Progesterone and this website have saved me!
by Kim S.
I cannot thank you enough for what you have done for me! This website has saved my life. I wish I could have met Wray, even just in email, to tell her how much I appreciate what she has done for me. I very much appreciate you too Joy!
I am 51 and a half and probably should have been using progesterone for years but came to it out of desperation just 4 short months ago.
I was dealing with a bit of stress in my 40s but coped with it through exercise and good nutrition. When I started to sleep lighter and my husband's snoring started to disturb my sleep I solved that problem by moving into the guest bedroom to sleep. I was often tired at the end of the day but thought that was normal.
At 49 (in July 2016) I lost my mom suddenly (we were very, very close) and the grief process was super intense for me. I came through the grief but found myself utterly exhausted. I had my first bout of what I call darkness (darkness I did not even feel during the grief process) in November of 2017. I went to my gynecologist because I suspected hormones! After all I was 50 so it could be the "change". She tested my hormones and said I was "normal". I then had a horrible panic attack in February 2018 and another in March. Out of desperation I went to a friend's expensive integrative medicine doctor that insurance would not pay for. She ran me through a number of tests and determined my cortisol levels were through the roof and put me on what I later learned is a typical protocol for adrenal fatigue though she never mentioned that phrase to me. So I started on relora, B vitamins, Magnesium, vitamin C etc. and felt pretty good until July when I had another episode of darkness and anxiety. Unable to get back to that doctor (who was on vacation) I went to a primary care physician who ran a bunch of test (including a mammogram) only to tell me she could find nothing wrong.
I also went to a Psychiatrist thinking I was losing my mind. He said because the depression and anxiety comes and goes that I am not clinically depressed and he could do nothing for me. So I decided to figure this out for myself.
When I had the first panic attack in February my gynecologists office prescribed me an antihistamine for the panic attack. I did not take it until the July panic attack and I noticed that it helped me a little bit. So I searched the internet for "allergies and anxiety". Long story short that led me to an article on histamine intolerance which led me to an article on adrenal fatigue which led me to purchase a book on adrenal fatigue which sounded a lot like my condition. In that book he mentioned use of progesterone to help heal extreme adrenal fatigue. I was too scared to try messing with my hormones but that thought registered. Then at the end of August I was describing what I was going through to a friend who said "Kim, it sounds like you have all the symptoms I had when I went through peri-menopause." I went to my primary care physician and asked about HRT and she said that it would only be a last resort and to try Estroven! I then searched out natural ways to cope with menopause and found Dr. Lee's book. In his book he says women who are in adrenal fatigue as they go into peri-menopause and menopause are in big trouble because when the ovaries stop making progesterone the adrenals are supposed to take over that role and can't because they are not functioning. A light bulb went on and I went right out to buy Progest. That was at the end of September. I tried the 20mg per day dose and got some initial relief so I knew I was onto something. But then of course I had the adverse reaction of the low dose and THANK GOD I found this website! I bought Natpro and went to 100mg per day and did great but on that dose I find that any infraction in my eating that introduces any extra estrogenic foods makes me weepy so I have gone up to 200mg per day (on very stressful days at work I'll go to 250mg).
I feel so good now! I am so grateful for this website and the many, many resources sited here. Having all these resources to read makes me feel confident I am doing the right thing (that and I how good I feel).
I do have a couple questions though. I am committed to using progesterone from here on out (though I hope someday to get down to 100mg per day). My first question is, since I am still having a period will using 200mg of progesterone daily throughout peri-menopause alter the natural progression of menopause in anyway? I am still getting my period once a month but with continued 200mg daily progesterone will my body stop sensing a drop in progesterone and will that prematurely stop triggering a period?
My second question is how will I know it is time to try reducing my dose down to 100mg? Will I start having some adverse symptoms from the 200mg dose and that will tell me when to decrease or do I just try say in 6 months or so?
Forever grateful to you,