Who Should See A Doctor For Help With Menopausal Management
Any woman who is going through menopause may want to see a doctor to discuss menopause and menopausal management strategies. Women who are suffering from severe symptoms, of course, can benefit from making an appointment. Women who dont have any serious symptoms now, however, can also benefit by talking with a doctor. A doctor can explain what to expect and how to cope with the symptoms that set in before they develop.
How To Find The Best Menopause Specialist Near You
Unfortunately, given that menopause affects women and people in gender transition, its been largely ignored by mainstream medicine. That’s why we recommend you work with a menopause specialist. So doctors receive little to no training specific to the issues of menopause and post-menopause health. This is improving, but the effects of better training are only beginning to be felt and may not have trickled out to your area yet.
In fact, a Gennev menopause-certified gynecologist can give you a trusted opinion, determine if medication is right for you, and they can provide prescription support. Book an appointment with a doctor here.
What Kinds Of Symptoms Should I Be Concerned About
The most common symptoms of menopause are hot flashes, night sweats, loss of libido, vaginal dryness, irregular periods, and mood swings. However, there are many others, including weight gain, anxiety, dizziness, and fatigue.
If you have the following, troubling indications, it is worth talking to your doctor:
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What Menopausal Management Techniques Do Doctors Recommend
Doctors have a few different menopause management strategies that can help patients. Lifestyle changes can sometimes help minimize certain symptoms. For example, eating healthy, exercising regularly, and following a sleep schedule can reduce weight gain and improve sleep. Doctors may also prescribe medication or recommend hormone replacement therapy. Hormone replacement therapy supplements the bodys diminishing hormones with additional, identical hormones.
Perimenopause: Symptoms Relief & How To Find A Perimenopause Doctor
Feeling sluggish? Reduced sex drive? Irregular or missed periods? Its not your busy lifestyle taking a toll on you — it may be perimenopause. Before women experience the Big Change, they often report feeling a million little changes related to the gradualas they taper off before menopause.
At Moreland OB-GYN, we focus on building strong relationships with our patients. If youre struggling with occasional signs and symptoms commonly associated with women as they approach menopause, here is an overview and some helpful tips for you to consider.
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Other Menopause Symptoms And Treatments
For most women, hot flashes and trouble sleeping are the biggest problems associated with menopause. But, some women have other symptoms, such as irritability and mood swings, anxiety and depression, headaches, and even heart palpitations. Many of these problems, like mood swings and depression, are often improved by getting a better night’s sleep. Discussing mood issues with your doctor can help you identify the cause, screen for severe depression, and choose the most appropriate intervention. For depression, your doctor may prescribe an antidepressant medication.
If you want to change your lifestyle to see if you can reduce your symptoms, or if you decide any of your symptoms are severe enough to need treatment, talk with your doctor.
Menopause: What To Expect And When To Seek Help
When you come to the end of your childbearing years, your body reacts to menopause with a few expected and sometimes uncomfortable symptoms.
Fortunately, there are ways to manage the side effects of menopause, and your physician can help you navigate this phase of your life. While each person will experience a unique set of symptoms during menopause, there are some common changes you can expect during this time of transition.
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Important Questions To Ask About Menopause Hormone Medicines
- Are hormones right for me? Why?
- What are the benefits?
- What are the serious risks and common side effects?
- How long should I use hormone therapy?
- What is the lowest dose that will work for me?
- Are there any non-hormone medicines that I can take?
Want more information about menopause? Check the FDA website at: www.fda.gov/menopause
The drug and risk information in this booklet may change. Check for the latest facts on each product listed in this booklet.
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Perimenopause
The most common signal of perimenopause is a change in your overall menstrual cycle. Some women report longer-than-normal cycles, while others report that their cycles have become shorter. During this time, you may even begin to skip periods and your menstrual flow may become lighter or heavier.
However, you may want to talk to a perimenopause doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Your periods are very heavy or they include blood clots
- Your periods last much longer than usual
- You experience spotting either between periods or after sex
- Your periods happen closer together
Other common signs and symptoms associated with perimenopause include:
Interested in learning more about Preventive Health Care? You’re not alone!
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Complementary And Alternative Therapies
Complementary and alternative treatments, such as herbal remedies and bioidentical hormones, are not recommended for symptoms of the menopause. This is because it’s generally unclear how safe and effective they are.
Bioidentical hormones are not the same as body identical hormones. Body identical hormones, or micronised progesterone, can be prescribed to treat menopausal symptoms.
Some complementary and alternative therapies can also interact with other medicines and cause side effects.
Ask your GP or pharmacist for advice if you’re thinking about using a complementary therapy.
Page last reviewed: 29 August 2018 Next review due: 29 August 2021
Questions For Your Ob/gyn Or Physician:
Finally, listen to your gut. When dealing with such personal, sensitive issues, you want a doctor you feel comfortable with. You may need to be very open about your sex life, your intimate areas, and things weve been culturally conditioned to be embarrassed about . Docs, and particularly OB/GYNs, are ready to talk frankly you need to be too.
