I am 50 and last year I stopped taking the birth control pill April 2021. I had been taking birth control for 26 years. Since stopping the Pill, I went through significant hair loss for six months – 1 year. I am getting my period but it is all over the place understandably.
In the last three months, I have been experiencing significant stiffness and pain in my joints. I do have arthritis and osteoarthritis and was diagnosed when I was 29. I have always had issues around achy joints etc. I have experienced attacks such as being in so much pain, I am unable to walk. I have read that Estrogen is an anti-inflammatory.
I also have no sex drive.
I want to start HRT to help. Does anyone have any feedback on their experience or what worked or didn't work for them?
I do have an appointment with my family doctor in July.
I look forward to anyone with any information to help me through this.
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Hi Katherine. @karathine99 A family doctor may not be the best bet for HRT. I have a functional medicine doctor who does this and send instructions to a compounding pharmacy for bio-identical hormone. The estradiol is made from soy and I get it as a cream in a dispensing applicator and spread it on my arms. It can also be placed in a time release capsule under the skin, but I didn't want to do that. Estradiol needs to be balanced against progesterone and I am able to get that in a peanut oil capsule from a regular pharmacy. You could search for a local compounding pharmacy and call them to find doctors who use their services who may be local to you. Bioidentical hormones are exactly the same as what your body makes except that it comes from a plant source instead. That's a good question to ask the doctor. Ideally, they replace the lowest amount of hormones to stop the hot flashes or in your case pain. When you get to menopause, the HRT will be doing everything and if you have too high of levels, it can cause cycles again. There are also natural anti-inflammatories like turmeric if that is of interest to you. https://connect.uclahealth.org/2018/10/18/ask-the-doctors-can-turmeric-reduce-inflammation/
In my own experience, foods and adverse reactions to them can cause joint pain. I was able to eliminate pain by figuring out which foods were triggering it. Are there foods that increase your pain? It's also interesting to mention that my reaction to food that previously caused pain has changed over time. There may be several reasons. I do allergy shots which reduces my level of inflammation in my body, and I had dental work containing metals removed. I had to stop wearing earrings because of reactions to metals, so this doesn't surprise me. Have you thought about dietary changes as a possible means to decrease pain?