Friday, February 20, 2009

Menopause And A Few Myths About It

Menopause, it must be borne in mind, is not a disease, it is just "the next stage in your life". Here are some of the common myths:

Myth: It is believed that when you reach menopause that your ovaries dry up and waste away.

This is not true, what actually happens is that the ovaries gradually reduce the production of the hormone estrogen. This happens because the body does not require the high production of the hormone anymore.

Myth: Women lose libido at menopause.

Research has shown that there is no link between disinterest in sex and the low level of estrogen during menopause. Fifty percent of women are found to have no marked changed in libido during menopause.

Myth: Menopause causes depression.

Not true. Studies have shown that there are a greater percentage of depressed women in the thirty age group rather than in the menopausal age group, which is in the fifties.

Myth: The loss of estrogen during menopause does not have any serious consequences.

The loss of estrogen can bring about major risks in a woman's life. For example, she runs the risk of heart disease, osteoporosis, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, colon cancer, just to name a few.

Myth: There is weight gain during menopause.

Some women actually lose weight, while some will gain weight, but it is not necessarily related to menopause. What will make you fat is probably not eating healthy food. Therefore, you should have a well balanced diet.

Myth: All women have symptoms.

It is generally thought that all women who reach menopause have the symptoms of mood swings, depression, hot flashes etc. Studies have shown that about fifteen percent of women do not have symptoms of menopause. The only symptom would be the stoppage of menstruation.

Myth: In hormone replacement therapy, the hormone estrogen is a natural hormone.

This is not true. All the hormonal drugs used in hormone replacement therapy are manufactured and are synthetic.

Myth: Menopause occurs at the age of 50.

There is no specific age for menopause. There is great variation. The average age is about 52. About one percent of women reach menopause at about 40 years or even younger. The average age span for menopause today is around 45 years of age to 55 years. However, if you have had your female reproductive organs surgically removed then you would automatically have reached menopause.

Myth: Menopause lasts only a few years.

Menopause can last from anywhere from six to fourteen years.

Myth: Menopause is very commonly mistaken for a disease.

It most definitely is not a disease; it is just another normal phase in a woman's life.

Myth: There is memory loss during menopause.

There may be occasional mood swings but there is no memory loss. Memory loss may be attributed to the aging factor and is not directly related to menopause. As men and women age, the brain reduces in size.

Myth: After menopause, women cannot enjoy sex.

It has been found that the majority of post menopausal women enjoy sex more than before menopause. This may be due to the fact that they do not have to worry about unwanted pregnancies.

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Menopause

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Why You Should Not Wait For Symptoms of Menopause Before Identifying Remedies?

Have you ever thought that every woman who lives up to middle age has got Menopause waiting for them between mile stone 45 and 51, and that you are one of them?

Have you also ever thought about your knowledge of menopause? May be you do not bother with such vital issue in your life, even though you hear of menopause from time to time. Why does it never excite your curiosity to know about this natural phenomenon that will eventually creep in on you, announced by some discomforting symptoms?

All I hear mostly about menopause is how uncomfortable it is for women in pre or menopause proper. But that is because such women were just like you are now. They did not prepare for the eventuality of menopause. They did not understand what and how menopause symptoms manifest, neither did they find out what difference it will make for them if they changed their life styles to such that will aid their bodies to better manage both nutritional and hormonal shortfalls that trigger menopause.

Of course you may not know that though menopause is not a disease, its symptoms are serious health problems effecting millions of women worldwide at every given time, though simple natural therapies: herbs, exercise regimens and nutritional supplements required to augment their diet and balance their hormones are available

Do you also know that at middle age the body?s ability to metabolize and absorb nutrients from the food you eat become lowered, denying your body essential vitamins and minerals? And that at this point in time your calcium recommended daily allowance becomes unattainable even if you have the means for balanced diet? This is when suddenly your ovary begins to show signs of retiring as your estrogen level drops drastically, announced by discomforting symptoms. Calcium is an important mineral that helps in production and balancing of hormones.

You may have heard of hot flashes, night sweats, irritability, anxiety, persistent headaches, shrinking of the vagina walls and dryness, and general disorientation that makes you wonder what was happening to you... Irregular menstruation is common at the unset of menopause. Your appetite can be greatly impaired - either make you gluttonous or averse to food. You can also begin to gain weight or lose weight drastically. All these awful health problems are symptoms of pre menopause and menopause proper.

