Most women hold a myth that menopause doesn’t affect them until they experience a menstrual cessation, but reality is completely different. Prior to entering the menopause phase, women experience a perimenopause period that is both hormonally and emotionally tumultuous. The perimenopause phase could start in the mid-thirties and a majority of women are certainly experiencing the symptoms by the time they reach forty. While the time could be turbulent, it is also a period of personal awakening where a woman finds mental and emotional enlightenment. Hence, menopause is a journey that introduces you to your best and most authentic self and perimenopause prepares you for that exciting phase of your life.
In medical terms, menopause is defined as a twelve-month interval where a woman experiences a gap in the menstruating. The average age of menopause in Western world is fifty one, while in India it is forty-six. There are several advantages of menopause such as no periods and no birth controls, but disadvantages are more. Hence, understanding the symptoms empowers the women to take the right steps in overcoming them.
The perimenopause phase shares most of the symptoms of menopause and so early identification could save the women from innumerable mental, physical, and emotional traumas. This phase could last from one to eight years without affecting the fertility of the sufferer. Hence, a timely intervention can help the ladies and provide insight to the family to deal with the situation.
Symptoms of Perimenopause
Decreased attention span/ bouts of brain fog
Decreased memory/ fuzzy thinking
Erratic menstrual cycle
Increased cholesterol/ Weight gain
Increased blood pressure
Urinary incontinence/ frequency
Dry, flaky skin/ thin skin/ wrinkles
Heart palpitations/ shortness of breath
Although there is no direct cure to deal with menopause or perimenopause, different therapies and treatments can target individual symptoms and help the sufferer to live a better quality of life.
- HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy): HRT gives relief to many of the hormone related symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats, moodiness, vaginal dryness, reduced sex drive, and depression. Here hormones of lower level are replaced. Some HRTs come with associated risk of breast cancer, so a GP could best guide you in this respect.
- Diet Plan: A change in diet plan goes a long way in keeping healthy body and mind. This type of diet plan eliminates tobacco and alcohol, reduces oil and sugar, and lays a greater stress on fresh fruits and vegetables. Women should consume more of calcium rich food like Kefir, Broccoli, Almonds, Okra, Cheese, Yogurt, and Nay Beans.
- Lubrication: Some women with GSM (Genital Symptoms of Menopause) could use topical oils like coconut oil to add lubrication to the woman part to bring significant relief.
- Couple toys: Women could use couple toys to bring pleasure to themselves. There are many modern toys that bring enhanced pleasure even with a weakening libido.
- Exercises: You can treat the urinary leaks by using Kegel exercise or floor strengthening devices. Weight bearing exercises also help to protect your bones. Some bone-strengthening exercises are Yoga, Tai Chi, and Walking.
- Estrogen usage. The use of Estrogen in the initial three to five years of menopause could trap bone loss by 30 percent. It is also useful to cure hot flashes and heart palpitation.
- Insomnia Treatment: Insomnia can be treated through sleep aids, supplements and medications. Hormone therapy also helps in calming the nerves and improving sleep pattern.
- Maintenance of body awareness: Women should maintain awareness about their bodies to help the physician to navigate the particular hormone imbalance.
- Undergo a regular health check-up: The perimenopause and menopause phase brings along a host of associated diseases like thyroid, blood sugar and blood pressure. Hence, regular health check-ups provide a timely intervention and aid you in dealing with these medical issues.
Hence, it can be seen that while perimenopause could be highly stressful with hosts of physical, mental, and emotional problems, there are an abundance of help available. The various therapies and interventions could drastically increase the quality of your life and help you understand and enjoy this passing phase of life.