THANK YOU BBC and all that sail in her. It has been an informative week for all of us that love menopause chat and as most of you know, it is honestly is one of my favourite topics. There were a few symptoms I hadn’t heard of before, electric shocks as being one symptom that really did shock me! I mean, who knew that? I am very sensitive to electricity and wonder now if that has been heightened with menopause. Having said all that, I was slightly disappointed about the complete negativity of it and the fact that it kept being referred to as a medical condition. Early menopause or premature menopause may be a medical condition brought on by other situations but regular menopause is as natural as the day we are born, it is as nature intended. The fertility hormones come in during adolescence and leave during peri-menopause. With the changing of the hormones, we get symptoms which we need to be curious about and make changes so that they don’t hinder us. We are all bio-individual and that means that ‘our menopause’ is very likely to be different from others.
The big problem is that GP’s don’t study about this inevitable change that women have and so when women come in with one of the 37 different symptoms or all of them, they don’t know how to prescribe. They serve up the anti-depressents or migraine tablets when perhaps hrt may be more relevant..
There is no point in sticking a plaster over the symptoms or ignoring them this will bring suffering. The one thing I want to shout about is that menopause is not a phase, there is no going back to who you were. This is a change and you have to change with it. if your libido is falling, perhaps you need testosterone and also perhaps worth noting, you may just need to spice things up, nothing less sexy that doing the same thing, in the same way for years on end.
I heard the BBC talk quite a lot about exercise but I didn’t once hear them talk about alcohol, which in my view is the major exaggerator of many of the symptoms. Alcohol doesn’t necessarily agree with us as we go through the ten years of peri-menopause and beyond into menopause. So when ladies talk about hot flushes, anxiety, disturbed sleep, night sweats, brain fog, memory loss my first thought would be to look at the type and amount of alcohol they drink. White wine and Champagne seem to bring on more hot sweats than spirits for example. Vodka is loaded with Gluten, so that could be another underlying issue.
The other big problem is that we are living a long time, many of us will reach 100 years; Therefore we are spending 50% of our life without these hormones and that is causing problems. All the experts now say that HRT is a wonderful thing, it got bad press when statistics were read in a certainway, but now I understand there is some sort of HRT for everyone. There are specialist clinics and there is so much content online about this, there is no need to feel isolated anymore. In my opinion the menopause specialists on Instagram like @menopause_doc and @lizearlewellbeing are almost certainly much better informed than your local GP.
The other disappointment about the BBC is they didn’t tell many of the great transformations that Menopause can bring. With the fertility hormones leaving us and with them some of our maternal instincts, there is this wonderful opportunity, as nature intended, for us to say, Okay, what about me? what do I want now, who am I now, where am I going and how am I going to get there. Many women have gone on to achieve great things in their 50’s and beyond and I choose to believe that this is due to their hormones changing things up.
Menopause is not some unsexy secret, it has just had a bad rep. We need to make sure that our daughters and grand-daughters don’t feel any shame attached to reaching this milestone. It is the time in our life when we can be who ever we want to be, achieve what we want to achieve and go forth and conquer and that is exactly what I intend to do. Having a mid-life transformation is definitely that way we need to rebrand menopause.