When using natural progesterone cream for the first time (or even changing brands, for that matter), it is important to understand that the body needs time to adjust. Symptoms may change or increase for a time, but if they do, it’s usually just for a few days. If the symptoms last longer than that, it is usually indicative of not being used correctly – as in too little, or not often enough. In most cases, a minimum 2-6 months is required for total adjustment of the body and for progesterone to become dominant over estrogen as the desired result.
Is it possible to use to much natural progesterone? Not necessarily, as the excess is easily eliminated naturally from the body. Keep in mind, the use of higher doses of progesterone for long periods of time isn’t necessary if it is not needed for the specific symptoms. To start, most recommendations are 100-200 mg per day and is more often than not sufficient. Extreme symptoms often times will need to have more progesterone added (usually 25 mg. at a time and watch for changes) at first until the symptoms subside; once those symptoms are gone, then the amount can slowly be reduced.
During pregnancy, large amounts of progesterone are naturally produced as a protective measure for the fetus. Very high doses are also used by doctors in cases of traumatic brain injury as a protective measure for the brain, upwards of 1400 mg. at a time. Dr. Katharina Dalton prescribed 2400 mg./day for patients suffering from psychotic symptoms, and 800 mg for nausea.
The recommendations of using a minimum dose of 100 – 200 mg./day is for the purpose of avoiding the problems of estrogen dominance and the symptoms caused by that. That is the reason that many times more is needed in the beginning. The higher the progesterone, the more it ‘squashes’ the estrogen and keeps the proper progesterone to estrogen ratios to avoid the problems of estrogen dominance. If an increase from the lower recommended amounts is required, once the symptoms have cleared, reducing the amount slowly until getting back down to no less that 100 mg./day seems to have the best benefit, according to experts.
Many advise using 10-40 mg. of natural progesterone per day, but that is not sufficient and usually just makes matters worse. Small amounts are like a ‘tease’ to the estrogen receptors. Studies show that higher amounts yield the best response, whereas lower amounts simply aggravate the estrogen receptors, which sadly makes people think that the progesterone isn’t working. It is important to use high enough amounts so that it can work effectively with your body, not against it.
Natural products are not a quick fix, as they are used to inherently support the body in a way that allows the body to adjust and correct itself. It is very common when using natural products to have what is called a ‘healing crisis‘, to where things seem to get better before they get worse. Expecting things to magically ‘fix’ after just several days won’t allow you the time to see reversal of condition into a state of well-being. Depending on what the symptoms are and how much estrogen you have, some people can take 2-6 months or longer to see positive results.
Natural USP Progesterone is meant to be used according to the individuals symptoms. Studies have shown that for females no less than 100 mg. is the most effective. Higher doses are sometimes needed to address particular concerns. Using too little or stopping too soon can cause unresolved symptoms to return. It should be used at a minimum twice a day, at the same time each day as the levels of progesterone begin to decline after 13 hours and it is most effective to keep the levels as stable as possible.
The most common reasons that women use natural, bio-identical, USP progesterone are because of the symptoms of irregular menstrual cycles, heavy bleeding, cramps, PMS symptoms, PCOS, anxiety and other similar symptoms linked to unbalanced hormones. Because irregular cycles make it difficult to ‘cycle’ the use of progesterone during the luteal phase (days 13-28) of the menstrual cycle, the recommendation by many doctors is to use the cream every day for 2-6 months until the menstrual cycle adjusts itself to a normal pattern and the adverse symptoms disappear. Once your body is adjusted, you will see that even using the cream every day will result in normalizing the cycle to its intended pattern. Even if you have a regular cycle, it is advised by experts to still use the cream for the same amount of time (2-6 months) every day until the symptoms in question have cleared. Remember that even switching brands, while maintaining the same dosage, can result in changes in your symptoms due to the difference in ingredients and/or concentration of USP progesterone.
Because everyone has their own unique makeup, each person will react in their own way and that may be different from others. One person may experience discomfort, and another may not. In the case of very high estrogen levels, or with women who have been on synthetic hormone replacement therapy HRT or on birth control pills for long periods of time, their progesterone levels might be lower than most. These women could possibly experience things like water retention, headaches, weight gain, changes in sleep patterns and more. It is important to persevere with the progesterone cream until the uncomfortable symptoms ease. They will ease, if you are using natural progesterone correctly and don’t stop immediately. Reports of women using as much as 400 mg. to start has been helpful to prevent estrogen dominance adverse symptoms. Increasing the amount of natural progesterone cream to a level that allows you to stabilize for a week or more can be helpful for improvement before you begin to slowly reduce the amounts, 25 mg. at a time with a waiting period of approximately a week in between each reduction. This allows for the body to adjust at a balanced rate so that you can see where your personal ‘sweet spot’ is.
With the proper use of natural progesterone, estrogen will decrease in its position of dominance and allow progesterone to take its rightful dominant place in your hormone balance, allowing for recovery from estrogen dominant symptoms.