The menopause (also known as ‘the change’) effects all women in some way, and is a natural part of getting older. Menopause means the last menstrual period. Periods will stop because of the low levels of oestrogen and progesterone.
Hormone levels can go up and down for several years before eventually becoming so low that periods stop. Consequently, these lower levels of oestrogen can cause you problematic symptoms. These symptoms can vary a lot – especially how long they last, and how mild or severe they are.
Most of all, the impact on your sleep, work and private life can seem overwhelming at times. One of the most common symptoms is hot flushes, these can also happen at night.
There are three types of menopause:
- First, premature menopause. Whether through premature ovarian failure or surgery and cancer treatments, this is menopause that starts before the age of forty.
- And then, perimenopause. This will usually start when you reach early to mid-forties. This is the start of menopause and lasts until post menopause.
- Finally, post menopause. This is when your periods stop and it is defined as more than 12 months without periods (if your ovaries are still intact), or straight away if you have surgery to remove your ovaries. Your monthly cycle stops and your ovaries no longer produce eggs. This is usually between the ages of forty-five and fifty-five, and the average age, in the UK, is fifty-one.
The most common symptoms include:
- Hot flushes, night sweats and chills
- Sleeping problems
- Mood swings, anger, irritability and impatience
- Anxiety and/or depression
- Memory and concentration difficulties
- Reduced interest in sex (libido)
- Vaginal dryness and discomfort during sex
- Itchy or ‘crawling’ feeling
- Joint stiffness and aches
- Sore breasts
- Weight gain
Clinical hypnotherapy can reduce the effects of many menopausal symptoms, it is especially effective with the hot flushes and night sweats. If you would like to talk to me to find out more about getting help, please contact me.