Anxiety question

by Beverly
(Virginia, USA)

Hi Wray! I have so appreciated your site and all the help it's been to me as I'm trying to navigate this hormone issue. My issues with anxiety began about 6-7 years ago. I'm 37 and have 5 children. My last three were born in 3.5 years. The pregnancies with them were extremely stressful on my body and I suffered from severe hyperemesis. After the birth if my third child I just didn't feel 'right' and I became anxious and depressed. I chalked it up to sleep deprivation and life with a new baby. After my fourth child was born just 17 months later I hit rock bottom. After suffering for months I decided to go on Zoloft. It worked and life was good again. Then I got pregnant again. Nothing has been the same - I just keep spiraling in anxiety. Between pregnancy, nursing and the demands of life with five children everything sort of fell apart about 18 months ago. My youngest is almost 3 and I would have thought that my hormones would be back to normal but they aren't. My periods used to always be 30 days, very predictable. When this bout of anxiety hit so hard I started having 24-26 day cycles and spotting starting around 4-5 days out. I have tried several anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications but really never found relief like I did after the birth if my fourth child. I began to search out natural remedies for anxiety and I came across progesterone. Everything I read screamed THIS IS ME!! I bought some (Emerita Pro-Gest 450 mg, 20mg/1/4 tsp) and started using it January 22, day 7 of my cycle, twice a day as recommended on the packaging. I noticed an immediate difference! I was still very anxious but it was more controllable, less intense. I stopped just as suggested too on day 28. My period didn't start again until day 38. By that time I had sunken back into the nasty pit of anxiety once again. I started using it again on day 4 of my cycle out of desperation (february 26). It again helped immediately...lessening the anxiety. I also started using a 1/8-1/4 tsp in the middle of the day and that made another big difference. I've been reading about your cream and I'm going to order it. I'm very concerned that I'm going to stop again on day 28 and spiral down again into another anxious pit. Do you have any suggestions or recommendations? I would appreciate any help or thoughts! Thank you so much in advance! I believe I'm onto something with the cream but I'm just not sure that I'm using it properly and getting the most benefit from it. Any help is appreciated! Thank you!! Blessings!!!

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Mar 07, 2012
Anxiety question
by: Wray

Hi Beverly I know how you feel, as I had PND too, lasted for four years. I was 33 when I had Justine, so I was 37 by the time the anxiety etc lifted. A few short years later I was into Peri-menopause and spiralling down again! I only found progesterone when I was 47, luckily too, as if I hadn't I'm sure I would have done myself in, if not someone else! Having five children does take it out of you, and the last 3 so close too. Not enough time for you to heal from each one. Your progesterone is dropping now, as from about age 35 we begin getting anovulatory cycles, when no progesterone is secreted. These increase in frequency through peri-menopause, until Menopause when we stop producing viable eggs. This would also account for your symptoms. Hyperemesis is a sign of low progesterone, there's more info on this page here. Plus info on PND. Dr Dalton has written an excellent book on PND too. It doesn't surprise me your cycle changed or the spotting too, this is another sign of low progesterone. Unless symptoms are severe, I recommend following the cycle. This means starting progesterone at ovulation, or possibly the 50 hours before ovulation, not days before. There's more info on our page Progesterone Misconceptions. All women, irrespective of their cycle length, ovulate 12-14 days before bleeding. So a 30 day cycle would require starting it on day 16, a 24-26 day cycle on days 10-12. There's more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. But when symptoms are severe I definitely recommend using it daily, through any bleeding, for 2-3 months maybe more. This ensures progesterone becomes dominant, suppressing any excess oestrogen. Stopping the progesterone allows oestrogen to rise again, not what you want! When first using progesterone it can upset the cycle, as you found by only bleeding on day 38. It does right itself in time. I'm delighted the progesterone helped, although the amount is far lower than I suggest. This is normally 100-200mg/day, but often more is needed if severe symptoms are being experienced. It's not a lessening of anxiety you need, but to have none at all. It should be used a minimum of twice a day, using it as you did again at midday was excellent. We have women using it hourly, whenever they feel the need. Continued below.

Mar 07, 2012
Anxiety question Part 2
by: Wray

Hi Beverly I can't tell you how much you'll need, although I have found 400mg/day is best if anxiety is severe. This also ensures progesterone becomes quickly dominant. This is half the amount Dr Dalton gave her patients. The idea would be to divide the amount into however many times you think you'll need it, no harm in using more if you find you've run out of the daily amount. But try not to go less than the optimal, as symptoms come back. You might find you don't need 400mg/day, only you can tell that by using it. PND is often accompanied by high copper, low zinc. Unless you have a blood test or hair analysis you won't know, but there's no harm in taking the zinc. The standard daily dose is 15mg, I suggest you try 50mg/day for about a month, then reduce to 15mg/day. We also have a page on Anxiety. It gives a list of natural antidepressants which you could consider. But above all please have a vitamin D test done. A lack causes depression, plus it reduces the benefits of progesterone, amongst many things. Many find that persisting symptoms, even on very high amounts of progesterone go, once they start the vitamin D. This page here is very lighthearted, but you'll notice the high amounts, plus the benefit of the vitamin D. But please have a test before starting it, it's important to know your level, as you could need high amounts to get it up if low. For more info on vitamin D levels, testing etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml or 175-250nmol/L and not the 30ng/ml or 75nmol/L most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Thanks for the kind words and blessings to you too! Take care Wray

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