Menopause is a natural part of life for women, especially those in their late forties and early fifties, with 51 being the average age of menopause onset for women in the US. Despite the inevitability of menopause for women, this can still be a confusing and difficult time. In order to best cope with the transitional period of menopause, it's a good idea to have a handle on what symptoms you can expect and plan a line of defense for dealing with them. Here are seven ways to handle menopause symptoms with ease:
Take Charge of Your Sleep Patterns
Many menopausal women report difficulty falling and staying asleep, usually as a result of hot flashes, which are sudden feelings of being overheated and sweaty that seem to come out of nowhere and often occur in the middle of the night.
Keeping your room cooler than usual and sleeping with a fan on, as well as wearing minimal clothing and sticking to lighter bedding, can help minimize the effect of hot flashes on your sleep. In addition, getting exercise and avoiding caffeine during the day can help you to get much better sleep during menopause.
Get Plenty of Exercise
Getting plenty of physical exercise every week won't make menopause go away, but it can make the symptoms more bearable. Exercise is a natural mood-booster, which can help counteract the mood swings and irritability many women experience during menopause. Menopause can also cause weight gain in some women, and upping your weekly exercise is a great way to help prevent that from happening.
Try Hormone Replacement Therapy
If you're worried about menopause symptoms, it's a good idea to talk to your doctor about hormone replacement therapy at a clinic like Genemedics Health Institute. Hormone replacement therapy helps counteract the negative effects of menopause by replacing the hormones your body no longer makes on its own. Hormone replacement therapy comes in a variety of forms, including creams and pills.
Some women find that alternative treatments, particularly acupuncture, can help ease symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes and mood swings. While there has not yet been much scientific evidence on behalf of acupuncture helping menopausal women, it may be worth a try, as acupuncture does not generally require a large time commitment or involve any serious side effects.
Get Plenty of Calcium
Getting plenty of calcium is very important during menopause because menopause often leads to more fragile, less dense bones and an increased risk of osteoporosis. Getting a lot of calcium is the best way to counteract this side effect of menopause. Calcium supplements are an easy fix, but for a more natural solution, try to incorporate as many of these calcium-rich foods into your diet as possible.
Deal with Dryness Issue
Decreased estrogen levels during menopause cause many women to experience vaginal dryness. This can be very uncomfortable, especially during sexual intercourse. Luckily, it is not necessary to live with this side effect, as many lubricating products exist for this problem. If you're not sure which vaginal lubricant is best for you, it's always a good idea to bring this concern up with your doctor.
Seek Counseling if Needed
Sometimes menopause involves emotional side effects as well as physical ones. Transitioning to a new phase in life and knowing you are no longer able to have biological children can be difficult psychologically. In addition, the physical side effects can wreak havoc on your mood.
If you feel overwhelmed by your experience with menopause, it's a good idea to speak to a professional therapist. Other options include writing in a journal and confiding in a friend who has been through the same thing.
By following these tips, you will be able to navigate menopause with less stress and less severe side effects.