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Things Every Hormone Doctor Wants You To Know
Ah, hormones. Such an easy scapegoat. And for good reason: They can be responsible for everything from mysterious weight gain to hair loss to crazy hunger. When things get a little out of control in that department, an endocrinologist might be able to help you.
But before you make an appointment, read on to find out what they think you should know.Simply put, “we’re hormone doctors,” says Marilyn Tan, MD, an endocrinologist at Stanford Health Care. “The three most common diagnoses we make are thyroid problems, diabetes, and osteoporosis,” she says. Other common conditions they treat: menopause, hypertension, and infertility. And while endocrinology might be a specialty in itself, these docs sub-specialize. Some may focus on weight loss, others on thyroid abnormalities, some on diabetes or reproductive health. That means you should see the one that fits your health issue to get the most targeted treatment.
…or by touching you.
They want to hear about your hot flashes.
JAMA Internal Medicine
And they think a lot about your bones.
What Are My Treatment Options
There are various treatments for menopause symptoms available.
Lifestyle changes that include a diet rich in phytoestrogens, regular exercise, and healthy habits, such as proper hydration and quitting smoking, can make a world of difference.
Hormone-regulating supplements, such as Macafem, also help treat the underlying cause of menopause symptoms in general, hormonal imbalance. For those looking for immediate relief, you may look to pharmaceutical options, such as hormone replacement therapy , which can involve serious side effects.
In order to , speaking to your doctor, who will take your medical history and personal situation into account, might help you reach your decision.
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What Is A Menopause Specialist
While the designation menopause specialist isnt recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties, there are ways to tell if your doctor has a good understanding of menopause care. We encourage anyone needing medical help with menopause symptoms to interview doctors anyone can call themselves a menopause doctor specialist be sure yours really is one.
NAMS, or the North American Menopause Society, is the largest non-profit organization devoted specifically to the health of women in midlife and beyond. Their membership is made up of experts in the field, in medicine, nursing, sociology, psychology, nutrition, epidemiology, and so on.
NAMS offers a training and certification that is generally considered to be excellent and reliable, so if your doctor is an NCMP , you can rest assured they have had quality training. If your doctor is not an NCMP, that doesnt mean they arent qualified to deal with menopause issues you may just want to conduct a bit of your own research.
Talk To Your Doctor About Menopause: Most Women Dont
More often than not, women see their primary care doctor for an annual checkup but dont discuss menopause symptoms like night sweats or vaginal dryness because it could be an awkward conversation, or you might assume the symptoms will just go away. For some women, menopause symptoms will eventually end. However, talking to your doctor about your concerns is important, Moreno said, because your doctor may recommend treatments that can help you find relief in the meantime. Or, they may suggest testing to confirm you arent dealing with a more serious concern.
If youre uncomfortable talking with your doctor about these personal symptoms or you arent satisfied with your doctors answers to your questions about menopause, consider seeking out a menopause specialist. These ob-gyn providers bring an additional level of expertise to your care. The North American Menopause Society certifies menopause practitioners who have undergone advanced training, and Duke employs three of just 25 gynecologists in North Carolina with this menopause certification.
During your visit, our menopause specialists may ask questions to better understand how your menopause symptoms are affecting your quality of life. They will determine whether you may benefit from additional testing or treatment.
With this in mind, heres a rundown of menopause symptoms that should be discussed with your doctor and how a certified menopause practitioner can help.
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How Your Gynecologist Can Help Manage Challenging Menopausal Symptoms
Oh the joys of going through menopause! You know, the night sweats, hot flashes, weight gain, and moodiness. Of course we are kidding, because every woman who has experienced menopause knows its no fun. Some women have it easier than others, but regardless of the severity of your symptoms, learn how your gynecologist can help manage challenging menopausal symptoms.
First Off What Kind Of Doctor Treats Menopause
A gynecologist may be considered the best doctor for menopause. However, he or she can work in conjunction with your primary healthcare physician to diagnose symptoms and get you back on track to a symptom-free life.
Also, when choosing your menopause doctor, know what to look for in a doctor to treat your menopause symptoms. Keep in mind that even though most menopause symptoms are attributed to menopause, your doctor may still refer you to a specialist to help him relieve your discomforts or rule out other underlying causes.
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Is There Any Way To Relieve Menopause Symptoms
Many women know the causes and symptoms of menopause however, what are the ways to relieve their symptoms. In order to relieve symptoms of menopause, an individual will have to endure several lifestyle changes. Women For Women Obstetrics and Gynecology offer several options to treat menopause. For instance, hormone replacement therapy for menopause. This is a treatment in which it relieves common symptoms to address long-term biological changes like bone loss. This process involves the use of progestin, a synthetic hormone.
