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Hormonal Imbalance in Teenagers

by
author image Martin Green
Based in London, Martin Green has written news, health and sport articles since 2008. His articles have appeared in “Essex Chronicle," “The Journal” and various regional British newspapers. Green holds a Master of Arts in creative writing from Newcastle University and a Bachelor of Arts in English literature.
Hormonal Imbalance in Teenagers
Stress is a major reason for hormonal imbalance in teenagers. Photo Credit stress image by Andrii IURLOV from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Teenage years are a stressful time as your body goes through a number of changes. The hormones your body begins to produce allow you to procreate, but they also change your appearance and behavior. Hormonal imbalance occurs when hormonal secretions in your body are disrupted, which often leads to depression, anxiety, headaches and other problems. It can be extremely frustrating for parents of teenagers. If your child displays symptoms of hormonal imbalance, consult a doctor.

Changes

Being a teenager today comes with a lot of pressure, and this leads to hormonal imbalance. Your body's hormones are controlled by adrenal glands, and when you are stressed your adrenals tire and begin to produce cortisol, a steroid that leads to hormonal imbalance. This leads to weight retention, known as puppy fat.

Causes

Exams, dating, getting into college, death of a relative, family instability, social pressures, arguments and pressures to achieve are just some of the causes of the stress that leads to hormonal imbalance in teenagers. On top of this, chemicals in the air and in a teenager's food are enough to cause hormonal imbalance. Farmed fish and dairy products have added hormones, and the junk food and sodas children are exposed to nowadays can leave them overloaded with hormones as teenagers. Beauty products, acne creams, pesticides in the air, plastics and cleaning products also contribute to hormonal imbalance in teenagers.

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Symptoms

Indications and side-effects of hormonal imbalance in teenagers include mood swings, depression, insomnia, aggression, confusion, growing withdrawn, fatigue, emotional instability and irritability. Away from behavioral changes, reported symptoms of hormonal imbalance include acne, nausea, regular headaches or migraines, back pain, asthma, breast swelling, hives, seizures, sore throat, sinus problems and urinary difficulties. These symptoms may go away, but if they persist, it is important you consult your doctor.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, or PCOS, is a condition that occurs in females with a hormonal imbalance. According to the U.S. National Institute of Health, it is most common in women in their 20s but may also affect teenage girls. Around 5 to 10 percent of teens and young women experience it, according to the Center for Young Women's Health. When there is an imbalance in female sex hormones, small cysts may appear in your ovaries, and this can lead to irregular period, acne, hair growth and dark skin markings. Excess male hormones will also lead to your voice deepening, hair appearing on your chest, a reduction of your breasts and development of other male characteristics. If you have any of these symptoms, consult your doctor.

Treatment

Hormone saliva tests will let you know if you are suffering from hormonal imbalance. Hormone supplements or precursors are available to restore the balance in your body. If hormonal imbalance is caused by a tumor, which is secreting hormones, surgery could restore your body to normality. Consult your doctor and decide the best route for you.

Considerations

Less drastic measures to counter hormonal imbalance in teenagers include simple things like eating a healthy, balanced diet and sleeping well. Choose natural beauty products free from chemicals. Drink water that is purified, not bottled in a plastic container. Cut out alcohol, tobacco, soda and junk food. Exercise regularly. A healthier, more active lifestyle will combat hormonal imbalance.

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References

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