Dealing with Menopause, Naturally



Menopause Support: How to Get What You Need

The key is to look for resources that put the emphasis on individual needs and concerns during menopause.

By Katherine Lee

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Working with your doctor to find relief for such symptoms as hot flashes is only one part of successfully navigating menopause. Often, talking with friends, family, and other women — especially those who've gone through menopause themselves — can provide invaluable emotional and social support and help you to feel less alone through what can sometimes be a bumpy transition.

"Menopause, like pregnancy, is a normal life event for women, but that doesn't mean you don't need support and information during this time," says Holly Thacker, MD, director of the Women's Health Center at Cleveland Clinic and author ofWomen's Health: Your Body, Your Hormones, Your Choices. And while menopause can vary from woman to woman — some have few or no symptoms and feel great about not having periods anymore while others may experience significant hot flashes or depression — experts agree that most women can benefit from talking about their experiences with others.

So how can you get the support that you need? Here are some guidelines to help you as you shore up your resources:

Stick with health care pros for medical information.While friends and family can be great to turn to when talking about your feelings, going to them to get medical facts about menopause may not always be a good idea. For one thing, they may inadvertently share misinformation or try to convince you that whatever worked for them will also work for you. Menopause is a very personal and individual experience, like contraception, pregnancy, or a method of delivering a baby. Discussing your options with a qualified health care provider is a better bet, and it can also help you avoid the potential minefield of inaccurate, often one-sided advice — "Every woman should take hormones" or "No one should consider hormone therapy" — that may be lobbed your way by well-intentioned loved ones.

Trust your instincts.If you feel that your problems are not being addressed by your doctor or that you aren't getting the assistance you need, whether it be from a family member, a friend, or a support group, find someone else to talk to. If your approach to handling menopause symptoms is being criticized by a friend, for instance, then that person may not be a good source of support. Similarly, if a support group you're considering joining only endorses a single way as the right way, you should consider that a red flag.

Look into doctor-led menopause support groups.Connecting with other menopausal women to share stories and experiences can be helpful — much as connecting with other parents-to-be in childbirth classes can help reduce anxiety and make you feel more in control about labor and delivery. It's important, however, to keep in mind that what worked for another woman may not work for you. Try to find groups that are led by health care professionals, says Dr. Thacker. Ask your doctor if he or she conducts support groups with patients, or look for an organization such as Red Hot Mamas, which establishes support groups in hospitals throughout the country.

Find reputable, unbiased sources.Whether it's a popular book or an alternative practitioner, beware of anyone or anything that is marketing products to consumers for their own financial benefit, says Thacker. Instead, try to find menopause experts who are affiliated with reputable hospitals, studies, or organizations such as the . That way you have a better chance that the information you are getting is accurate and bias-free.






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Date: 01.12.2018, 08:32 / Views: 51254