Menopause can be a scary time in a woman’s life—a changing hormonal balance, the transition into middle age, and shifting priorities present a unique set of challenges. With the right guidance and support, though, the process of menopause can be more comfortable both physically and emotionally.
Here you’ll find a brief introduction to menopause, some tips for navigating through it successfully, and some ideas for how to overcome menopause’s challenges.
What Is Menopause?
According to The Healthy Choice Compounding Pharmacy, menopause is when a woman has naturally ceased having menstrual periods for a year and some symptoms include hot flashes, night sweats, and increased anxiety or irritability. The process of menopause is completely natural, signaling a transition from fertility to older age. Many women find the most enjoyable periods of life to be the “golden years” following menopause—however, the process does often involve a number of the uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating physical challenges mentioned above.
How Does It Affect My Body?
The physical and emotional effects of menopause are due to the drastic hormonal changes occurring inside a woman’s body. The primary components of the reproductive system, which catalyze menopause, are estrogen (the “female hormone”), testosterone (the “male” hormone, which also plays a crucial role in women’s health), and progesterone. According to Sunrise Women’s Healthcare, dropping levels of estrogen, which affects primarily sexual health, also impacts bone health, emotional wellness, and many more body functions. Likewise, dropping testosterone levels in women decrease libido.
Overcoming Menopause Symptoms
Menopause is harder for some women than others, but almost all experience some level of negative symptoms. Perimenopause is a period leading up to menopause, which may last years for some women and cause significant effects.
Many lifestyle changes can help women experiencing difficult menopause transitions. Whole foods that are rich in Calcium and Vitamin D help stabilize nutrient levels in the blood and prevent bone loss due to hormonal changes. Dairy products are rich in Calcium, and foods like sardines and other fish provide Vitamin D. Natural sunlight is also an ideal source of Vitamin D. Drinking high amounts of water also helps many women. Exercise is scientifically proven to reduce stress levels, increase “feel-good” hormones like endorphins, and encourage healthy sleep levels—all of which contribute to increased well-being for women going through menopause.
Keep in mind that there are medications available that can treat vasomotor symptoms, or “hot flashes.” Some women who experience the worst menopause symptoms might even opt for hormone replacement therapy. This carries its own risks, however, and should only be attempted under the care of a licensed provider.
Are you starting to feel the effects of menopause? Today, there are many options, both natural and conventional. However, properly planning your strategy to fight menopause can make your life more relaxed and comfortable as you travel through this phase of life.