Types of Gender Affirming Medical Treatments

Written by Jen Bell

  |  Reviewed by Mason Dunn

Reversible treatments for younger children

Puberty blockers are medicines that block the hormones – testosterone and estrogen – that cause periods, breast growth, voice-deepening, or facial hair growth. This is a method that has had proven results and can greatly help reduce a child’s gender dysphoria. Blockers may be used either before the onset of puberty, or during puberty, to pause further changes. Once treatment is stopped, the body will produce the hormones which have been suppressed.

Partially reversible treatments for older teenagers or young adults

Many transgender people undergo estrogen or testosterone therapy. They are not a quick or all-inclusive option, and it may take months, or even years for your child to see the desired results. It is possible to begin with a very low dose, which may only cause one or two changes. Even at a higher dose, effects will not be immediate. A qualified doctor will assist in choosing the most appropriate dose, frequency, and method of hormone medication.

Permanent surgical procedures for young adults

Some transgender people undergo surgery to add or remove physical characteristics chosen by the individual and their surgeon. For young people experiencing extreme gender dysphoria, surgery may provide relief. Surgery can be one of the fastest ways to see results but can also require a lengthy vetting process, including mandatory counseling.

For more information about gender-affirming medical treatments, speak with a qualified health professional. Check our resources section for tips on finding one near you.