Lifestyle

Let’s Talk About Turner Syndrome: Part 2

Part 2 has taken me longer to get up than I would have liked but I wanted to be sure that I covered absolutely everything. If you haven’t read part 1 then you can check that out here and I really recommend that you do because that’s where I explain what the disorder is.

I’m going to jump in where I left off which was talking about the hormonal impacts of Turner Syndrome. Hormones do have some massive benefits for our body and when you don’t create them naturally, that can have quite an impact.

One of the biggest benefits to come from oestrogen is bone strength which means that Turners’ girls are more susceptible to things like osteoporosis (weak/brittle bones). Normally the hormones that we get from the Hormone Replacement Therapy HRT are enough to avoid us developing anything like that but that isn’t always the case. For me personally, I have never had any issues with my bones but I do go for a bone density scan every few years just to check that they’re healthy and strong. I also make sure to include more calcium in my diet to be on the safe side which definitely works in favour of my coffee addiction 🙂

Hormones are also one of the key things that factor into your energy levels which means we (Turner’s girls) are naturally a little bit more fatigued than other females. While the pill does give us some hormones, they’re still not at natural levels. The fatigue is a lot more prevalent when it comes to taking a break from the pill for periods because then our hormone levels completely drop. It does leave you feeling totally deflated but on those days I just try to take it easy and use any energy that I have on things that absolutely have to be done like meeting deadlines or going to classes. This means my life is less disrupted than it might otherwise be.

The next part I’m going to talk about is of an incredibly sensitive nature and it is to do with fertility. If this is something that could be potentially triggering to you or if you’re a Turner’s parent reading this to your child and you haven’t had the conversation with them yet … you may want to consider stopping reading here.

I mentioned in my previous post that Turner Syndrome is not genetic and the reason for that is sadly infertility. Due to it being a disorder of the sex chromosomes, the reproductive system is heavily impacted and we don’t develop ovaries or if some of us do … they are not functional. Eggs do not develop properly and they would very unlikely be viable if they did.

I wasn’t initially going to mention this but after a lot of thought, I realised that this is the part of Turners that will and has had the largest impact on my life. I have personally found infertility the most difficult thing to come to terms with because I feel like I have always had very strong maternal instincts; I thought I would never get to act on those which caused a great deal of depression.

However, as I have grown older, I have come to realise that just because I won’t be able to have a child the way I had expected, that doesn’t mean that I won’t be able to have one. Adoption and even egg donation are both options; I will have a child to love and raise … it will be my child.

My journey to parenthood will not be an easy one but it will be totally worth it in the end.

The final thing that I want to comment on is the vision and hearing impairments that are common among Turner’s girls. When I was a little girl I had two very lazy eyes and they liked to do their own thing; I wore glasses to help centre them up until the age of 7 when I had an operation to correct them. The operation worked for the most part but my right eye still likes to go for a walk when I’m tired – I started wearing glasses again at 16 because it was discovered I was short-sighted.

I have a little bit of difficulty with my hearing but it has never been anything major. I had frequent ear infections as a child and wore a hearing aid due to glue ear, but thankfully that corrected itself. I haven’t had an infection in so long that I can’t actually remember how old I was; I do have a small amount of hearing loss in my right ear but it is nothing that hinders my life.

There isn’t really much else I can say that comes from my own personal experience and so I’m going to leave it there. There are so many different symptoms to Turner’s and as I said, I haven’t experienced them all; I don’t feel it is is my place to comment on how they may affect those who have. There are a lot of physical characteristics that come with Turner’s but there is not much I can say about them apart from simply listing them and they’re all available to see on the NHS website.

I hope these last two posts have been informative for you guys and that you’ve come away with a clearer understanding of what the disorder is and how it may manifest.

If you are a girl with Turner’s reading this and have experienced something that I have not, please feel free to pop it in the comments (only if you feel comfortable of course) so that people can read others experiences too.

Please never hesitate to message me through my socials because I am always there to listen.

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My next post isn’t going to be Turners related but I am really looking forward to continuing the conversation and begging my Turners series.

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