Hormones often start to fluctuate as women approach menopause. This period of change is known as perimenopause. A woman is in perimenopause until she has gone an entire year without a period. This time of transition varies for every woman and the symptoms experienced tend to vary as well.
To treat symptoms of perimenopause, women must first understand what to expect and the treatments options available, including natural treatments.
Perimenopause: Common Signs And Symptoms
Most women suspect they're entering perimenopause when periods start to change from their normal patterns and other symptoms of fluctuating hormones begin.
- Hot flashes
- Mood changes
- Loss of sex drive
- Sleep difficulties
- Irregular periods
These are just some of the many symptoms a woman may notice during this time of transition. However, the symptoms and severity vary from woman to woman.
Options To Ease Perimenopause Symptoms
For women seeking treatment for perimenopause symptoms, doctors offer holistic hormone replacement therapy. This treatment uses synthetic hormones and does have a few side effects that some women prefer to avoid.
- Swelling and breast tenderness
- Feeling ill
- Leg cramps
- Vaginal bleeding
While it's up to each woman to decide if these side effects outweigh the symptoms, many women choose to go through holistic hormone replacement therapy.
Holistic Approaches To Hormone Replacement
Women looking for relief of symptoms with fewer or no side effects often turn to holistic approaches for hormone replacement. This may include bioidentical hormone replacement or dietary supplements to help ease bothersome symptoms.
Unlike hormone replacement therapy, bioidentical hormone therapy uses natural instead of synthetic hormones. Natural hormones cause fewer, if any, side effects because they act identical to that of hormones already in the woman's body.
Another approach is to add foods high in phytoestrogens into the diet. Soy and flaxseed are two common foods recommended for perimenopause women because they are rich in phytoestrogens. Other foods are also rich in phytoestrogens.
- Sesame seeds
- Wheat germ
- Mung beans
Black cohosh is another common supplement for hot flashes for women who don't want to take antidepressants and synthetic hormones.
Other ways women can ease symptoms include making a few changes in their lifestyle.
- Drink plenty of water
- Eat foods high in vitamin D and calcium
- Add lots of vegetables and fruits to your diet
- Get regular exercise
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Avoid any trigger foods
Women can also work with a dietician if they want to manage symptoms and the weight gain that often comes with perimenopause and menopause.
It's important for women to remember their bodies are going through a natural transition. This means eventually, your hormones will calm and your body will adjust. Until then, incorporating some of these treatments can help. Reach out to a holistic hormone replacement therapy service, such as Southern Integrative & Environmental Medical, to learn more.