Anxiety Community
23k Members
446896 tn?1237806342

Anxiety and hormonal imbalance?

Hey all,

I have talked to a few women my age (25-35 range) and they were put on birth control pills for their anxiety & depression.  One is taking Yaz and another is wearing the patch.  I have also had it said to me many times that the sudden onset of this more extreme anxiety that I have been experiencing the last few months, in addition to the fact that I'm broke out like a 16 year-old,  might very well be a hormonal imbalance---too much estrogen maybe.  I have not taken any birth control since 2003, and at that time I was on a 3-phase pill.  I also have no children. What I'm hearing success with is the single-phase, low estrogen contraceptives---the ones that keep a steady flow of hormones in your system throughout the month.

Has anyone had any success with treating anxiety/depression symptoms with birth control?  I have read a lot of bad things on other forums, but for the ladies I know personally, they seem to swear by it. (and yes, I know that my doctor will be the best decider of this, but I like to research on my own before I approach him with it)

Please let me know your experiences...have a good weekend! :)
5 Responses
Avatar universal
I am much older than,almost 55, and I do believe that hormones play apart in anxiety. I had gone 2 years without a period so I believed that I had sailed into menopause with no problems. Well, after 2 years I got a full blown period and that  was 2 years ago this coming July. Nothing in my life has been the same since. I was always a nervous Nelly and always a worrier, but nothing like what I'm going through now. I joked with my Dr. that I feel like a fell off the hormone cliff or was pushed. So even though you are so much younger than I, I think hormones really can effect our mental state.

Hopefully, this helped you a little, but my experience is all I have to share. Best of luck to you and hopefully you have a Dr. that really listens to you. That's half the battle.
370181 tn?1428180348
I think it's great that you are doing some research before you approach you gyno. Being "armed" with knowledge gives you power.
At 57 and way past menopause, I don't think I am in a position to help with your question. In my day, the "pill" pretty much in a one size fits all box and the level of estrogen in them was frightening! Today, you young women have so much more knowledge and so many more choices, I can only envy you.
I work with many younger women then myself and as we all know, we women eventually get around to talking about our periods. If you have spoken with other women who say that various contraceptive meds have helped with their anxiety, than you should ask your doctor if that is indeed one of the "good" side effects of that particular drug. I personally have never heard of a birth control pill helping anyone with REAL anxiety issues. Menopause is sometimes the first time in a woman's life that she experience anxiety, it often comes with the territory, but they aren't given birth control pills for it.
So, essentially, my advice is worthless. I urge you to continue to educate yourself about what is out there and applaud you for that...........and as you said, it will eventually be you and your gyno who decide what is best for you.
That you have been experiencing more anxiety in the past few months and breaking out like a 16 year old, I believe that would send up a red flag for me to see my gyno sooner rather than later. Believe it or not, you are not too young to have begun to experience perimenopause, and your symptoms are classic. Or, you could indeed just be having a bout of out of whack hormones for some reason, but those are, once again, reasons only your doctor can explain. Either way, I would make an appointment soon and discuss all of this with them.
Good luck and we'll be waiting to welcome you into the "RED HAT SOCIETY!"
446896 tn?1237806342
Thank you ladies for your responses.  I saw a homeopathic doctor today, and he doesnt suspect hormones.  I will keep you all posted!
Avatar universal
.can anybody advise me what pill their doctors gave them as i think i have hormonal imbalance,started getting terrible anxiety attacks,i am 39,doc just prescribed beta blocker for 1 week only for my racing heart but i constantly feel sick,so would a low oestrogen pill help?any answers please
Avatar universal
I HAVE RECOVERED! And I want to share my story because I went searching for answers all over the internet when these problems were happening to me, and not many people had comments about being better. I'm sure many of them just moved on with their lives as I almost did. But I came back to these forums to post so that whoever is hurting might know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Keep hope alive. I did not have much hope at that time, but now I am absolutely fine :)

It all began when I went on birth control as suggested by my gyno because my periods were not happening every month like clockwork and this concerned her. But after awhile, I started getting bad headaches, so I quit them cold turkey after 3 months. Well, I was fine for awhile until a few weeks passed. Then my world changed forever.

