Let’s talk about it, and take it seriously
Usually when a day is designated to a specific cause or event it is meant to be celebrated, but if you ask a woman going through menopause what she thinks of Menopause Day she’ll tell you there is nothing celebratory about hot flashes, migraines, fluctuating body weight and low libido. So instead of celebrating it, this commemoratory event should be an opportunity for us to educate the world about this “special time of our lives” and to address the issues and concerns that many women (and their men) have that aren’t always openly discussed at the dinner table.
Am I too young for Menopause?
You may be aware of what menopause is and roughly when it takes place, but what you may not know is that it can start as early as the age of 30; shocking, I know. This period of time is called Peri Menopause and is characterized by irregular periods, hot flashes, night sweats, changes in mood and energy along with other physical and emotional changes. These symptoms are caused by a change in your hormonal levels. Slight changes in your estrogen, testosterone or progesterone levels can make you go from calm and cool to hot and bothered in no time!
Peri Menopause also comes with risks; the earlier you are diagnosed with Peri Menopause the higher your risk for certain types of heart problems, osteoporosis, certain cancers later in life. Other factors can contribute to an early menopause; smokers, for example, are known to experience menopause much earlier than the non-smoking population (on top of being at risk for a whole lot of other health problems!).
Some of these symptoms can be traced back to genetics and so if your mother, aunt or grandmother experienced severe menopause symptoms it may be a good idea to instruct yourself on the subject so that when the time comes for you to go through “the change” you will have prepared your body to work towards lessening those symptoms. Peri Menopause and Menopause offer women an excellent opportunity to pause (no pun intended) and analyze their health and wellness levels.
Peri Menopause and Menopause topics that need more attention:
Menopause and Peri Menopause are still topics that are discussed with a light hearted smile and almost half jokingly set aside as ‘one of those things life throws at you that will soon pass with minor consequences’, but for many women symptoms are so erratic and overwhelming that they start affecting their quality of life – menopause day is aiming to change that.
• Risks Associated with Menopause – believe it or not, for certain women menopause can be a risky business as it can trigger the onset of other health issues such as heart problems or osteoporosis. We worked out an infographic with everything you need to know about menopause risks (and threw in some andropause risks there as well! Yes, guys get it too).
• How to control Menopause Symptoms – there are ways in which you can avoid or lower the intensity of menopause symptoms and they go from treatment to environmental factors. This article summarizes them for you as well as a couple of suggestions you can follow to lower hot flashes.
• Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy – This treatment helps women stop hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms; unfortunately the public is still largely skeptical of its benefits because of a lack of awareness of the differences between BHRT and HRT. One of them is natural, the other synthetic – read this blog for more information.
• Menopause and Nutrition – What you eat has a lot to do with how you feel, especially during menopause. For example, did you know that bigger women experience stronger hot flashes? Or that a diet high in whole grains, fruits and veggies can help eliminate night sweats? Interesting stuff.
• Menopause and Intimacy – Put two still very taboo subjects together and what do you get? A lot of people not talking about intimacy and menopause. There are plenty of half-truths and myths surrounding this subject; will it be painful? Do I become dry? Will it look different? Those and other answers can be found on this post.
And so let’s raise a glass to Peri Menopause and Menopause and celebrate every woman who is about to or currently experiencing “the change”. Let’s all start a group hug! but wait until the hot flash is over – skinny dipping in a tub full of ice water sounds like a great idea right now. Cheers!
By Adriana Munoz Tayraco at BodyScience Medical
It’s never too late to learn how to have a Better Period (as irregular as they may be!)
Check out our Info on Periods & Puberty page for more helpful information and additional posts on menopause OR stop by our new PeriodTalk forum to get answers to the questions you’ve been wondering about.