Posts tagged ‘hormones’

Today I address briefly many of the problems particular to women, since as practitioners, we find that though we’re into the 21st century, women are often silent sufferers. Even though the practice of medicine has advanced tremendously since former times, very few people are aware that our body symptoms have meaning beyond the immediate health problem they are warning us about. We can benefit emotionally, physically and spiritually if we pay attention to our body’s messages.

Emotional factors are usually involved in common gynaecological problems along with diet, heredity and other causes. Women’s problems are often related to the context of their lives. By understanding that these illnesses are often wake-up calls, the first step to healing can begin. Our illnesses often exist to get our attention and get us back on track. With a new outlook about ourselves, women can begin to heal mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically.

The health of the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes depends on a woman’s feeling able, competent and powerful to create financial and emotional abundance and stability, and to express her creativity fully. Feeling good about herself and about her relationships with other people in her life, lead to good internal pelvic health. Stressful and limiting relationships can adversely affect the health of these organs. The health of the uterus is at risk if a woman doesn’t believe in herself or is overly self-critical. In comparison, ovarian health is affected by the quality of a woman’s relationships with people and things outside herself. Ovaries are at risk when women feel controlled or criticized by others or when they themselves control or criticize others.

Chronic pelvic pain sufferers often have complex psychological and emotional histories. The physical pain is often related to unfinished emotional pain in either past or current relationships with partners or with jobs, or emotional or sexual abuse. Emotional stress in a woman’s personal or professional life that she perceives to be unresolvable is a big cause of pelvic pain.

Endometriosis is an increasingly common condition today. The tissue that forms the lining of the uterus which normally grows inside the uterus, grows in other areas of the pelvis and sometimes even outside the pelvis. Endometriosis develops when a woman’s innermost emotional needs are in direct conflict with what the world demands of her.

Fibroids often develop when there are conflicts about creativity, reproduction and relationships. If the underlying energy patterns, life questions, conflicts, and emotional issues are addressed, and changed, the fibroids usually do not grow or cause problems. Whilst we talk about mind-body issues, it is also essential to draw attention to the fact that since the uterus is sensitive to the hormone oestrogen, anything that changes circulating oestrogen levels can affect it. A diet high in partially hydrogenated and saturated fats, high in refined carbohydrates and low in fiber can increase circulating oestrogens. This puts a woman at risk for fibroids as well as endometriosis and breast cancer. Hence it is better to change to a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grain products. Reduce refined sugar, flour products and dairy foods.

As mentioned earlier, ovarian problems result from a woman’s perception that people and circumstances outside herself are preventing her from being creative. Mental patterns of vengeance and resentment also affect the ovaries. Benign ovarian growths differ from cancer only in the degree of the emotional energy involved. Extreme need for male approval while giving her own emotional needs least priority can result in ovarian cancers over a prolonged period of time. Such a woman may feel helpless to change an abusive situation. Ovarian cancer can develop rapidly due to a precipitating psychosocial trauma.

Problems in the vulva, vagina, cervix and lower urinary tract are usually associated with a woman’s feelings of violation in her relationship with another individual or in her job. Chronic vulvar problems like pain and itching may be associated with stress from anxiety and irritation at being controlled either by a partner or a situation.

This article does not provide a complete understanding of the deeper issues involved in such conditions, but the idea of writing such an article is to make women aware of the extent they damage their bodies unknowingly when they give in to the pressures of society and do not value themselves.

Homoeopathy is a system of medicine which takes a holistic view of every problem and learning about the life situation, relationships, working lives and diet as a totality, provides us with clues to the source of the body’s distress. Homoeopathic medicines are not chemical medicine, but energy medicine, and hence work deep in the organism. With the benefits of energy medicine, we can hope to set right wrong energy patterns in the human system. Only with time and a commitment from the patient to seriously look into one’s life patterns as co-operation in the curative process, can real healing take place.

In connection with this topic, there is an interesting book by Dr. Christiane Northrup, M.D. – Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom.

Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD), also known as Stein-Leventhal Syndrome, is a common cause of infertility in many young women. In this condition the follicles do not release the eggs normally in every menstrual cycle; multiple cysts are formed in the ovaries.

It is not really known why PCOD occurs. The polycystic ovaries are a sign of hormonal malfunction. Hormones can be affected by a woman’s emotions, thoughts, diet and personal history. A few cases are genetic and run in families, but most cases have no such familial link.

