All about menopause
Women in their early, mid and late 40's often report that their lives feel out of control. Many seemingly unrelated health issues can bubble to the surface at this time. It can be hard to know what to deal with first. This change in health might be a sign that you've entered peri-menopause.
No two women seem to experience the transition to menopause the same way. It can be a time where you may feel confused and isolated. For about 30% of women, the transition to menopause is difficult.
What is peri-menopause?
Peri-menopause is a period of about 5 to 7 years before menopause, and often begins at around age 42 to 45, or sometimes younger.
Declining progesterone and fluctuating oestrogen levels can start to play havoc with the menstrual cycle. Women can experience clotting and very heavy bleeding during this time. Periods are often closer together.
Some women discover that their PMS symptoms have worsened and irritability is now having a negative impact on their life and relationships.
The hormonal changes can also make us less able to cope with stress, making it easier to fall prey to anxiety, depression and insomnia.
The fluctuations in oestrogen can affect other aspects of your health and some women find that their allergies worsen in their 40's and reflux or abdominal bloating becomes a problem.
Hot flushes are not usually a feature of early menopause.
You might like to read my blogs about menopause and peri-menopause:
Do you suspect that you have entered peri-menopause?
"10 years ago, at the age of 41, I started having trouble sleeping. Up until this point in my life, I had been running a family and a business and I was fit, healthy and felt very capable. That. All. Changed.
I started to wake up during the night and not be able to get to sleep for hours. I started to feel anxious, "through the roof" anxious and I felt hyper-alert all the time. I started to get heart palpitations day and night. My doctor put me on anti-depressants to help me settle but I didn't like the way they made me feel.
I felt like I was on a merry-go-round of anxiety, lack of sleep and spiralling health problems. My periods started to get very, very heavy and I had to stay close to the bathroom at work. My digestion was the pits and even water gave me reflux. I didn't know what to eat because everything made me feel awful. And I was putting on weight, even though I was eating less.
I tried to hide everything from everyone because I had always been so strong and capable, I didn't like this new feeling that I was losing control.
At night I would turn to google to try to find out what was happening to me. The doctor told me that it was just stress. I ended up getting more confused and worried because I couldn't find any answers or help.
I now know that what I was experiencing was normal for women in their 40's but I felt like I was alone. I felt like the merry-go-round that was my life would occasionally slow down, but not enough to let me off and the slightest thing would make it speed up again".
Common menopause symptoms
Towards the end of peri-menopause, usually in late 40s to early 50s, the typical symptoms of menopause can begin:
~ Long time periods between menstrual cycles
~ Lighter bleeding
~ Hot flushes and night sweating
~ Dry skin, itchy skin and vaginal dryness
~ Weight gain
~ Mood changes and irritability
~ Anxiety or depression
~ Declining libido
Alternatives to HRT
Some women worry that hormone replacement (HRT) might be their only option - but there is an alternative! Herbal medicine and other natural therapies are very effective for lessening many of the symptoms you might experience during menopause.
As well as supporting you with herbal medicine, I can guide you through which foods will benefit you the most, as you go through this transition stage.
If you have not prioritised your own health before menopause, I can teach you how to make dietary and lifestyle changes that will support you through menopause and enhance your feeling of wellbeing!
"I have been feeling great - no hot flushes for months.
I am so pleased with the results.
Thank you so much!"
Lisa A. Drummoyne
Women's Wellness Program
I have developed a Women's Wellness Program to help women who are grappling with a number of health conditions at the same time. This is common during peri-menopause and menopause.
I have found it is beneficial if we see each other several times over 3 to 4 months, to really get to the source of what is causing the problems and make gradual diet and lifestyle changes to help you feel great again.
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