For so long Peri-Menopause/Menopause was seen as just something women had to put up with. Despite up to 90% of UK women experiencing severe menopausal symptoms, only half will seek medical help, mainly due to embarrassment.
What is Menopause?
Menopause is classed as when you have not had a period for 12 months or more. Symptoms can arise years before this and are referred to as the Perimenopause.
Information suggests that symptoms will last around four years, but in reality can last a lot longer. In the UK, the average age for a woman to reach the menopause is 51.
Depression & anxiety can be a huge problem during menopause. Evidence suggests that depression during menopause can present differently in comparison to other depressive disorders.
I first started with menopausal symptoms in my early 40’s, however, I didn’t realise that was the cause. I wasn’t displaying the ‘usual’ symptoms, hot flushes, lighter or irregular periods etc. My periods were still pretty regular. However, I suddenly developed dreadful PMT (or so I thought) and was constantly bloated. As well as that I developed food allergies and intolerances I had never had before and my memory began to fail. It took until my mid-40s to consider that I had ADHD and menopause hormone fluctuations were exacerbating my symptoms.
It wasn’t until the night sweats started a year or so later that I began to wonder if it was menopause. When I first approached my (male) GP, I was promptly told I was too young and it couldn’t be menopause. Four years later I finally had a (female) GP confirm I was perimenopausal and prescribe HRT. It took some trial and error but we finally found the right dose and type. However, I have also introduced vitamins and supplements to my diet. As well as that, I am trying to be very sensible in what I eat. Because of my journey, I’m passionate about raising awareness and letting women know they don’t have to suffer their menopausal symptoms in silence.