There are certain taboo topics that don’t get the airtime they deserve … and menopause is one of them. If you’re a woman, this will affect you at some time. Exactly when and the severity of symptoms will vary amongst us, but I’m witness to this … shit can get real once you will hit this stage of life.
Down the perimenopause rabbit hole
Until I started down this rabbit hole, I had no idea about the enormously wide range of menopause symptoms. To the uninitiated, perimenopause is the time right before you enter menopause. You’re in natural menopause when you have not had a period for 12 consecutive months.
Changes during this time of your life may include physical, mental and emotional shifts which can impact your life in significant ways. Some women are completely debilitated by their symptoms with their careers, self-esteem and relationships suffering in the process. Others soar through with minimum disruption – it varies.
For me, I’ve experienced bouts of joint pain, insomnia, hot flashes, unpredictable heavy periods, sore boobs (I mean really sore boobs), heart palpitations and bloating. And yep, these are all as much fun as they sound.
Any relief in sight ?
There’s no magic bullet here ladies, but there are plenty of things you can do to help yourself during these years. Menopause doesn’t generally necessitate medical treatment, however if you’re concerned talk with your doctor. You may decide to investigate hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or other treatments. Be sure to educate yourself on the benefits and risks.
Below are some simple tips for looking after yourself as you face down menopause.
- Try to get enough sleep, have a routine and try to stick to a regular bedtime
- Exercise regularly and introduce some weight training to your regime
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Bump up your vitamin D and calcium intake
- Do your kegels…they really are your fanny’s friend!
- Don’t smoke, and ensure you have a healthy diet
- Stay hydrated and drink sufficient water
- Practice yoga or meditation … and breathe
Remember this too shall pass chicks … and I for one look forward to seeing you all on the other side!
Tracy is a media professional working in television. An enthusiastic explorer of the inter webs, she's held many different roles and has worked on documentary, reality and lifestyle television shows across almost two decades in the industry. Tracy also writes.