If you choose not to take synthetic hormones and would prefer a natural approach, here are some natural remedies that can relieve menopausal symptoms.
Eat foods high in calcium, and vitamin D Studies show that foods rich in calcium and vitamin D are linked to good bone health. In postmenopausal women that have an adequate intake of vitamin D, there is a lower chance of hip fractures due to weak bones. You can find vitamin D and calcium-rich foods in all kinds of green, leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens, and spinach. Additionally, they can also be found in tofu, beans, sardines, fish, eggs, cereal, fruit juices, or milk alternatives. Although our main source of vitamin D is from the sun, as you age, your skin gets less efficient at making it. If you choose to cover up or avoid sunlight, consider either taking a supplement or increase your intake of food high in calcium and vitamin D.
When To Seek Treatment
Though menopausal symptoms are quite normal, that doesnt mean you shouldnt consult a physician to help manage your symptoms and determine which treatments can mitigate discomfort. As well as getting a physical when you start to notice you may be premenopausal, here are some other indicators that you should visit your doctor:
Extreme symptoms: If you are experiencing any of the common symptoms of menopause to such an extent that it interferes with your daily life, its time to go to the doctors. While mood changes and other physiological changes might be expected, if you find youre unable to go to work or feel regularly unwell, its always a good idea to seek help from a medical professional.
Unexpected symptoms: Some women have a more difficult time throughout menopause than others. If, in addition to traditional side effects, you notice a lot of weight gain, dizziness, or increased anxiety, seeking treatment from a doctor is important.
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Dong Quai: Empress Of The Herbs
Dong quai has been used in Chinese medicine as treatment for women’s health for thousands of years. But research in recent times hasn’t found evidence to back this up. One study of dong quai to determine its effects on hot flashes during menopause found no benefits. Because dong quai may have some risks, including cancer when taken long-term, check with a doctor before using it.
Find A Menopause Specialist
A great way is using the Find a Menopause Practitioner feature on the NAMS website. All the doctors listed are NAMS members, and those certified by NAMS are designated as such.
Another tool? Each other. If youre looking for a great doc, ask your friends if you have one, share!
So, dont wait until menopause symptoms make your life difficult. If youre a woman, its never too soon or too late to get informed.
If youre premenopausal, a doctor or menopause-trained health coach can help you understand how to take care of yourself now to feel great and avoid problems in the future. If youre in perimenopause or if youre post-menopausal, get the help you need to relieve symptoms and protect your bones, brain, heart, soul, and body for the many years of vibrant life yet to come.
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Alternative Treatments For Menopause
As an alternative treatment for menopause symptoms of the vagina, your doctor may prescribe a vaginalÃ cream to help stop the thinning of vaginal tissues and improve lubrication.There are estrogen-based creams and a non-estrogen cream called Intrarosa that reduces the severity of pain with intercourse as a result of thinning vaginal tissues.
Your diet can also help you get through menopause:
- Eat foods high in plant estrogens — such as soy beans and soy milk. Some research suggests soy may ease symptoms such as hot flashes. Other research shows it may raise the risk of cancer in women who have a uterus. Nuts and seeds, fennel, celery, parsley, and flaxseed oil may also help.
- Raise your calcium intake — to 1,000 to 1,500 mg a day — and do regular weight-bearing exercise to avoid osteoporosis and maintain general good health.
- An extract of black cohosh is thought to reduce symptoms without causing the problems associated with estrogen. However, this herbal supplement mayÃ cause side effects including stomach upset, cramping, and headaches. There is also some concern that black cohosh may be associated with liver damage.
It is important to understand that there is little scientific evidence regarding the effectiveness of these alternative treatments.
Treating Menopausal Symptoms: What You Need To Know
In the 1970s, my friends and I learned everything we needed to know about menstruation from each other and from a popular Judy Blume book, Are You There God? Its Me, Margaret. We even had a club, and we met after school to share stories about breasts, boys, periods and Kotex. We would no more have asked our mothers for such information than we would have asked a boy to dance.
In those days, it was simply not done.
Now that I am menopausal, at the far end of reproductive health, I find my friends and myself completely unprepared for the changes of menopause, for what these hormonal changes mean or how to deal with the worst of the symptoms, from hot flashes to painful sex. Our mothers didnt tell us much about that, either. The extent of my knowledge about menopause was based on what I knew about hormone therapy , which I thought had been roundly dismissed as dangerous and potentially deadly.
In fact, those early results from the National Institutes of Healths Womens Health Initiative particularly a study that led to a huge drop in hormone prescriptions for menopause have been revised. And while exercise and herbal therapies help some women, for many of those who face debilitating symptoms, hormone therapy now looks like the best option.
Once a woman has experienced 12 months without a period, she is classified as being in menopause and for the remainder of her life is described as post-menopausal.
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