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Progesterone Deficiency: Symptoms of Low Progesterone

Progesterone Deficiency: Symptoms of Low Progesterone
Progesterone is a hormone, which is responsible for the regular menstrual cycle and also for protecting the pregnancy. Though, very often it has been observed that most women have symptoms of progesterone deficiency at some point of in their life, the reasons vary from woman to woman.
Low progesterone or progesterone deficiency can cause many complications. The hormone progesterone plays a huge rule in maintaining pregnancy. Let us understand what is progesterone, before we learn about the symptoms of low progesterone.

What is Progesterone?

Progesterone is a hormone, produced in the ovaries. It is responsible for the changes, which take place in the uterus during the later half of the menstrual cycle. It is progesterone which prepares the uterus for the implantation of the fertilized egg, and also is responsible for maintenance of the uterus through pregnancy.

Symptoms of Low Progesterone

Progesterone deficiency is seen not only in older women, i.e. women who are approaching menopause, but also in younger women. In younger women, it is seen as Premenstrual Syndrome, the acronym being PMS. The most common symptoms of low progesterone are...
Depression: Low progesterone can cause depression and can lead to suicidal tendencies.
Insomnia: Low levels of progesterone can cause insomnia.
Premenstrual Syndrome: If you often experience symptoms like mood swings, anxiety, etc, which you have not experienced previously, it could be one of the symptoms of low progesterone.
Fatigue: If you have not made significant changes to your lifestyle and there are no reasons that can cause fatigue, you must check if progesterone deficiency, is the cause.
Memory Loss: It has been observed that low levels of progesterone can lead to memory loss.
Irregular Menstrual Cycle: Some women experience a heavy flow in one month, and the next month they might not menstruate at all. Progesterone deficiency can also cause frequent menstruation. They menstruate approximately every 20 days instead of the regular 28 days.
Heavy Menstruation: Women with progesterone deficiency experience heavy bleeding to the extent, that they have to change sanitary napkins, at times even after every hour. They may also experience heavy clotted bleeding.
Weight Gain around the Abdomen: If you notice abnormal weight gain around the abdominal area it can be due to progesterone deficiency.
Vaginal Dryness: Very often women in the peri-menopausal or menopausal phase, experience vaginal dryness, due to the deficiency of progesterone. Vaginal dryness also causes painful intercourse.
Other Symptoms: Some of the other symptoms of low progesterone are joint pain, urinary tract infection, cyst in the intestine, change in appetite, reduced libido, fibroids etc.
Causes of Progesterone Deficiency

Few of the causes of progesterone deficiency are enumerated below.
Stress: Studies have shown that many women in America suffer from progesterone deficiency, due to the fast paced and stressful life they lead. Stress is also responsible for irregular ovulation.
Diet: Women consuming high amounts of non-vegetarian food usually have high levels of estrogen. Animals these days are given high levels of estrogen, so that they grow big in size. This estrogen finds its way in the human body and causes imbalance between the levels of progesterone and estrogen in the human body.
Birth Control Pills: There are high levels of of prescription hormones in birth control pills. One of the hormones, is Progestin, but it is not the same as the progesterone hormone produced by the body. Added to it, these birth control pills increase the levels of estrogen, causing an imbalance.
Other Reasons: Some of the other reasons causing progesterone deficiency are hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, adrenal gland disorders, hormone replacement therapy, etc.
Very often it is seen that there are symptoms of low progesterone. However the causes of progesterone deficiency are never researched or they are simply neglected. Some women use over the counter progesterone creams, which give them relief without going into the details of progesterone deficiency. It is however not advisable to use over the counter medicines, they can do more harm than sometimes.