Myth-busting the Menopause
There’s plenty of misinformation out there about ‘the change’. But remember, it’s not a disease; so don’t approach it like one!
Menopause is a phase of life, just like puberty, and it doesn’t need to be all doom and gloom. We separate the facts from the fiction…
Your period will just suddenly stop one day
The truth: Menopause is not a sudden event. This happens to a few of us, but it’s not the norm. Your cycles will likely sputter before they stop. The menopausal transition, which can easily last anything from 3 to 5 years, is all about the ovary fluctuating – sometimes it’s overworking, sometimes it’s underworking – so it makes your periods irregular. When your ovary function fluctuates, so do your hormone levels, and that can cause periods which are too close together, too far apart, too heavy or too light. The average woman has her last period at age 51.
You just have to grin and bear hot flushes
The truth: Considered to be one of the most common symptoms, hot flushes and night sweats are usually the first things mentioned when you start talking about the menopause. But not everyone will experience this – some women sail through the menopause while others are completely debilitated.
However, relief isn’t as elusive as you might think. Start with simple strategies, like dressing in layers and keeping cold water nearby. Even cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can help. In a recent UK study, this form of therapy made women with hot flashes and night sweats feel better about their ability to cope.
The symptoms are all physical
The truth: A lot of the symptoms are – such as hot flushes, vaginal dryness and headaches. But women can also experience mood changes, depression and anxiety, or even ‘brain fog.’
Some women just can’t think straight. You struggle to find the right word and that can be part of the menopause transition. It could be down to you not sleeping properly and being tired.
Menopause will kill your sex drive
The truth: Some women do experience a dip in libido, but in other cases, it’s not desire that’s the issue. As your estrogen levels drop, you may experience vaginal dryness, which makes having sex uncomfortable. Plus, the tissue in your nether regions can thin out and lose elasticity. Use a lubricant to make sex more comfortable. If that’s not doing the trick, your doctor can prescribe vaginal estrogen in the form of a ring, tablet, or cream.
Weight gain is inevitable
The truth: While many women tend to gain weight after menopause you can, in fact, control it. It does take a bit of effort though!
You need to eat about 200 calories less per day to maintain weight after menopause or you’ll see a gradual 1-2 pound weight gain per year. And you have to make exercise a priority – weight gain increases the risk of heart disease, which is the number one killer of women in the US.
If you want to learn how to tame your hormones, improve your diet and health, get healthy eating tips from our cookery demo and much more, then register for our health masterclass – The Menopause Makeover. Book tickets below…
Book now to get the early bird price of €25 (for the first fifty participants) for this four hour health masterclass.