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Saliva Testing - You Asked, We Answered!

We asked our amazing ladies, what do YOU want to know about our just-launched Saliva testing - and (as always) you let us know! Here are some of the questions that have already been answered in our Super Saliva (Testing) Blog!

Once I complete a hormone test, then what?

Once you complete your test, and send it back to the lab, your saliva samples will be tested and the Test Report is reviewed by a clinician who may add some comments. This can help you understand your hormone picture, and decide if you need more support from your doctor.

Is it secure? Who has access to it?

Yes. The lab we work with is CLIA certified, and the results portal is HIPAA compliant. The clinician who reviews your report will see the results, but no one else will (except you, of course!).

Will I be able to figure out which PG products I need to use/adjust to balance my hormones?

An example of the hormone report can be viewed here {LINK}. Our customer care team are not clinicians and so cannot make recommendations. We continue to provide educational information to help you think through your options. We plan to offer a Results Interpretation Service option for those who want to talk with a Health coach to understand their Test Report in more detail.

Can I still test if I've had a hysterectomy but still have my ovaries. Will it help me adjust which product to use when. I'm 66; is there an age cutoff when results might not be as accurate as they should be.

Yes! Just because our bodies are no longer in a reproductive phase, it does not mean we are done with hormones. The test is accurate for any age and the information you fill out on the forms tells the lab which reference ranges to set for your results.

Will it show topical Progesterone is absorbed and actually protects the uterus?

Yes, saliva hormone testing shows the actual amount of circulating progesterone (and other hormones) you have in your body. Blood tests don’t show hormone levels if you are using hormone creams. Doctors who use blood tests to measure topical hormones don’t see the hormones in the test and so assume that the progesterone isn’t absorbed. That’s not the case - blood testing is not an effective method to measure topical hormones.

What hormones are being tested? A list of all hormones would be great. Is anything besides hormones being tested or is there any other testing that would help balance hormones?

There is a full list on our Super Saliva (Testing) Blog - and you also have the option to add a cortisol test on to the menopause hormone panel.

What is the level of accuracy?

Saliva hormone testing is very accurate. The lab we work with has even been certified to test samples for New York residents - this is a very difficult certification to achieve and it makes a valuable statement about the accuracy and reliability of the results.

How many tubes of saliva are needed? I threw out a $200 test because I couldn't produce enough without drinking water or chewing gum.

Four tubes of Saliva need to be filled at different (specific) times throughout the day. The kit has a collection straw to assist in this. To help make saliva,sniff something like a lemon (or chocolate!), as this helps the salivary glands produce enough saliva. The test comes with clear instructions regarding water and food and tooth brushing around collection time, so be sure to read those thoroughly as you don’t want to contaminate the sample.

What do we do about low testosterone if we can't get this without a prescription?

There are herbal supplements as well as lifestyle changes (increased exercise) that can help naturally increase testosterone. ReBounce DHEA can also help increase testosterone - you can learn more about that on this blog. However, Parlor Games will not be offering a testosterone cream as this requires a prescription from a doctor.

Could any of the tests be used for younger women? In the 25-35 age group.

Yes, the test can be used by younger women. Several of our team members are in their early thirties and took the tests and found out really useful information about their hormones. The lab sets different reference ranges based on menopausal status. Our tests cover a lot of crucial hormones, however, they do not cover things like follicle stimulating hormone or luteinizing hormone which are important for those who are trying to conceive.

Should you test more than once in a month to get a fuller picture of your levels? Since our Dr's say they don't like to do it because hormones fluctuate too much?

Ah - this is the beauty of working with the lab we chose. Hormones do fluctuate over the day, they are released in waves/pulses. To avoid capturing a low or a high, the lab takes a sample from each of the 4 tubes you collected over the day, combines those into a fifth tube and uses that combined amount to test hormones. This way the numbers reflect an average over the day.

Will we need to be off any HRT to test?

The instructions in the kit will give you clear guidelines about when to stop using HRT before you collect the sample - please read the instructions at least 2 days before you take the test so you are prepared. There are some specific steps to follow if you are taking any kind of HRT - and you do need to disclose type and dosage.

Which type of hormone testing do you recommend as being more reliable: saliva or blood? And what are the differences between the 2 types of testing? And should a person do both blood & saliva?

We go into this in depth in our Super Saliva (Testing) Blog! Saliva testing is ideal for those using topical supplements, or no supplements. For those taking oral or injected supplements, a blood test will also give useful information.

I am on antibiotics. Should I wait when I’m done with my course or is it okay to do the test while on it? Thanks.

You don’t need to stop antibiotics.

How would this work for people after hysterectomy who don't have periods but are not necessarily postmenopausal?

The test will show you the hormone levels that you currently have, regardless of hysterectomy status. You will report the hysterectomy, period dates, etc., in the symptom checklist, this will be factored into the Report comments.

If I do the testing, is there going to be any way to know what it means for me personally? Like where my numbers should be for my age and circumstances. And maybe advice on what to do, what to use?

Our reports give you several key pieces that others don’t: they show you your levels, they show you *optimal* hormone ranges, and they show well established supplementation guideline ranges. Additionally, your report will have customized comments from the clinician who reviews them. The Report will not make personalized recommendations which should only be made by a doctor who is working with you and knows your full health history.

Had a hysterectomy early-ish in life. Left one ovary. Will this make recommendations for some that haven't had any hormones for a long time span? Will you be adding products to your line up?

The Test Report shows you your current level of hormones. A clinician will look at the test numbers and your symptoms and write some customized comments. Recommendations for treatment can only be made by a practitioner who is working with you.

How do you figure in the fact that hormones change daily?

Ah - this is the beauty of working with the lab we chose. Hormones do fluctuate over the day, they are released in waves/pulses. To avoid capturing a low or a high, the lab takes a sample from each of the 4 tubes you collected over the day, combines those into a fifth tube and uses that combined amount to test hormones. This way the numbers reflect an average over the day.

Does anyone know what is the purpose for checking our cortisol levels and why four times a day?

Cortisol is a crucial hormone for regulating stress, sleep, weight and many metabolic and immune processes. Cortisol rises in the morning to help us wake up for the day and then gradually slows towards night time so we can relax and sleep. This pattern is known as the cortisol curve. By taking samples at 4 set times during the day and plotting that data on a graph it is possible to see YOUR cortisol curve and compare it against an optimal pattern.

Can the saliva testing enlighten me to be able to know if I could be in peri-menopause?

The symptoms you have are a good way to know that, and yes, knowing your hormone levels will also give you a clear idea of your perimenopausal status. What’s more important is you can get to see where your hormones are high and low, and that can inform your decisions about any supplementation.

For the hormone testing when I need to access the portal to retrieve results, are there specific computer hardware/software requirements?

As long as your phone is up to date and the browser is working efficiently, all you need is a regular phone or computer.