One day I randomly started feeling extreme anxiety, a problem I have never experienced in my life. I could not eat or sleep no matter how long it had been since I had eaten and no matter how tired I knew I was. My body went haywire and it scared me to death. I was terrified, questioned my faith and my salvation, and did not want to be alone in case I died (irrational thoughts).

I went to a psychologist, tried herbs, everything... My regular doctor and gyno wanted me to either get on a drug for anxiety/depression, or get back on birth control. But my mom reasoned that I was fine before birth control and learned from researching online that birth control was probably the cause of these problems in the first place. We decided to stay away from more drugs and wait it out.

My episode of terror lasted a week the first time and I lost 13 pounds. I did not want to do anything, even get in the shower or change. I felt frozen in place, paralyzed by fear, but was still miserable sitting still. I seriously felt like I was going crazy. My heart seemed heavy and sometimes a muscle in my neck hurt too. Any little symptom scared me because I was in an irrational state. I thought I might just drop dead or pass out. Well, instead I dropped out of my last semester of college and moved home.

I thought maybe I was out of the woods when my week-long episode ended, but exactly a month after the first week-long episode, I had another one, this time at home. I was also having some sort of light bleeding every 2 weeks, which was abnormal for me. The feelings of anxiety and fear returned and I went another week without eating or sleeping much at all. Now I really began to worry that I was ruined for life. The world looked so scary and I did not want to live because I was scared of what I would have to deal with - I felt incapable of handling it. I did not want to die either because I was scared of that too. I hated birth control and was mad that I could not talk myself out of these crazy/racing thoughts going on in my mind. I prayed and prayed and felt sort of abandoned to be honest. Why couldn't I feel like my old self? Would this condition last for years? And why couldn't I handle this better?

I was really tempted to go on Paxil or birth control that time, but decided I would wait it out one more time. It felt like hell during these episodes but as long as I ate when I could, laid down at night, and just kept breathing in and out nothing serious was really happening even though I believed it was. I did dry heave a couple times but that was from panicky thoughts and was the least of my worries. Anyway, I was still having weird bleeding every couple of weeks and my acne was really bad, so I knew it was indeed hormone related and most likely the birth control that started all this.

SUMMARY: I quit birth control July 16, 2012 and had the 2 week-long episodes of extreme anxiety/depression. However after that I only had a couple more episodes! This time 3 days long and not as severe. November 10, 2012 was the last time I felt that abnormal/irrational anxiety feeling. Today it is January 7, 2013 and I feel completely fine. The weird, light bleeding is no longer 2 weeks apart. Instead I have relatively normal periods like I used to be before all this happened that are a month or more apart.

I feel like the same person I was before experiencing this except I have some questions about my faith. It humbled me for sure. But I am searching for answers, and I know God is faithful. This terrible ordeal will only make me stronger in the future. I believe it is getting better and better with time and that all this was caused by synthetic hormones which caused an imbalance in my body. This seriously altered the messages my brain was receiving. Hormones are more important than I knew before.

I suggest not going on drugs unless you have to and to wait it out. Doctors can help, sure, but also be your own advocate. Search online and consult the ones who care about you the most. If you do not have a history of anything like this, it is probably not really your mind but your body that is sick. But I am not a health professional. Just don't be too hard on yourself like I was. You are not the only one who has gone through this. Surround yourself with patient people who love you during your anxiety or other symptomatic episodes and if you don't have those people, pray to God and just breathe. Time will go a long way to heal you because it did for me. Hang in there and eat when you can, sleep when you can. Don't worry about the rest.

I am so sorry if any of you are going through this. I hope it ends soon. But if you are, know that it is most likely temporary. Don't try to fight it and question everything about your universe - just keep breathing. A better day is ahead.
Have an Answer?
Top Anxiety Answerers
Avatar universal
Arlington, VA
370181 tn?1428180348
Arlington, WA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Find out what can trigger a panic attack – and what to do if you have one.
A guide to 10 common phobias.
Take control of tension today.
These simple pick-me-ups squash stress.
Don’t let the winter chill send your smile into deep hibernation. Try these 10 mood-boosting tips to get your happy back
Want to wake up rested and refreshed?