As Homoeopaths are practitioners who adopt the holistic approach, we are aware that when there is a problem with something so complex as the ovulation process, there may be a problem with the regulatory mechanism of the menstrual cycle in the brain. We know that the brain is affected by emotional and psychological factors such as stress and repressed pain in the past. Where ovarian functioning is concerned, it has been found that negative feelings about being female or feelings of inferiority are often present.


  • Obesity
  • Excess hair growth on face and body (hirsutism)
  • Irregular and infrequent or absent menses with infrequent or absent ovulation
  • Acne with greasy skin
  • Miscarriages
  • Infertility

A diagnosis of PCOD can be made based on the symptom picture the patient presents with, confirmed by blood tests and USG (ultrasonography) of the abdomen and pelvis. The blood tests are done to check the levels of the hormones oestrogen, progesterone, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinising hormone (LH), testosterone and DHEA.

Women with PCOD are at higher risk of developing other illnesses like high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and uterine cancer.

Exercise and reducing body weight are important parts of the treatment of PCOD as they can reduce the risk of developing other illnesses. Having regular periods is important for the woman to reduce the risk of uterine cancer.

Since conventional medicine doesn’t know the cause of most of the cases of PCOD, treatment is aimed at quelling the symptoms only. Most women are therefore prescribed birth control pills and anti-androgenic drugs to create cyclic menstrual periods. Women suffering from infertility are prescribed drugs which induce ovulation temporarily. These treatments, though helpful, do not address the lack of ovulation or the hormonal status of the brain.
Homoeopaths believe that treatment should be aimed at setting the basic cause right and not just targeting each individual problem separately in the complex of PCOD.

Patients have to realise that PCOD does not have to be a lifelong chronic condition. Emotions have to be heeded and not suppressed. Going out in natural light as much as possible is beneficial in re-establishing hormonal balance. Diet should be well-balanced and full of nutritious items. Junk food should be avoided. A regular exercise programme should be followed.

Homoeopathic treatment involves a detailed case taking wherein all emotional, intellectual and physical aspects of the patient are considered before the main remedy is chosen. Such a chosen constitutional remedy works at deep levels setting right the basic imbalance in the body. It is seen that patients respond well to such treatment and regular menstrual cycles are soon established. Over a period of 1-2 years, all cysts in the ovaries also disappear and the woman can lead a normal healthy life without further treatment.

Nowadays Noise Pollution has become rampant in our society, and most of the time we put up with it, partly because we have no idea about what steps can be taken to control it. We tolerate the discomfort others put us through, but it is necessary to be aware of what influence noise has on our bodies, apart from the basic nuisance of having to listen to unwanted noise.

EFFECT ON HEARING: The ability to hear is one of our most precious gifts. Without it, it is very difficult to lead a full life. The damage done by noise depends mainly on how loud it is and on the length of exposure. The frequency or pitch can also have some effect, since high-pitched sounds are more damaging than low-pitched ones. Initially, loud noise tires out the inner ear, leading to temporary hearing loss. However, with continual noise exposure, the ear will lose its ability to recover from temporary hearing loss, and the damage will become permanent. Permanent hearing loss results from the destruction of cells in the inner ear-cells which can never be replaced or repaired. Such damage can be caused by long-term exposure to loud noise or, in some cases, by brief exposures to very loud noises.

EFFECT ON OTHER BODY SYSTEMS: Excessive noise can not only destroy the ability to hear, but may also put stress on other parts of the body. Affecting the heart, noise can cause quickened pulse rate, increased blood pressure and a narrowing of the blood vessels. Over a long period of time, these may place an added burden on the heart. People exposed to noise sometimes complain of nervousness, sleeplessness and fatigue. Excessive noise exposure also can reduce job performance and may cause high rates of absenteeism. People living near airports, railway tracks, busy roads, or other noise-emitting facilities consider sleep disturbance as the most deleterious effect of noise. The data suggest that these noises might affect mood, well-being, and performance the next day. Sleep disturbances are suspected to contribute eventually to the development of chronic health disorders. Most reviewers agree that the effects on sleep depend on the physical characteristics of the noises as well as on individual and situational factors. Noise may also put stress on the body by causing the abnormal secretion of hormones and tensing of muscles. Noise causes the release of different stress hormones. The part of the brain called hypothalamus receives input from, and sends signals to, other parts of the brain, and it produces hormones that stimulate or inhibit the release of other hormones from the anterior pituitary. The pituitary hormones, in turn, stimulate or inhibit the adrenal gland to secrete its hormones, one of the major adrenal hormones being Cortisol. The whole complex interaction of the Hypothalamus, Pituitary and Adrenal Glands is very important and in medical terms, we call it the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis of the body. The effects of longer-lasting activation of the HPA-axis, especially long term increase of cortisol, are manifold: immune suppression, insulin resistance (e.g. diabetes), cardiovascular diseases (e.g. hypertension and arteriosclerosis), catabolism (e.g. ostoeporosis), intestinal problems (e.g. stress ulcer) etc. Even worse may be the widespread effects of other hormones outside the hypothalamic system, which have the potential to influence nearly all regulatory systems, causing other medical conditions as signs of disturbed hormonal balance.

