If you take bioidentical hormones to manage your menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats, don’t be surprised if taking them helps improve symptoms of some of your other health conditions. Unlike synthetic hormones, bioidentical hormones are made from natural sources such as yams, and are almost identical to the hormones that your body produces. The following three health conditions may improve or even resolve during hormone replacement therapy:

Back Pain

Back pain can be caused by osteoporosis, which is especially common in menopausal women. Osteoporosis can cause severe back pain, hip pain, thin bones and fractures, and is often related to declines in hormone levels that occur during the menopausal years.

Bioidentical hormones can help restore deficient hormone levels while staving off osteoporosis symptoms. While taking hormones cannot reverse bone loss, it can help strengthen your bones, help prevent further thinning, alleviate pain and reduce the risk for fractures.

Chronic Urinary Tract Infections

Low estrogen can decrease bladder tone, which can lead to urinary retention. When urine is retained in the bladder for extended periods of time, bacteria can multiply and cause an infection. Bioidentical hormones can help improve bladder tone so that your bladder contracts normally. This can facilitate optimal voiding so that urine is not retained in your bladder.

If you experience a burning sensation during urination, see blood in your urine, experience an increase or decrease in urinary frequency or develop pelvic or back pain, see your doctor because these are symptoms of a urinary tract infection. You may benefit from bioidentical hormones if you experience frequent urinary tract infections, which over time, may cause permanent kidney damage.

Gingivitis

Declines in circulating estrogen levels can also lead to gingivitis. Estrogen helps keep your teeth and gums healthy, and when your body stops producing normal amounts of estrogen as a result of menopause, you may experience inflamed, red or bleeding gums.

Low estrogen may also lead to gum recession and increase the risk for a gingival infection. Bioidentical hormones can help restore optimal levels of circulating estrogen so that your gums stay healthy and your teeth remain strong.

Talk to your doctor to determine if bioidentical hormones might help improve any of the above conditions. Bioidentical hormone prescriptions are based upon saliva and urine tests and are formulated in special pharmacies known as compounding pharmacies, as opposed to traditional pharmacies. These types of hormones may also help decrease the risk for heart attack and stroke in certain people.