However, do not despair now. If your age is above 40 you should begin to acquaint yourself with the symptoms of menopause and available remedies. There are very useful ebooks that teach simple remedies. These menopause manuals have seen countless number of women through their menopause transition in better states than without them. You can get them online, read them and prepare yourself to confront menopause when its symptoms show up. That is common sense, isn?t it?

I want you to also note that menopause does not last through out the remainder of your life; not at all, it clears up and ushers you into a graceful life of ripe old age so blissful because of good health derived from the health care regimen you used to combat menopause. Even sexual reception at this period is restored to a peak you have never known.

That will not be the case for those who neither prepared nor knew what to do to get relief from the symptoms of menopause. They will always look haggard and sickly after all the pummeling they received from those awful symptoms of menopause.

You do not want to be one of them, do you? Sure you don?t want to suffer unduly, so take action today, get to know menopause and arm yourself. Forewarned is forearmed.

Neshah writes for your sound health - get your Menopause Manual from

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Perimenopause,The World's Greatest Rollercoaster

Having lived through perimenopause and made it through alive I feel as though I have experienced the world?s greatest roller coaster ride.

Quite a feat for someone who won?t even get on a traditional rollercoaster due to the overwhelming sense of panic and the unfounded belief that I won?t make it off alive.

Unfortunately, we as women do not have a choice in perimenopause. It is a life transition we will go through whether we want to or not. Just like beginning menstruation, it is hardwired into our genetics and we all find different ways to process how it affects our life.

As young women we do get some preparation that menstruation is imminent. Today in school young women are prepared for the change that is coming in their lives. They are educated about the signs are leading up to it such as bodily changes, emotional changes and what they may expect when the onset begins. The age range is quite narrower for the start of menstruation than for the transition into perimenopause.

The signs of perimenopause can begin 10 to 15 years before menopause actually occurs. What that means is that the rollercoaster ride of symptoms can begin as early as your late thirties or you can transition in and out throughout your forties and fifties. When dealing this large a range, what is really happening in a women?s life is often overlooked or misdiagnosed. It often goes unsuspected by the women themselves. Even Oprah was thrown off guard.

Many women have suffered in silence quietly harboring the fear that something is seriously wrong with them. This is because the symptoms of perimenopause are wide spread and at times vague. We also do not have any official preparation for what is coming.

The easily recognizable signs are hot flashes, night sweats, sleep irregularities and irregular periods. These are often the first signs that cause a woman to recognize that something is changing. Weight gain or the subtle changing of a women?s body is often another recognizable sign. The shift appears to occur even if our diet and exercise regime remain as they always have been.

There are many, somewhat vague symptoms that also occur during this transition. Heart palpitations, changes in skin and hair and brain fog or a feeling of not being able to think clearly are reported by many women. Anxiety and feelings or overwhelm are also reported. There comes that day after we catch our self forgetting the most basic information that we wonder if we are indeed losing our mind.

An increase in the number and severity of headaches is also another complaint that will send a woman to her doctor. What often happens is the headache is treated but the underlying hormonal shifts are missed. The fix is temporary and many women still feel uneasy and not comfortable in their own bodies.

On top of that perimenopause is state of extreme flux as our hormones are shifting. The symptoms come and go along with our periods. Still we find today that women are often not diagnosed with what is truly happening but sent home with antidepressants instead. The disappointment and frustration occurs when the hoped for relief never materializes.

All in all for a number of years it can feel as though we are on a wild rollercoaster ride and we are not sure of the outcome.

If you feel that you have joined thousands of other women on this wild ride but are feeling out of the loop start today by getting support. There are many online groups for women going through perimenopause as well as ones who have made it through and are willing to share the benefit of their experience. It is a safe place to put words to your symptoms and see if they are being experienced by other women.

Research the topic online as well as offline. You will find a multitude of information that will allow you to assess if you are truly beginning ?the change?. Advocate for yourself with your doctor. If you are being treated with antidepressants and not feeling relief then insist that your hormone levels be checked. It is at least a first step and will give you a baseline reading to use as a starting point.