EFFECT ON CHILDREN: Compared to earlier years, the lives of children are getting noisier and noisier. Noise levels of the environment, like road traffic, railway sounds, aircraft, etc., have increased considerably. Noise levels at school have also increased dramatically, where more and more use of mikes and amplifiers is being made to reach out to a large number of students. Outdoor leisure activities of children and toys have also become more noisy. Even at home, a large number of households encourage TV sets remaining on for a major part of the day. All this contributes in creating an almost permanently noisy atmosphere for children.
Children possess less well-developed coping responses, and are often less able to control their environments, and as a result effects of noise seem to be more harmful to children in many ways. Aggressive behaviour and hyperactivity seem to be, in part, a consequence of this everlasting noise exposure that children face today.
The information available on noise-induced effects on the fetus shows hearing impairment associated with exposure to high occupational noise levels during pregnancy. On-going research indicates that growth retardation of the child may also be associated with extensive occupational noise exposure of the pregnant mother. It cannot be excluded, but is seems unlikely, that environmental noise causes fetal abnormalities. This may however, be due to lack of proper methods to ascertain this possibility.
Babies who are born pre-term, have to cope with their environment with immature organ systems, especially, the auditory, visual and central nervous systems, which are the last systems to mature. These last stages occur, in part, during the time the pre-term child is in the incubator or neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Studies need to be conducted to evaluate thoroughly, what effect excessive noise might have on the developing auditory system which would be more vulnerable to hearing impairment.
Where children are concerned, sleep is very important for good health, and studies do show that sleep patterns get disturbed from exposure to noise. As children grow, it has been found that there is a considerable difference in the blood pressures of those exposed to road traffic noise and those not exposed. However, where aircraft noise is concerned, studies show that children adapt to aircraft noise without any major ill effects, this adaptation is not seen in cases of road traffic noise exposure.
Development of reading skills seems to be affected adversely in school children with a long-term exposure to high levels of traffic noise from either aircraft, road or railway traffic. Long term noise-exposed children also seem to suffer from difficulty in concentration and difficulty in focusing their attention, esp. when someone is speaking to them. This perhaps occurs because children learn how to ignore sound stimuli as a way to cope with long-term noise exposure. Unfortunately, this tuning out process may over-generalise so that children learn to tune out not only noise, but also relevant other auditory signals, such as speech.
In families where noise is a part of daily living, parents too seem to be less attentive to their children. This could affect the confidence levels of children as well. Some studies showed that children highly exposed to environmental noise for prolonged periods of time are less motivated when placed in situations where task performance is dependent on persistence. Prolonged exposure to uncontrollable noise seems to induce feelings of helplessness and behavioural patterns which also reflect helplessness. As the child continues to struggle unsuccessfully with an uncontrollable stimulus, it eventually learns that it is helpless to do anything about the situation, as manifested by feelings of hopelessness and reduced persistence. However, personal character traits of a child modify this to a significant extent.
Where teenagers are concerned, studies have concentrated only on the effects of noise causing noise-induced hearing impairment. Listening to music through head phones certainly causes hearing impairment at loud volumes.

According to the National Institute of Occupational Health, continuous exposure to noise levels above 90 decibels can produce adverse auditory and non-auditory health effects. If we want to reduce the chances of these adverse health effects happening to ourselves and to our loved ones, it is essential that every one of us protests whenever someone exposes us to high noise levels and it is our duty, in turn, to see that we do not expose someone else to our noise.