reader left a comment pointing out that this article wasn’t entirely accurate.  She herself had undergone a procedure to have uterine polyps removed and informed me that hers were so deeply embedded in her uterus, that there was no possible way for a routine gynecological exam to discover them. She also noted there […]

January 30, 2015 CONTINUE READING →

Hormone Imbalance? Oh, Honey, You’re Just Crazy!

Thumbnail image for Hormone Imbalance? Oh, Honey, You’re Just Crazy!

I ran across an article last year at the online publication The UK Daily Mail entitled, “Women with extreme PMS will now be deemed ‘mentally ill’ following controversial revision of health manual.” The health manual cited in the article is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, used by the American Psychiatric Association. The “extreme PMS” […]

January 7, 2015 CONTINUE READING →

Prometrium: An Oral FDA Approved Bioidentical Progesterone

Thumbnail image for Prometrium: An Oral FDA Approved Bioidentical Progesterone

It is no secret that I personally prefer bioidentical hormones for the treatment of symptoms of perimenopause as opposed to synthetic hormones and drugs. In fact, I sincerely believe that most women prefer natural, healthier, and less intrusive treatments as well. However, most bioidentical hormones are not FDA approved, and therefore, are not covered by most health insurance plans. Unfortunately, this […]

October 22, 2014 CONTINUE READING →

Hot Flashes & Stress in Perimenopause? Breathe Deep with Zenytime!

Thumbnail image for Hot Flashes & Stress in Perimenopause?  Breathe Deep with Zenytime!

If you’re looking for alternatives to hormone therapy to treat your symptoms of perimenopause, today’s sponsored post will be of great interest to you!   Read on to learn about an exciting new App for your phone which will help you manage hot flashes and stress during perimenopause!   “If you practice deep breathing exercises […]

October 13, 2014 CONTINUE READING →

35 Symptoms of Perimenopause: Heavy, Flooding Periods

Thumbnail image for 35 Symptoms of Perimenopause: Heavy, Flooding Periods

When the average woman thinks of perimenopause symptoms she usually thinks of the proverbial night sweats and hot flashes. Perhaps even a few mood swings thrown in for good measure. What many do not know, however, and are often surprised to find out, is that heavy, flooding periods with painful cramping and large blood clots are a common complaint for many women […]

September 1, 2014 CONTINUE READING →

Menopause is a Fact of Life, Treatment Options are a Choice

Thumbnail image for Menopause is a Fact of Life, Treatment Options are a Choice

It doesn’t matter where a woman lives. It doesn’t matter what language she speaks or how she spends her day. Menopause is a fact of her life. Every day, in the U.S. alone 6,000 women begin this mid-life adventure with hot flashes, a sudden mood swings, painful vaginal dryness, night sweats, and restless sleeping patterns. […]

April 7, 2014 CONTINUE READING →

Endometrial Hyperplasia: An Over-Diagnosed Condition in Perimenopausal Women

Thumbnail image for Endometrial Hyperplasia: An Over-Diagnosed Condition in Perimenopausal Women

Today’s post is a guest post by Dr. Roger Reichert, a leading expert in endometrial hyperplasia.  Endometrial hyperplasia is a medical term for the abnormal thickening of the lining of the uterus which causes heavy, irregular bleeding. This condition is commonly diagnosed in perimenopausal women, and has certainly been a popular topic here at The […]

August 9, 2013 CONTINUE READING →

Why do I feel like I’m Going Crazy in Perimenopause?

Thumbnail image for Why do I feel like I’m Going Crazy in Perimenopause?

It is the most common thing I hear from women regarding perimenopause. “I feel like I’m going crazy! What is wrong with me?” And there are a variety of reasons why women might feel this way too. Personally, I think the primary reason is the simple “craziness” of perimenopause in general. The wacky mood swings, […]

July 1, 2013 CONTINUE READING →

Mayo Clinic Study on Low Estrogen Causing Weight Gain Unclear?

Thumbnail image for Mayo Clinic Study on Low Estrogen Causing Weight Gain Unclear?

That’s certainly my opinion.  The Internet is abuzz with news about a recently released study co-authored by a physician at The Mayo Clinic, which says that low estrogen is the cause of weight gain in menopausal women. The actual study is entitled, “Adipocyte Fatty Acid Storage Factors Enhance Subcutaneous Fat Storage in Postmenopausal Women” and […]

May 17, 2013 CONTINUE READING →

New Study Says Menopause Weight Gain is Due to Low Estrogen?

Thumbnail image for New Study Says Menopause Weight Gain is Due to Low Estrogen?

You may have heard of a new study co-authored and released recently by the Mayo Clinic, which says that women in their post-menopause years have trouble losing weight due to “low estrogen” which causes our body to “hang onto fat” in order to “hang onto estrogen.” The study specifically says that: “Scientists have long known […]

May 8, 2013 CONTINUE READING →

35 Symptoms of Perimenopause: Anxiety and Estrogen Dominance

Thumbnail image for 35 Symptoms of Perimenopause: Anxiety and Estrogen Dominance

In Part I of this post, Dr. Jennifer Landa, Chief Medical Officer with Body LogicMD, discussed the role of fluctuating levels of progesterone in women who suffer with anxiety and panic attacks during perimenopause. Today, Dr. Landa continues the discussion and includes the role of estrogen dominance. I always say that perimenopause is a full […]

December 7, 2012 CONTINUE READING →

Guest Blogger: Women’s Health News

Thumbnail image for Guest Blogger: Women’s Health News

Who doesn’t need and want information when they hit menopause? I don’t know about you, but the intensity of the changes I went through sent me scampering to the nearest doctor, bookstore and internet for all the information and help I could get. Information during this time is crucial to survival.  At the very least, […]

March 22, 2008 CONTINUE READING →

Perimenopause: Yes, it’s Real and No, You’re Not Going Crazy!

Thumbnail image for Perimenopause: Yes, it’s Real and No, You’re Not Going Crazy!

Feel better?  I could have used someone telling me that about 10 years ago when I walked right into one of the fiercest hormonal battles of my life. First of all, I had never heard of peri-anything.  Menopause?  Yeah.  I had heard of that.  My mom called it “the change,” and I knew that sooner […]

March 22, 2008 CONTINUE READING →