And most importantly, know that you are not on this rollercoaster ride alone.

Maureen Staiano is a Life Coach specializing in working with women and the unique challenges, opportunities and transitions we face in our lives. Please visit me: and also visit my blog

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Menopause Natural Solutions

As women age, they go have to go through menopause. The most common discomfort during this stage is the sensation of heat that attacks a person without warning. This is known as hot flashes. There are many who try to find natural remedies to address this issue.

A woman I know who supervised a group in the psychology field was undergoing menopause. She would have to stop what she was doing for a moment and she said that she felt her skin was on fire.

This sensation didn?t go as fast as it came but gradually lessened. She felt it affected her work so she decided to find a natural way to relieve the discomfort so she could concentrate on her work. Here are some of the solutions she came up with.

She wanted some preventative steps to keep the hot flashes to a minimum. Since she was a behavioral specialist she decided to figure out what happens before the experience as part of her research.

She found out that stress was an important factor. As a person who had to deal with a lot of stress, the behavioral specialist had to come up with ways to deal with it. One of her methods was to plan daily activities.

She organized her schedule so that all the stress filled tasks were in the morning while it was cool and she gave herself a lot of time to get ready for appointments. The specialist would keep ice nearby at all times and sometimes she could be found with her head in the freezer which she found to be one of her best methods to fight hot flashes.

Another of her favorite remedies was to pay attention to how she dressed. She would layer her clothing, wear items with an open neck, and stick to cotton as things like synthetics and wool don?t breathe.

Changing your habits a little may help you as well. Things like avoiding spicy food, cutting down on coffee and giving up cigarettes may relieve menopause symptoms. These remedies will work and they don?t cost any money to start.

Sarah Thomas provides articles on You can find more of her work at the site

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

What Is The Link Between Hysterectomy And Menopause?

Hysterectomy and menopause continues to create confusion among many women who are not sure whether the latter will be induced by having a hysterectomy. In explaining what can occur let's look at the link between the two.

Firstly, what is a hysterectomy? In simple terms, it's the removal of a women's uterus and cervix or part of a women's uterus. Some procedures may also involve removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes.

The Effects Of Hysterectomy

So how does a hysterectomy affect menopause? Women can no longer menstruate or become pregnant following a hysterectomy but it seems there is confusion surrounding the issue of whether this means that menopause has occurred. Simply explained, if one or both of the ovaries are retained then menopausal onset could continue as normal. In fact, one of three things could happen: the ovaries will continue to function normally until menopause occurs; the ovaries could stop functioning as soon as one year following surgery or ovarian failure could be silent.

What Is Surgical Menopause?

Complete removal of the ovaries in pre-menopausal women will result in a drop in oestrogen and progesterone levels which can bring on what is described as surgical menopause. A sudden drop in ovarian production can lead to menopause symptoms occuring just a few days following the procedure. The increased risk of osteoporosis is one of the downsides to this as well as the usual symptoms of menopause including hot flushes and night sweats.

Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is an option for women who experience surgical menopause. This can help alleviate some of the symptoms such as hot flushes. Information on the benefits of HRT are sketchy to say the least with the treatment having both it's detractors and supporters. Whether it's the right course of action for you can only be made following a consultation with your health physician. The good news for women who elect to skip HRT is that there are alternative and more natural treatments available and this should be one of the first questions you ask your doctor.

Women who have one or both of their ovaries left behind following a hysterectomy will generally experience ovarian production until menopause is reached. The difference is that hormone levels can fluctuate alarmingly or, they can stop producing a lot sooner than expected. If it's the latter and oestrogen deficiency is recognized, then a visit to the doctor is of the utmost importance.

More Issues To Consider

There are other issues regarding whether the ovaries should be left behind. The threat of ovarian cancer always lingers and many doctors will advise their patients to consider removing them. The risk however, is low and in many cases if the ovaries are relatively healthy then many patients will elect to retain either one or both.

Hysterectomy and menopause seems like a very complex issue on the surface and in reality it is because there are many factors to consider. Hysterectomy is one of the most performed surgical procedures in the western world for women and for most, it's a decision made after lengthy analysation. You'll need to weigh up the pros and cons with your doctor before making any decision.

