You might be wondering what a young woman in her twenties is doing blogging about the perimenopause and menopause. I’ll tell you that this is something I didn’t think I’d be talking about either, at least not until my forties.
I was inspired by a recent podcast I listened to between fitness phenomenon James Smith and Dr Louise Newson, a specialist in this area where she runs her own clinic.
I am not going through it currently, but there will be a time when I will. I want to understand and be prepared for when that happens, as well as get an idea of what other women may be going through now and how we can adjust our mindsets to help and tackle the stigma around talking about the menopause.
I like learning, especially about women’s health – I am a woman!
After reading Dr Newson’s book, Preparing for the Perimenopause and Menopause, this is something I for sure want to talk about by sharing what I have learned and how we can help. It is very interesting and breaks taboos and common misconceptions.
Let’s address the four main stages of menopause:
- Pre-menopause – the time in your life before any menopausal symptoms occur
- Perimenopause – when you experience menopausal symptoms due to hormone changes but still have your periods, which are changing in nature or frequency
- Menopause – when you do not have a period for 12 consecutive months
- Post-menopause – the time in your life after you have not had a period for 12 consecutive months
Firstly – hot flushes. The most common, if not only symptom spoken about regarding the menopause.
Whilst this isn’t completely false, it isn’t that true. It goes beyond just uncomfortable hot flushes and into more dangerous territory for some women, where they can experience mood swings, vaginal dryness and even suicidal thoughts. Some women can feel disheartened, miserable, and fatigued amongst many other symptoms.
Women go through a lot, right?!
I found it astounding that some doctors don’t even realise their patients are going through the menopause until many appointments later, and by then they are in great discomfort. Dr Newson addresses how she prescribes HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) to her patients who then reveal how their lives are transformed for the better within a few weeks. They feel so much better, rejuvenated and motivated in life. HRT has a bad rap where there is a lot of misinformation spread, yet the science is there to show it is safe to use.
Whilst the latter half of the book did not really interest me (i.e. exercises I already knew, and eating well), I tried to read through the main points including the importance of sleep and exercise, not just through the menopause but when ageing.
I liked the anecdotes from her past patients throughout the book, addressing the physical and mental impact going through the perimenopause and menopause has had on them.
A quick read and good book packed with facts and helpful points on how to deal with the menopause.
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