Helpful Menopause Products for Coping
It's been confirmed. You have seen the specialist and all of those symptoms are in fact signs that you are going through menopause. And the awful thing is that no-one can tell you how long you will have to endure it.
This is not like pregnancy — 40 weeks give or take and you know that the delivery of your bouncing bundle of joy will see an end to pregnancy-related cankles, restless nights trying to get your bump in a comfortable position only to discover that you now need the bathroom, and blood pressure related puffiness and bloating. To be fair, after delivery you find yourself with a whole new set of problems, but pregnancy ones are generally short-lived.
No, menopause can go on for years and years. You are probably familiar with the best known symptoms of menopause — hot flashes, dry skin and dryness during sex, menopause voice change, acne, hot flashes.
Yes I know I've noted the sudden rushes of heat twice, but since this was the one symptom I found hardest to bear I think it merits being mentioned more than once!
And this leads me on to the question I am sure many of you are asking. What menopause products are available for menopausal women that work? That actually help ease some of the symptoms of menopause?
Useful Menopause Products
If you type the word "menopause" into your favorite online stores you will not be surprised to discover that the vast majority of items for sale are vitamin and mineral supplements.
However, if you scroll down you might discover some unusual products including magnets and face masks for sale too.
If I’m honest, when my perimenopause symptoms were at their peak all I really wanted was a hammock on a quiet beach with a cooling breeze. I reckon that would have solved my hot flashes, stress, dark moods and sleep issues.
Unfortunately, my family was not as keen as I was on the idea of me bunking off to a desert island for the duration of the perimenopause, so I had to be more creative and find things which fit in with daily life.
Well HRT is the biggy of course. It works for millions of women and even if you are undecided on the matter I would say it's well worth visiting your doctor and asking about the many different types.
I was always adamant I would not use HRT, but when I became menopausal I was shocked at how difficult some of the symptoms were to bear. I gave myself a stern talking to about making the most of the benefits of modern medicine and went for a chat with my doctor.
I confessed my concerns about increased incidence of certain cancers, DVT, blood clots and strokes in women using HRT I decided that the increased benefits to my bone density, a lower risk of bowel cancer and mostly, relief of my symptoms, was worth the slightly increased risk.
You may, like me, have heard that HRT causes weight gain, but it's apparently a myth that HRT causes this. It's age and changes in lifestyle which are to blame. Another myth — women who have had a hysterectomy don't need it. This is not necessarily true — again ask your doctor for advice.
I have heard women say it doesn't work for them, but there are over 50 types and there is a good chance one will suit you. You just have to be persistent, firm with your healthcare provider and try different combinations and delivery systems until you find one right for you.
Along with HRT I found my most useful purchase for those doggone hot flashes was a menopause scarf. A menopause scarf is a tube of fabric available in a variety of pretty patterns filled with cooling gel beads, which you activate with water. The scarf is so cooling on the neck I had to pry it from my eight-year-old daughter, who loved it in hot weather, and had to beg for it back from a menopausal friend who borrowed it for an overseas trip to a very hot country.
You can buy them from many well known outlets on the internet — just type "menopause scarf" into your search engine of choice. The scarves generally cost less than a bottle of wine.
Menopause Products for Sleeping Better
If you are suffering with restlessness at night I can offer you a cheap tip from a friend, who simply swapped her double duvet for two singles. She had been retreating to the spare room every night, because she was tossing and turning and dragging the duvet around, disturbing her partner. Purchasing a single duvet for each of them restored marital harmony and meant they could still share a bed.
The same idea works if you live in a colder climate and love your electric blanket. We ditched our one-temperature-suits-all version for a slightly more expensive one that has separate controls for left and right. Now I can lie happily on my cool side of the bed while my other half heats up his chilly toes!
You can apparently buy special menopause nightwear, but I think save your money and just choose natural fabrics — no nylon nighties!
Now, as ever, it's important to brush your teeth before bed, and treating yourself to a good toothbrush is a must, along with a good dentist to go with it! Teeth often suffer as your hormones fluctuate and your dropping estrogen levels can lead to an increased risk of gum disease, tooth loss, and bone problems caused by osteoporosis.
Obviously you can start with supplements. Soy, evening primrose oil, vitamin E, omega-3, black cohosh, milk thistle — they all boast benefits for menopausal women.
There’s a huge market for supplements that claim to offer relief from troubling symptoms. Unfortunately, only trial and error will help you find which, if any of these, will help you.
It’s wise to check with your physician before trying alternative remedies as some can interact negatively with any medication you might be taking.
The idea of magnets as menopause products intrigues me. Most magnets on sale for menopause are worn in your underwear, just below your navel. No, really.
One well-known brand of lady magnets claims that wearing a magnet in your underwear can help re-balance the autonomic nervous system (ANS) in over 70 percent of users.
Apparently the ANS is responsible for controlling bodily functions, including stress reactions such as sweating, body temperature, circulation, heart rate, bowel and bladder function, and more. Balancing it, in theory, helps cut down on menopause symptoms involving these functions.
Strong magnets can also be worn in clip form on the ear for therapy purposes. The idea is that the tiny button-style magnetic ear clips stimulate acupressure points.
They have a front and back piece and you place them on the ear to correspond with the point you want to stimulate.
Magnetic bracelets are often sold for menopause symptom relief, too. In China, they’ve have been using magnets in therapy for centuries.
Many people believe that wearing a magnetic bracelet will stimulate the blood flow through the entire body, revitalizing and invigorating the wearer, strengthening and speeding up the body’s natural healing powers.
Dedicated users believe wearing a magnetic bracelet offers a number of health benefits, helping anything from back pain, vertigo and cholesterol levels to cramps and insomnia.
All forms of strong magnet therapy are relatively cheap and non-invasive and the ear magnets in particular can come in some very attractive designs, simply looking like a pretty ear stud.
However, you should not use these types of powerful magnet products if you wear a pacemaker, hearing aids in the ear or implanted, or if there is any chance you could be pregnant.
Facemasks and Bedtime Routines
So back to the face-mask I mentioned earlier. How can wearing one help with menopause symptoms?
Basically the idea is they should be used as part of a sleep improvement plan, which may also include increasing exercise during the daytime and implementing a routine at bedtime. This routine may involve cutting down on screen time, caffeine and alcohol and fatty or spicy foods late at night.
A successful sleep improvement routine might include a relaxing bath with lavender scented bubbles or salts (lavender is known for its relaxing properties).
The facemask would be part of bed attire, which would also include nightclothes and bedding made from natural fabrics to cut down on perspiration.
Books and Online Resources
Learning about any medical condition is useful — knowledge is power and luckily there are lots of online resources like NewLifeOutlook where you can not only educate yourself, but also chat with women going through a similar experience.
Books can also be useful and you can buy books on anything menopause related from self-help, bios, guides to medical and alternative therapies and cookery and special diet books. Again, check with your doctor before starting any new non-prescribed meds or drastically changing your diet, especially if you have other health issues.
Lastly my top tip for surviving menopause would be to keep your sense of humor and there are a number of products to help you do that. Treat yourself to some Netflix or a book from your favorite comedian for when you are feeling stressed or you can feel your mood dipping.
Or you could hunt down menopause related novelty items like fridge magnets and coasters making jokes about the more common symptoms of menopause.
I even found a Snow White joke mug for sale online. It listed the seven dwarves of menopause, which included Itchy, Sweaty, Sleepy, Bloated and Forgetful. It made me chuckle as I recognized some of those characters in myself!
Laughter is the best medicine they say, and if menopause products like that make you smile and help to ward off the menopause blues, then it’s worth a couple of dollars don’t you think?