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Once your doctor has taken the appropriate blood, urine and/or saliva tests and taken your case carefully, you may be prescribed hormones in the form of a cream, patches, liquid, gel caps, or even suppository.

My strong advice is already used other natural treatments, and still believe hormones are needed ask the doctor for the lowest doses of the hormones possible and then retest your levels in one to two months while monitoring how you feel. While natural hormones are 'natural', there are no adequate tests to know whether they are truly a safer option. We known conventional hormones raise risk of certain cancers, so we will have to assume that natural hormones may also.

If you start taking the hormones, and your mood does not improve, then you can slowly increase one or more of the hormones as indicated by your symptoms, while monitoring with blood tests. Use the list below as a general guide to help decide to adjust the hormones:

Low estrogen symptoms and signs: depression, panic attacks, night sweats, bone loss, vaginal dryness, dry skin

Low progesterone symptoms: migraine attacks, symptoms that resemble PMS, unexplained anxiety, fatigue, poor sleep patterns, vaginal dryness, low libido, accelerate wrinkling of skin, water retention. Also, symptoms of estrogen dominance (see 'excess estrogen symptoms below) can be caused by low progesterone.

Low testosterone symptoms: low mood and depression, weight gain, bone loss, low libido

Low DHEA symptoms: low mood and depression, bone loss, low libido, auto-immune disease processes

Excess estrogen symptoms: tender breasts, bloating, weight gain, mood swings, night sweats, restless sleep, irritability, uterine fibroids, low thyroid symptoms, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)

Excess progesterone symptoms: muscle weakness, vaginal dryness, high temperature, mood swings, anxiety and depression, greasy skin, headaches,

Excess testosterone symptoms: excess hair growth both on face and midline of abdomen, deepening of the voice, body shape changes, acne and skin problems, mood swings.

Excess DHEA symptoms: acne, increased facial hair and decreased hair on the top of the head, increased perspiration, increased sweating, nausea and abdominal discomfort

Please remember the above is merely a guide and you need to work with a qualified physician to monitor properly for you.

As I mentioned in my book, no one fully understands the in's and outs of hormones in a woman's body. I am never surprised anymore when I see the exact opposite of what I expect when it comes to hormones.

The key is to keep up the naturopathic suggestions outlined in the other parts of How Come They're Happy and I'm Not? and work closely with your doctor, starting slowly using the lowest doses possible. Have your doctor test your levels regularly, and, most importantly, monitor how you feel.