Nobody would call menopause a disease, so calling the negative side effects of it ‘symptoms’ is not technically correct. However, this period of a woman’s life comes with certain side effects that often feel overwhelming.
It doesn’t help the fact that many of the symptoms overlap, causing a cascading effect of introducing more problems. However, one thing is for certain – there is a way to keep things under control. Whether it be a specialised bioidentical hormone replacement therapy or some other treatment, women can regain back their health and wellbeing. In the following guide, we take a look at several of the symptoms that are most commonly associated with menopause, as well as how they can be treated:
- Hot flashes – perhaps the most common symptom of menopause is hot flashes. Also referred to as vasomotor symptoms, these begin as early as perimenopause. They last a long time. It is believed they are set off by an area in the hypothalamus and emerge as a way for the body to cool itself. There are a few things that can help with hot flashes. For starters, reducing hot beverages, caffeine, alcohol and smoking can minimise the occurrence of this symptom. Dressing in layers and wearing light clothes also helps the situation. Drinking plenty of water, especially in the warmer months of the year, is an absolute necessity for every woman out there.
- Vaginal changes – the decreasing levels of oestrogen thin the vaginal lining and diminish the vaginal secretions. This results in dryness and irritation, as well as reduced sex drive. In some women there is also the condition of atrophic vaginitis that develops, which requires immediate treatment, or else it leads to more ulceration and vaginal thinning. The best way to address this kind of symptom is to consider a vaginal lubricant or moisturiser. Any kind of treatment applied in the form of tablets, creams and rings can be helpful.
- Weight gain – there are a lot of viable strategies when it comes to combating weight gain in women of this age group. Doing light exercise remains the best possible strategy for minimising this issue. A balanced diet will also assist in keeping a healthy weight.
- Insomnia – during menopause, many women complain about insomnia. The problem is usually caused by hot flashes during the night. Implementing a strict bedtime routine can help with the problem. Limiting screen time before going to sleep and always going to sleep at about the same time each night is a fine way to counter insomnia symptoms.
- Dry skin/hair – with age, the skin becomes less capable of retaining moisture and it is the declining levels of oestrogen that have a lot to do with it. One way to remedy the situation is to stop smoking because it has a notable effect on the skin. Another thing is to be more protective of the skin when it comes to sun exposure.
- Concentration and memory problems – the most likely factor that creates these symptoms is stress during menopause. One of the best ways to maintain good brain health is to stay physically active. Aiming for at least 150 minutes of physical exercise per week is a good goal. Also, women who strive to use their mind in different ways also experience less concentration and memory problems. Solving puzzles, playing board games or just learning a new skill are all proven ways to accomplish this task.
All of these symptoms are common enough during menopause. Knowing the right ways to address them really can contribute to better wellbeing during that period of life.
© The Natural Doctor