Who's afraid of the perimenopause?

Cheeringly, it seems that the perimenopause has at last been on the agenda in the media.

So what’s it all about?

‘Peri’ means ‘around’, so ‘perimenopause’ refers to the time of transition during which a woman’s cycle slows down, or jigs about a bit, or speeds up (or in a lot of cases all of the above) before ceasing altogether, ie reaching menopause. This phase usually begins between the ages of 40 and 50 and continues for an average of 4 years.

It’s a perfectly normal process; there’s nothing ‘wrong’ and therefore nothing technically to fix. But while some women hardly notice anything amiss other than irregularity and eventual cessation of periods, others can be greatly affected by their symptoms.

Everyone has heard of hot flushes, but the symptoms of perimenopause are many and varied, and you may not even recognise them as anything to do with changes in your hormones. Have a look at this list and see how many are or were new to you:

  • hot flushes

  • night sweats

  • changes in cycle length, heaviness and/or length of period

  • disturbed sleep

  • fatigue

  • aching joints and muscles

  • weight gain

  • changes in digestion

  • anxiety

  • hair loss/thinning hair

  • increased facial hair

  • loss of libido

  • irritability

  • crawling or itching skin

  • lack of concentration

It’s quite a list, isn’t it? And when you are experiencing several (or all) of those symptoms at once, life can get very uncomfortable indeed.

So what can be done?

Acupuncture treatment is a gentle way to tackle many of the difficult symptoms of the perimenopause, particularly hot flushes. Treatment involves a small number of needles and provides a space in which to relax and let go of stress. In addition, treatment will include advice on diet and exercise to help ensure that you’re as healthy as possible when you enter the next stage of life.

For more information or to book an appointment, contact me on kyla@kp-acupuncture.co.uk or 07920 107666.

And remember, this isn’t just the end of something, it’s a beginning too.

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