Menopause Symptoms: Your Body’s Way of Telling You to Increase Self Care
Many women look to the onset of menopause with dread, having heard horror stories from other women about all the different symptoms that can plague them during this major life transition. But it doesn’t have to be this way—the more you support your body and your hormonal health through this transition, the less symptoms you’re likely to experience. For many women, menopause can even be an extremely rewarding process—a liberating time of growth as you prepare for the next stage of your life.
During perimenopause, ovarian production of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels start to decline as the body starts to transition away from monthly menstrual cycles. While the average age for onset of menopause is around 51 years old, perimenopause symptoms can begin to appear as early as the late 30s to early 40s. The symptoms that appear around this time can be your body’s way of telling you that you need to practice better self-care when it comes to your health. If these symptoms are addressed with treatments that target the root cause, menopause can be a time to make a transition into better health through a better relationship with yourself and your body.
Symptoms of Menopause
Symptoms of menopause and perimenopause can vary among women, although hot flashes, mood swings, and night sweats are among the most notorious. Experts have identified well over 30 different symptoms, and when you add in the diseases that have been linked to the hormonal shifts that happen during this time, the list is even longer. Besides those mentioned above, symptoms of perimenopause and menopause can include:
- Low libido
- Weight gain
- Vaginal dryness
- Chronic fatigue
- Depression and anxiety
- Hair loss
- Insomnia and sleep disorders
- Brain fog and memory issues
- Breast pain
- Digestive issues
- Joint pain
- Urinary incontinence
These symptoms can be exacerbated by stress, poor nutrition, lack of exercise, and environmental toxins. The good news is that many of these symptoms can be managed with lifestyle choices that focus on self-care—a good idea for any woman at any age. Especially when these symptoms creep up early, they should be considered ‘warning signs’ in the body to start evaluating overall health and take preventive action. However, even if a woman is in her late 40s and expecting menopause within a few years, it is never too early to start actively preparing to make the transition a positive one rather than the nightmare it can be.
To Reduce Symptoms, Increase Self Care
Research has shown that living a healthy lifestyle long before menstruation stops can greatly help a woman transition more comfortably, by reducing symptom onset and severity. Top tips include staying active, getting plenty of sleep, practicing stress management techniques, maintaining a healthy weight, eliminating processed foods as much as possible, and eating fresh, whole foods rich in lean proteins, non-starchy vegetables, and healthy fats.
If symptoms start to crop up, working with an expert who can help you evaluate the root cause of your symptoms can help you incorporate targeted changes into your life that will help alleviate symptoms and make the transition an easier one. Many women find relief through bioidentical hormone therapy, especially when combined with taking steps to live a healthier life.
The physicians of the BodyLogicMD network have a thorough understanding of the hormone deficiencies and imbalances behind many perimenopause and menopause symptoms, as well as the steps you can take to improve your health and find relief. Whether you are wanting to prepare for a smooth transition into menopause or are already dealing with symptoms, contact a BodyLogicMD physician today to get help restoring hormone balance and to get support in your self-care efforts—so you can stop worrying about your symptoms and start enjoying the transition into what many women enjoy as the best years of their lives.