If you menstruate, you’ll eventually run up against menopause.
This can be a difficult time that can interfere with your daily life and routine.
Because this is a natural part of a life, there is no “cure” for menopause.
However, as we’ll see later in this article, there are some naturopathic solutions for menopause which can ease your transition through this process.
Keep reading to find out more.
What is Menopause?
Change of life, the Big M, or simply The Change: call it what you want, it will happen in anyone who menstruates.
In the US alone, two million people reach menopause every year.
Menopause is the natural biological process during which your reproductive hormones decrease, your ovaries stop producing eggs, and eventually your periods end.
The gradual transition to menopause is called perimenopause.
During this time hormones such as estrogen and progesterone begin to fluctuate and can cause a number of physical symptoms.
A Naturopathic Doctor’s Role During Menopause
By focusing on the whole person, a naturopathic doctor can help to address the factors that impact perimenopause and menopause.
By doing a full naturopathic evaluation, your naturopathic doctor can help to manage difficult symptoms and also take preventive measures to address changes that can impact heart, bone, and brain health.
Read on below to find out some of the ways a naturopathic doctor can help you with
1. Managing Your Physical Symptoms
Menopause can come with a great deal of physical symptoms.
While it is a natural part of life, these symptoms can cause a lot of frustration.
A naturopathic doctor can help you to deal with a number of the issues you may experience during your menopausal journey.
For example, as your hormone levels fluctuate during menopause, you’re likely to experience hot flashes and night sweats.
These can vary in length and frequency, and certain lifestyle factors might make them worse, like your environment, nutrition, stress level, and alcohol and tobacco use.
While hot flashes are common in menopause, it’s important to note they may pop up in other conditions as well.
Another common symptom of menopause is vaginal dryness.
A decreased level of estrogen can cause vaginal tissue to become thinner, drier, and less elastic, which can cause penetration to be painful and can also leave you at risk for urinary tract infections and urinary incontinence.
A full evaluation will help to ensure that these symptoms are not caused by other health issues such as malignancies, vulvar dystrophies and dermatoses, infection, allergies, and skin conditions.
From there, your naturopathic doctor can provide solutions to manage your vaginal dryness naturally.
As menopause progresses, several skin changes can occur as well, such as brown spots, dryness, wrinkling, and easy bruising.
Skin is partially composed of collagen and 30 percent of skin collage is lost during the first five years of menopause.
Your naturopathic doctor will help you retain your skin’s elasticity, so you can continue to look and feel great as you age.
2. Manage Your Mental and Emotional Symptoms
The physical effects of menopause can often lead to mental and emotional symptoms.
If you’re in menopause or perimenopause, you might experience a decreased libido and other changes in sexual responses.
This is due to change in anatomy, hormone levels, physiology, psychological factors, and other stressors during menopausal transitions.
You may also experience depression, anxiety, and mood swings.
These symptoms, as well as increased irritability and panic or anxiety disorder, may be caused by the sleep disruption due to your hot flashes and other factors that aren’t related to hormonal changes.
Whatever it is that’s causing your changes to you mental health state, your naturopathic doctor will work to find the root cause.
From there, you’ll get a treatment plan designed to address that root cause, helping you get back to feeling balanced and back to your regular self.
3. Reduce Your Health Risks
As you make your way through menopause, your risk of certain health disorders increases.
For example, your bones will become weaker as you age, putting you at greater risk for osteoporosis.
So your naturopathic doctor may prescribe vitamin D and calcium and recommend bone strengthening dietary and exercise regimes to help reduce your risk.
As well, you’re at greater risk for a deteriorating memory as you get older.
As a result, your naturopathic doctor may suggest herbs such as the plant extract bacopa monnieri, or mind-body medicine techniques like meditation to help improve memory and prevent cognitive decline.
4. Keep Your Energy Levels Up
Let’s face it – menopause is exhausting.
A common symptom of menopause is insomnia. That’s partially due to the hot flashes you have to deal with, but there’s more to it than that.
A 2015 study in the Journal Of Sleep Disorders And Therapies found a comorbidity between menopause and a number of issues which could affect your sleep quality, including:
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Restless leg syndrome
Your naturopathic doctor can help you find solutions for your sleep difficulties, easing your menopausal journey.
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy: A Potential Solution
Hormones are like chemical messengers that help your body to carry out a variety of major functions.
Hormones do things like tell you when you’re hungry, regulate emotions, and control your immune, digestive, and reproductive system.
When your hormones are out of balance, you can be faced with a variety of different health concerns.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is a treatment in which your hormone levels can be supplemented to help ease your symptoms.
Since menopause is not a health disorder but instead a natural part of your life, BHRT is intended to ease your menopausal symptoms and not to eliminate menopause entirely.
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy can help with symptoms such as mood swings, lost libido, insomnia, chronic fatigue, memory issues, weight gain, hot flashes, and night sweats.
Book An Appointment With Annex Naturopathic
Are you starting to approach a menopausal age, and concerned with how it’s going to affect your life?
Have you already begun down the menopausal path, and having trouble dealing with the symptoms?
Either way, Annex Naturopathic is here for you.
Book an appointment with us today, and speak to one of our naturopathic doctors on how you can get relief from your menopausal symptoms, naturally.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D
Annex Naturopathic Clinic is a clinic in Toronto that offers integrative healthcare solutions from Drs. Marnie Luck, ND, and Tanya Lee, ND