Can progesterone help my postpartum mess?

by Cottie
(Michigan)

Thank you for this website and for the opportunity to share with others. I am 40 years old. I have a wonderful life with no history of mood trouble and lots of support.

I had my first baby at 38. My early postpartum period was especially wonderful. I was surprised by the ease of it all. When my precious babe turned 14 months I experienced a horrific mind/body nose-dive that resulted in 20 lb wt loss, severe night time brain "shivers" coupled with panic, palipitatons and a devastating mood disorder marked my intrusive thoughts and marked anxiety and depression. The whole thing has always felt entirely chemical... like something dropped in and stole a vital component to my wholeness! I sought the help of doctors and even tried Lexipro which quickly prooved toxic to my system.

Fast forward six months and I am now feeling much better thanks to magnesium suppliments which stopped the night shivers and panic, and herbal thyroid support. Now that my healing crisis has quieted I am newly aware of a pattern in my mood swings which have not gone away. Three days before my period up until ovulation I experience wild fluctuations in my mood. After ovulation I have a string of 5-8 perfect days. My progesterone recently checked rock bottom when tested on day 16. I am wondering if progesterone cream could support my body back into balance. How long can I use it? Am I entering perimenopause? I am also wondering if it is typical for someone with severe mood swings to get worse in the beginning of treatment. I want to try the cream but need to be braced for the next phase of my healing. It has been so scary, and I, like all of us here, am determined to have my life back!

LOVE and Thank you.

Comments for Can progesterone help my postpartum mess?

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Aug 17, 2010
Can progesterone help my postpartum mess?
by: Wray

Hi Cottie Thanks for the kind words about the website and love to you too. It's difficult to decide what caused your nose dive. As it normally occurs post partum, which you say was wonderful. Did you by any chance stop breast feeding at 14 months? Or did your periods start then? Breast feeding prevents these as you probably know, but once breast feeding stops the ovaries start up again. Initially the ovaries make oestrogen and testosterone, it can take some time before they start ovulating again, and making progesterone. Oestrogen is an excitatory hormone, it also lengthens the QT interval which can lead to palpitations and arrhythmia. A drop in GABA levels lead to panic attacks, GABA is one of our most calming neurotransmitters. Progesterone is needed to activate the GABA receptor sites, if you're not making any or enough, panic and anxiety will ensue. Please see our page on Anxiety. Interesting about the magnesium helping, it is a calming mineral. If your progesterone is rock bottom, which it certainly appears to be judging by your symptoms, I feel it would help you. You can use it as long as you wish, research has found it beneficial for ageing, for the skin, dementia, nerve degeneration and more. I for one will never stop, and I've been using it for 14 years now. It could be you are in P-M, although a bit young, unless your mother had a relatively early menopause. This is one way to judge when you will go into it. The average age is 51, and P-M symptoms can start 5-10 years beforehand. For more info on this please see our page on Peri-menopause. But before you consider using it, please see this page on Oestrogen Dominance. It can occur and is disconcerting if it does, I've found symptoms are worse in women with high oestrogen levels, so yours might well get worse initially. It's essential for progesterone to become the dominant hormone to feel well, the ratio between the two hormones should be well over 300:1, better if it's 600:1. I generally recommend 100-200mg/day progesterone, but it's entirely dependant on symptoms. The more severe, the more is needed. Take care Wray

Oct 08, 2010
Can progesterone
by: Anonymous

Thank you for this website, I just wont to ask you... I am using progesterone and my cycle was delayed. Progesterone is the reason or am I pregnant?

Oct 10, 2010
Can progesterone
by: Wray

Hi there Glad it's of help to you. It's impossible for me to know if you are pregnant, unless you have a test done. But progesterone can upset the cycle initially, it can come either earlier or later than normal. It usually settles down in 2-3 cycles. For more info please see our page on How to use progesterone. Take care Wray

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