The Seven Dwarves of Menopause: Itchy, Bitchy, Sweaty, Sleepy, Bloated, Forgetful and Psycho
The other day I stumbled upon a reference to a book entitled Menopause and the Mind by Dr. Claire Warga. I have not read the book and am not recommending it here but the following paragraph caught my eye:
“I’m losing it.” women say. “I’m going out of my mind,” “I’m falling apart at the seams.” “I’m flipping out.” “I’m cracking up.” “I’m having a nervous breakdown,” “I’m just not myself.” “I don’t know what’s wrong with me.” I do the strangest things.” “I think I’m getting early Alzheimer’s.”
I have had many women walk into my clinic making similar statements. “I cry all the time.” “I’ve become an angry person and do not know how my husband puts up with me.” “I feel as if my head is filled with cotton; I’m forgetful, absentminded and suddenly can’t spell simple words.” “I find myself blanking out when I’m speaking, forgetting peoples names, transposing words and losing my train of thought – what’s wrong with me?” “Some days I just want to kill someone!”
If you are in your mid-to-late-thirties to mid-fifties some of these complaints might sound familiar. Perimenopause, defined as a transitional period surrounding menopause that can include irregular periods, hot flashes, insomnia, depression, mood swings, mental confusion, recurrent uti’s, vaginal dryness and other menopausal symptoms and lasting on average between 2 and 8 years, and menopause, defined as not having menses for 12 consecutive months, can lead woman to question their sanity. If you want a natural approach to handling these symptoms then you should consider Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Traditional Chinese Medicine has been treating and resolving women’s menopausal concerns for centuries. When you sit down with an acupuncturist and discuss your condition, be prepared to answer many questions about your specific situation. Irritability vs. crying-all-the-time, feeling warm vs. cold-hands-and-feet, dry, itchy skin, panic attacks, headaches, ...these are some of the unique symptoms that help your acupuncturist uniquely tailor a treatment to you.
Usually, within 3-4 treatments and often after the first treatment, women notice profound changes in their symptoms. Acupuncture treatments typically last one hour and involve the insertion of fine needles into points on the skin that help to balance energy, or ‘qi’.
When I treat women suffering from menopausal symptoms I often offer them Chinese herbs in addition to the acupuncture. Chinese herbal formulas contain a number of herbs that are work together to address particular set of symptoms. There are many formulas that specifically treat menopausal symptoms but it is important to utilize the one that pertains to the diagnosis that applies to your unique situation.
Avoid feeling like any of the Seven Dwarves of Menopause! Try acupuncture and begin to feel normal again!