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      Estrogen Imbalances Impacting on Addiction

      The Effect of Estrogen Imbalances in the Disease of Addiction

      Hormonal fluctuations affect women more adversely than men. The hormone estrogen plays crucial functions in the life of a woman and its supply should not be interrupted. However as a woman is aging the ovaries stop producing this hormone leading to a fall in the level of this hormone. When the level of the estrogen hormone has floored the duties of this hormone will be unattended to leading to myriads of health problems affecting women. Among other problems a woman will experience the following problems when the level of estrogen falls; vaginal dryness, irritability, low sex drive, mood swings, hot flashes and urgency of urination. Pellet implants have been used to treat migraine and menstrual headaches and have been found effective in dealing with menopause symptoms.

      According to an article published in the Holy Hormones journal, Female hormones are potent modulators of brain chemicals, neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.  the article reports that when a woman receives the bio-identical hormonal replacement therapy it does not only help with its anti-aging effects but also improves the general quality of life in women as it helps in preventing depression, anxiety and insomnia disorders all of which cause subsequent addiction.

      Hormonal imbalances cause drug craving

      An investigation done at  Florida Detox & Wellness Institute on all hormonal and brain chemical imbalance that can cause drug and alcohol craving it was proved that  many female patients develop addiction issues because of midlife changes in estrogen and progesterone production.  The Institute opines that the reason why these findings have gone undetected is because most addiction treatment centers do not routinely examine the hormones involved in the pituitary-adrenal-ovarian axis.

      The involvement of estrogen hormone imbalances in addiction calls for a more integrated treatment to addiction. As opposed to treating only the visible symptoms of addiction, there is need for doctors to integrate spiritual counseling and modern brain science so that the imbalances in the brain chemicals can be corrected making the treatment whole. By evaluating the possible imbalance in the brain and correcting the imbalances by bio-identical hormone therapy, the electrical activity in the brain is balanced and this nullifies the chances of a patient attempting self-medication with drugs of pleasure and alcohol. Clinical studies done at Florida Detox & Wellness Institute have indicated that addicted patients will use drugs and alcohol either to stimulate under-active brain regions or to relax over-active brain systems. The unusual electrical activity in the addicted patient’s brain is typically caused by inherited or acquired biochemical and hormonal deficiencies.

      The changes on estrogen levels in midlife causes hormonal imbalance in women and therefore for there to be a successful treatment of an addict there has to be an accurate diagnosis which is based on evaluation of neurotransmitter and hormonal and brain scan research.  By normalizing the underlying biochemical and electrical imbalance drug and alcohol craving can be stopped. There is also need to identify the specific brain chemical and hormonal deficiencies as this will allow for more effective diagnosis of the root cause of the patient’s craving, thus eliminating alcohol and drug addictions.

      Addictions that are common in the middle age population can be eliminated by correcting hormonal imbalances.  As women approach menopause the decline in estrogen takes charge however the decline in progesterone hormone normally begins eight years earlier before estrogen begins to decline. It is important to note that the decline in hormones is a gradual process. The drop in levels of progesterone hormone in women will result in such experiences as anxiety and insomnia. Other clinical studies that were done at the Florida Detox & Wellness Institute have shown that the progesterone decline phenomenon is a common etiology of alcohol and drug abuse, which causes over 40 percent of our addicted middle age females.

      The biochemical explanation for the increased anxiety experienced by midlife females is that suboptimal progesterone levels occurring in the presence of normal estradiol levels cause an increase in brain electrical activity. Progesterone essentially is a brain relaxing hormone because it converts to another hormone, allopregnanolone. This metabolite of progesterone, allopregnanolone, activates the same relaxing nerve receptor, the GABA-A receptor as does Valium, Xanax and alcohol.

      GABA activity and the estradiol production in the body. When there is a loss in GABA activity as a result of dropping progesterone levels a person will develop excess electrical activity in both, their central and peripheral nervous system. This phenomenon occurs because estradiol enhances the excitatory brain chemicals, dopamine and histamine. Their excitatory effect on brain electricity should be counter balanced with the GABA effect of progesterone. The new onset progesterone deficient middle aged female experiences newfound anxiety and insomnia that frequently precipitates the need for relaxing medication which ultimately causes subsequent addiction issues.

      Women who have low levels of progesterone hormone will begin using alcohol and other drugs to relax their brain. When this happens, alcohol, just like Valium will activates the GABA-A receptor. This will make them drink more of alcohol increasing the units they take as time goes by as the wine will cease to be just a drink to her but a medication.

      The effect of estrogen progesterone imbalance as well as other brain chemicals in causing addiction has been proved beyond any reasonable doubt and it is therefore very important for every addiction patient to ask for hormonal evaluation and restoration when receiving any addiction treatment.

      Finally, if you are battling with addiction and is interested in the long lasting, effective addiction treatment therapy please call (423) 430-6170 or contact Dr. Dalal Akoury is an experienced doctor who will be able to help you.

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