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Managing menopause

There’s no magic pill or super-charged, chakra-releasing yoga position that can stop menopause. But there are many options available to help you manage the symptoms, from healthy living to prescription medicines. Some treatments are supported by scientific research, while others have less evidence to back them up.

Here are seven ways to help you keep your symptoms in check.

1. A healthy lifestyle

It’s active wear time, ladies. Small changes in your lifestyle – like eating a balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight and participating in regular exercise – can have a big impact on your menopause symptoms.

According to research, women who lead a healthy lifestyle may experience fewer and even less severe menopause symptoms.1 Exercise can also help reduce hot flushes – yes, oddly, working up a sweat can in fact reduce the heat. And, weight loss has been shown to reduce hot flushes too.

2. Relaxation and mindfulness

Relaxation exercises may help relieve tension, anxiety and depression, so it’s worth breaking out the yoga mat and practicing your ommms. Studies have also shown that changing negative thoughts and attitudes about menopause into a positive outlook on life may also result in a reduction of menopause symptoms.

3. Natural and complementary therapies

Some women use herbal remedies to treat menopause symptoms. However, there’s not much scientific evidence to support the benefits of many natural or complementary treatments in menopause.

Many natural and complementary therapies are available over the counter in Australia, but chat to your doctor before using them.

4. Psychological therapy

Menopause can pack a punch, especially when it comes to your emotions. Those pesky hormones can cause mood swings, or make you feel anxious or sad. Hot flushes and night sweats can also be downright frustrating and, let’s face it, a tad embarrassing too.

Your mental health is paramount to living a happy and fulfilling life. If you think you need help managing the psychological symptoms of menopause, speak with your doctor. They can refer you to a psychologist to help you deal with your feelings and give you strategies to get you back on track emotions-wise.

5. Menopausal hormone therapy (or MHT)

Many of the symptoms you experience during menopause are the result of changes in the body’s levels of estrogen and progesterone.

Menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) is a type of medicine prescribed by your doctor to replace these reduced levels of oestrogen and progesterone.

MHT can help to reduce symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats and vaginal dryness, and can also help to reduce the risk of bone fractures.

Your doctor can help you decide if MHT is appropriate for you.

6. Estrogen-only therapy

Estrogen-only therapy is a medicine that may be prescribed by your doctor.

Estrogen may be given as a tablet, patch, vaginal cream or pessary (inserted into the vagina). Tablets or patches alone can increase the risk of uterine cancer, so must be taken with progesterone.

Vaginal creams and pessaries may help you manage vaginal dryness.

7. Non-hormonal therapies

Some women – like those who have had breast cancer or are at increased risk of breast cancer – are unable to use hormone-based treatments to manage menopause symptoms. For these women, other non-hormonal medications may be beneficial.

Talk with your doctor to see if it this option is appropriate for you.

©Pfizer 2017. Pfizer Australia Pty Limited. Pfizer Medical Information: 1800 675 229. 38–42 Wharf Road, West Ryde, NSW, 2114. PP-DUA-AUS-0196, 10/2017

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