Approximately 50% of the women I treat in my Sydney practice are experiencing symptoms of menopause or peri-menopause.
Natural treatments for menopause work completely differently to prescription drugs because they improve the way your body copes with menopause, rather than just masking the symptoms.
Here is a list of just a few of the benefits that my menopause patients experience:
1. Understanding the changes
Education is a big part of managing menopause in my opinion. I have noticed that women benefit greatly from an understanding of why the hormone changes are happening, how it will affect them and for how long. Many women don't really know what is 'normal' and fear being embarrassed or not coping with the change.
I try to help women with the emotions that they feel around menopause and encourage a positive attitude to the coming years without the hassle of periods! I have often found that when we make adjustments to the way we think and behave, it can make a big difference to how we experience symptoms.
2. Improved mood
Women are up to 3 times more likely to experience anxiety and depression during menopause and peri-menopause than they are at other times of their life, due to declining hormones. Many women are prescribed anti-depressants at this time, however I believe that this is not the best choice.
Working with a naturopath to individualise dietary changes, herbal medicines and taking steps to reduce stressors in your life can work wonders with mood in as little as a week.
Body image can play a role in depression, so it is important for women to exercise, stay active, eat well and look after themselves during menopause. Relationships problems can cause extra strain and affect our mood, so it is a good idea to let your loved ones know what you are going through and how you feel, so that they can decide how to support you.
3. Relief from hot flushes and night sweats
Not every woman will experience hot flushes and night sweats but for those who do, it can be extremely bothersome and is sometimes accompanied by anxiety and/or insomnia.
Herbal medicines can help to manage the frequency and intensity of hot flushes. Herbs such as black cohosh, sage and wild yam have been used historically to bring relief.
A naturopath will know exactly which herbs will be of the greatest benefit to you and how to dose them for maximum effect. Adding foods high in phytoestrogens can also help to manage hot flushes.
Poor sleep is common particularly in peri-menopause and women report waking at odd times during the night and then being unable to get back to sleep for hours. Poor sleep then leads to other issues such as feeling cranky, irritable and having difficulty in concentrating.
A naturopath can get you back into a healthy sleep pattern quickly with herbs, nutritional suggestions and techniques for getting yourself back to sleep. zzzzzz
5. Post menopause health
If you haven't looked after your health before menopause, this transition stage can be an excellent time to take stock of how you are travelling.
After menopause women can be at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, thyroid problems and diabetes.
A naturopath can help you to limit these risks by attending to any present concerns and offering nutrition advice for preventative health. As we age, our bodies change and so should the amount and type of foods that we eat.
A healthy diet, sunshine, exercise and an active social life are a great recipe for healthy ageing.
I love being able to offer solutions to women experiencing a difficult menopause!
If you would like to know more about menopause you can access my fact sheet, sign up for one of my workshops 'natural therapies for menopause' or book a consultation.
I look forward to helping you.