Dean Caporella is a professional broadcaster. Is there a link between hysterectomy and menopause? Get the latest menopause related news and reviews at:

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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Menopause - Don't Fear It - Beat It

Night sweats, hot flashes, mood swings, brain fog, weight gain, itchy skin, no sex drive and feeling just plain this menopause? This rural Missouri woman took this "bull by the horns" and took control!

Menopause is the condition caused by the slowing and eventual shut down of the reproductive system in conjunction with the decline of other hormones in the endocrine system. Forty years ago, menopause was the "change of life"; that period of time when a woman was considered middle aged. With modern technology we live longer and the old definition of middle age no longer holds true. Menopause however, still strikes women as early as 40 and sometimes earlier. Common causes for early menopause are genetics, physical traumas and extended use of certain medicines.

When surgery and prolonged use of steroids threw her into full blown menopause (she didn't pass GO - she didn't collect $200), this 45 year old did what most red blooded American women would do; saw her doctor who prescribed hormone replacement therapy (HRT). A year later and still feeling like she was having an out of body experience, the only medical alternative offered by her physician was to increase the dosage of HRT. Since finding that one of the drugs was made from pregnant mare urine, this wasn't an option and she started researching menopause, its cause and effects.

After two years of research and being her own guinea pig, she developed a system of natural health and fitness that works. Her program encompasses nutrition, natural supplements and a very do-able exercise routine. She calls her program Together We Can Do It and says it's unique - developed for Real Women by a Real Woman. Her 7-DVD exercise routine follows she and a friend from Day 1 to Day 30. They start out from being barely able to bend over to being more fit and flexible. She also includes her booklet detailing her research and findings, a handy exercise wall chart, a 30-day calendar to keep you motivated and a Before & After Chart to outline your progress. This spunky grandmother questioned the medical system which so quickly and readily prescribes harmful chemicals and took her health in her own hands. Today she's not only healthy and happy but 22 pounds lighter thanks to her program.

Debbie Lombardino has authored a booklet detailing her two year research of menopause - its cause and effects. She used her findings to develop a very unique fitness program directed at pere-menopausal and menopausal women ages 35-65. Ms. Lombardino continues to help women attain health through fitness by lecturing and spreading the word about responsible, natural health.

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Monday, February 2, 2009

Menopause Insomnia

When a menopausal woman consults a physician, the most frequently heard complaint is insomnia. The ageing process reduces the quality and duration of sleep. In a menopausal woman, the reduction of hormones and its imbalance makes it worse. The biological and psychological changes that occur with menopause create stress, anxiety and depression that are all prime causes of insomnia.

Hot flashes and sweats are common problems with menopausal woman due to hormonal imbalance. When these symptoms happen at night, particularly in the early hours of the morning, it may result in chronic insomnia. A woman wakes up from sleep with hot flashes and is sweating. She finds it extremely difficult to go back to sleep again until she feels normal. Having vivid dreams and getting up with a pounding heart are also part of the problem. Sometimes, even if a woman does not wake up, she switches from a deep restorative stage to one of shallow depth. It is estimated that menopausal related insomnia affects 15 to 17 percent of all women.

Before blaming hormones, it is necessary to have a complete medical workup to detect other underlying causes of insomnia. These include physical and mental health disorders and life style related causes.

The only menopausal specific treatment for sleep problems is hormone replacement therapy. Different studies give conflicting conclusions. It is safe to say that the jury is still out. It may be that women react differently to hormone therapy and a short trial may determine whether it is right for an individual.

Sleep time habits that are useful are keeping the bedroom cool, warm baths, relaxation techniques like yoga and meditation, soft music, using the bed only for sleeping and getting into bed only when sleepy. Mild aerobic exercise early in the evening and consuming foods rich in tryptophan like milk, banana, fig, dates and tuna helps. Avoiding stimulants like caffeine, alcohol and nicotine and foods rich in tyramine like bacon, cheese, and sausage. A glass of wine can also help.

When the hormone level reaches a balance after sometime, though at a lower level, the problem should sort itself out if it is the menopause that caused it.

Cause Of Insomnia provides detailed information on insomnia, cause of insomnia, chronic insomnia, effects of insomnia and more. Cause Of Insomnia is affiliated with Female Impotence.

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