The truth about menopause can be tough to find with so many myths out there. Find out the real truth about menopause from Life and Cycles.
Before we look at that, let’s get a few things straight. Let’s be clear on what natural menopause actually means. Here’s the basics :-
WHAT IS MENOPAUSE?
PREMENOPAUSE is the time from your first period to your last period.
PERIMENOPAUSE is the time leading up to periods stopping and being stopped for a year. It usually last 2- 6 years, but can be longer. Women usually notice changes at this stage.
MENOPAUSE is defined as periods being stopped for at least a year.
POST MENOPAUSE is pretty much the rest of your life!
I find that when people use the word “menopause”, they actually mean. Symptoms often start in perimenopause.
Now that we’re on the same page, let’s look at the truth about menopause.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #1 MENOPAUSE IS NOT A MEDICAL CONDITION.
The truth is it’s a life stag or a transition. It’s similar to puberty or pregnancy in that respect.
I’m a Meno Maven. And I think its the beginning of an exciting new chapter, as well as the end of another.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #2 HRT IS NOT THE ONLY WAY TO GET THROUGH MENOPAUSE.
We strongly believe that we all have choices in healthcare.
It’s up to each of us decide if we want medications or procedures to relieve symptoms or not.
With all therapies,please do your research. It’s sensible to understand what’s in drugs because you might object to ingredients on moral or ethical grounds or be allergic to them. Find out what the risks and potential side effects are as well as the benefits. Drugs can rob us of nutrition over time and that can surface as new “symptoms” which can lead to more drugs! You must decide what’s best for you.
You can always start with self-care and natural therapies first then see what symptoms are left and decide how got move forward.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #3 MENOPAUSE ISN’T JUST SOMETHING YOU NEED TO WORRY WHEN YOU’RE LATE 40S OR 50S.
It’s a myth that we only need o think abut I in our late 40s and 50s. Natural menopause (a year since last period) is often around aged 50, but could be much earlier or later than that. It could be from 30s to 60s.
And as I wrote earlier, the change can take several years, anyway.
Plus some women go through menopause extremely early or are thrust into menopause through illness or surgery.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #4 YOU CAN GET PREGNANT IF YOU HAVE MENOPAUSE SYMPTOMS.
Please don’t throw away your birth control at the first sign of a hot flush, if you don’t want a baby or another baby.
The fact is that you can get pregnant when you’re perimenopausal i.e. going through the transition. You might still be releasing eggs in some of your monthly cycles. It’s not until you are post menopause i.e. a whole year after your last natural period that you won’t get pregnant.
We suggest using methods of contraception that are less harmful to health and hormones – like barrier methods or natural fertility awareness.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #5 ALL SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS IN YOUR 40S AND 50S ARE NOT NECESSARILY DOWN TO MENOPAUSE.
Of course most women experience some signs of menopause, but things like weight gain and hair thinning can simply be a result of ageing or a mix of ageing and menopause. Or something else entirely.
They could be signs of poor food and lifestyle choices. And that could be changed.
In other cases, symptoms could be down to an undiagnosed condition, so it’s always good to speak with your doctor.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #6 MENOPAUSE DOESN’T SAP YOUR BRAIN.
Memory and other brain functions change throughout life. There’s no really firm evidence that memory decline is all down to menopause.
Keep your cogs whirring with activity – physical, mental and social.
Some women get fuzzy thinking and brain fog as a symptom of menopause. In our experience, these symptoms can often be helped with good diet, drinking plenty of filtered water and getting enough, quality sleep.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #7 MENOPAUSE DOESN’T SPELL INCONTINENCE
Some women do suffer a little urinary incontinence as they mature, but it’s most likely the result of history of childbirth, less tone in pelvic floor muscles, weight gain or some medical conditions.
If you suffer with this, try toning up your pelvic floor or get in touch with your GP.
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #8 MENOPAUSE WEIGHT GAIN CAN BE AVOIDED.
I know from personal experience that weight management can become hard in our 40s and beyond. It needn’t mean piling on tons of unwanted pounds, though.
During perimenopause and menopause, our ovaries make fewer sex hormones and that can lead to hormone imbalances.
Our bodies are “helpful” (?!) and try to protect us by storing fat around the waist, hips, and thighs. Fat stored here produces more oestrogen, which in turn, leads to even more fat being produced.
The more oestrogen deficient you are, the more fat can stick to your hips and thighs.
BUT, you can still achieve a healthy weight. Eating for nutrition and choosing carbs wisely can help loads,
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #9 NOT EVERYONE’S SEX-DRIVE NOSE DIVES
I smile when I reminder how one lovely client said to me about menopause and dwindling libido “Lordy, I hope not. You can shoot me now!” or something like that, anyway. Lots of women fear loss of sex-drive and any impact on their relationships.
We can still enjoy sex as we mature.
Hormone imbalances can impact sex-drive at any age., anyway. For example, low thyroid function can lead to reduced sex-drive.
And other factors impact it – stress, tiredness, depression, too much alcohol, general health and much more.
During peri/menopause, some women suffer vaginal dryness, itching or bouts cystitis, making sex painful or risking bladder infection. That means they don’t want to do it and that’s totally understandable. Natural lubricants (we can recommend some), good probiotics and cranberries/unsweetened and natural cranberry juice/cranberry extract supplement might help.
Other women can feel less sexy or attractive when their bodies are going through changes. Most likely, your partner still finds you attractive.
Testosterone decreases after menopause for some which can also spell lower sex-drive. It’s the hormone that affects libido, so some women will notice differences in their desire.
For other women sex-drive increases after the “change”, possibly as a result of not worrying about unwanted pregnancy or because reduced oestrogen makes testosterone more dominant?
THE TRUTH ABOUT MENOPAUSE #10 IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT THE HOT FLUSHES
Every women gets hot flushes and night sweats, right? No. They are a common symptom, but not everyone gets them.
Did you know they are whole bunch of symptoms linked to menopause? Some women have them and don’t even make the connection.
Here’s some other common signs of perimenopause and menopause:-
- Irregular periods or heavy periods
- Mood swings
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
- Fuzzy thinking
- Lower libido
But there are other less common like burning tongue, allergies and itching.
So what does all this mean?
It means that menopause is a life stage and transition and every women experiences it very differently. It’s hard to generalise.
Speak with your doctor for tests, diagnosis and to discuss options, if you’re worried.
Super self-care goes a long way to help relieve symptoms, not just of menopause, but of getting older generally. Please get in touch with us to see how we can help relieve your symptoms and soothe body and mind.