5 Situations Where Hormone Testing Might Be Needed

There are a few situations in which hormone testing might be appropriate, but they are typically those where women are used to having to “deal with” unpleasant symptoms. This is either because they feel they are not being taken seriously by their healthcare provider or they think that their experience is just how things are sometimes and hopefully the issue will pass. One of the methods doctors are using more often to determine whether an underlying health concern is present for a range of female health issues is hormone testing. Hormone testing can often provide a real answer to an issue that has disrupted a patient’s quality of life, sometimes for years.

Ask your doctor about hormone testing if you…

1. Have had a change in sex drive

Libido issues in women are very common, and they can occur for a few different reasons. Hormone changes are one of the top sources of lowered libido, but women so often look to things like stress, fatigue, diet, and birth control instead. This isn’t to say that those are contributing factors (they definitely can be), but your hormone levels should really be considered when you consult with your doctor.

2. Are unable to conceive

If you are under the age of 35, doctors normally advise waiting a year before discussing possible fertility issues; they advise waiting six months if you are age 35 or older. One of the first tests that are performed is a hormone assessment because the state of our hormones can impact the success of our ovulation cycle each month as well as other factors that make pregnancy possible. However, if you suspect that you may have a hormone issue before the fix months to a year has passed, then it is appropriate to bring this up during an appointment with your doctor as a concern in order to not delay care any longer than necessary.

3. Experience increased fatigue

Being tired seems to be a part of life, and maybe it is when your schedule is hectic day after day, but perhaps you are more tired than you actually should be. Muscling through significant fatigue does not have to be part of your daily experience, especially if hormone issues are in play. If you’ve noticed an increase in your fatigue levels without any changes to your lifestyle that seem clearly connected, it may be time to ask your doctor about a hormone assessment.

4. Your period is changing

If you notice that your period is changing, for example, it is longer or shorter, heavier or lighter, you now have spotting month to month, your pain has increased, or other symptoms have increased to the point where you are missing school/work and have quality-of-life concerns, then in speaking to your doctor about this you would be fair to mention the possibility of hormone concerns. Periods should not be a debilitating experience to anyone, so if an underlying issue is present, treatment can be provided.

5. Think something just feels “off”

We know our own bodies better than anyone, which is why it is so important that we protect and advocate for them as best as we can. If you think that something isn’t right, that you’ve experienced some degree of change or concern for a period of time without things improving, then your doctor should be made aware. Hormone testing along with general blood work is a common first step that helps to determine if a condition is present and if treatment or further testing is needed.

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