We've all heard of the common symptoms associated with hormone imbalance like weight gain, insomnia and hot flashes. Here are 6 of the strange symptoms that could be a sign that your hormones are out of whack. Our hormones have a complicated relationship with our Central Nervous System as well as our Cardiovascular Systems, as you're about to discover.
1. Burning Tongue Syndrome
I am happy to say I have never experienced this less-common symptom of hormone imbalance but for some menopausal women it is their reality. It is a painful and very uncomfortable sensation which feels (or so I'm told) just like you've burned your tongue sipping on a hot beverage. You probably won't have any physical signs of a burn in your mouth, but your mouth might feel dry, sticky or itchy and you might even have a metallic taste in your mouth. Interestingly, for some women it get's worse throughout the day and feels better at night.
2. Formication - Crawling Skin Sensation
No, not fornication - formication. It is the unimaginably horrible sensation of having the feeling of small insects crawling on or under your skin! It results in itchiness and of course, most of us would scratch. The scratching can lead to damaging the skin.
3. Tingling Extremities - (known as Paresthesia)
This symptom brings on a numb feeling or 'pins and needles' usually in your feet and legs or hands and arms. I had this symptom after my 3rd baby was born and it would last for only a few seconds each time. I didn't have a clue what it was and it was quite scary. Little did I know at the time, nor did my doctor, that it was associated to the sudden drop in hormone levels. Fortunately for me, when I got my hormones balanced this irritating symptom went away.
4. Electric Shock Sensation
Can you imagine feeling like you're being given an electric shock throughout your day? Well, it is another one of those strange symptoms of hormone imbalance. Even though they last for only a second - it must be very irritating and unnerving for women who experience them. Often they are across the head and sometimes the sensation occurs right before a hot flash. Oh Joy.
5. Sudden Muscular Weakness &/or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
After my 3rd baby was born, I would suddenly have weakness in my arm that would only last for a few moments but it would happen suddenly so I was afraid of dropping my baby. Again, for me as soon as my hormones got balanced I was relieved of this irritating symptom. It may have been a sign of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome which is also linked to hormone imbalance.
6. Frozen Shoulder - Adhesive Capsulitis
This is an inability to move one or both shoulders and can be very painful. It is most common in women and especially women in perimenopause and menopause. Not all doctors will talk about hormone imbalance on this one. I've heard of doctors who don't realize it can be related to hormones. And don't forget, many other joint problems/pain can also have a hormonal cause.
There are other causes for all of these symptoms - it is never a good idea to self-diagnose so please discuss these symptoms with your doctor!
Again, I know many of us with hormone issues discuss these with our doctor, only to be told "it's in our head" (thankfully I've never been told that but I know numerous women who have been) or that the symptoms aren't related to hormones. As always, be an empowered patient: do your homework and advocate for yourself!