Something's not right. You just don't feel at home in your body anymore. You're sleeping less and eating more and feeling tired, bloated and cranky has become your default mode. Does this sound familiar?
Don't fret - most people have similar complaints. The signs and symptoms may vary, but there's a common denominator here… out-of-whack hormones!
Fortunately, by familiarising yourself with the warning signs that your hormones are wreaking havoc on your health, you can spot it easily and tweak your lifestyle to stabilise your levels. Read on for five red flags that might merit a doctor's note…
Four signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance
#1: You’re always exhausted
While it’s totally normal to feel tired after a late night or a long work week, it’s abnormal to constantly feel exhausted and fatigued – especially if weight gain, change in bowel movements and serious appetite fluctuations are accompanying symptoms. If you’re chronically fatigued, you may have an underactive thyroid. Don’t panic – thyroid problems are common, but you can’t leave them untreated.
#2: Your skin is breaking out
Is your skin breaking out in spots because you haven’t been washing your face before bed most nights, or because your hormones have gone haywire? If you’re breaking out in cystic acne around the lower half of your face, it may be a sign that your testosterone levels are too high. Thankfully, a simple prescription medication will be able to help stabilise your hormones and clear up your skin.
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#3: Your hair is growing super-fast
Of course it’s normal for your hair to grow, but super-fast hair growth? That’s not so normal. If you notice coarse, dark hair popping up on your arms, chest or back or have suddenly grown a beard within a month, it may be the sign of a testosterone-secreting tumour
. Tumours are rare, but if you do happen to have one, medication or surgery is all it will take to treat it.
#4: You often wake up sweating during the night
Do you often wake up sweating or feeling overheated in the middle of the night? Unless your bedroom’s just very hot, it could be because of infrequent ovulation of the result of lower oestrogen levels, also known as perimenopause, which precedes full-blown menopause. Believe it or not, some women experience perimenopause as much as 10 years before they’re even near the age of menopause! So unless you’re experiencing serious menstrual issues before age 40, it’s likely early menopause.
If you’re experiencing one or more of the above signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance, make sure you don’t ignore them!