More than hot flushes
Officially the menopause is the moment when your ovaries stop producing eggs and you’ve not had a menstrual cycle for 12 months. Perimenopause is the time leading up to this point during which your levels of the sex hormones oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone fluctuate greatly, before settling at a lower level after menopause.
There are over 30 different menopausal symptoms – hot flushes are just the tip of the iceberg. Why so many? Because your body uses oestrogen in almost all its functions. From the maintenance of your bones to the balance of your brain chemistry and the health of your skin.
More than just about your ovaries
Our bodies are run by a number of extraordinary hormones. The sex hormones produced by your ovaries are just one part of the puzzle. During the menopause, our other key hormones can also become imbalanced disturbing how efficiently we use and store energy, our mood, sleep, sex drive and more. These imbalances can impact our underlying health as well as the type and severity of our menopause symptoms.
In short, the menopause is complex and highly individualised. So, for a menopause plan to make a difference, it needs to be tailored to you.
Dynamic and evolving
Throughout midlife, our hormones and health fluctuate which impacts our menopause experience. A change in life circumstances can cause changes too – for example, a new job, a bereavement or divorce.
It’s important to therefore keep listening to your body and to track your symptoms. That way, you’re best placed to adapt the support you’re giving your body as circumstances change.
It’s a cliché, but the menopause experience is a journey not a one-off event.