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Welcome to my blog “Menopause Insomnia How Long Does It Last?”
Menopause is a time of major hormonal, physical and psychological change for a women. Menopausal symptoms vary from women to women, but nearly all Menopausal women suffer from the same symptoms Insomnia caused by Hot flashes & night sweats. There doesn’t seem to be any easy way to reduce these symptoms other than good sleep practices, unless they are prepared to take the medical route with HRT, which is a bit controversial at the moment, more on that later.
Anyway, as many Menopausal women have problems sleeping, I thought I would do a small blog post on the subject. I know a bit about it as I know several women who are going through it, and they have been kind enough to allow me into their “secret world” of Menopause so I can give out some thoughts and advice, mostly to do with the sleep issues rather than the menopause ones!
What is the Menopause?
Menopause is a normal condition that all women go through as they age. The term “Menopause” can describe any number of changes that a women goes through either just before or after she stops menstruating, marking the end of her reproductive period. Usually from 45-50 years of age.
What Causes the Menopause?
A women is born with an number of eggs which are released every month upon puberty. This is called Menstruation. The eggs are stored in the Ovaries, which also control estrogen and progesterone, these control menstruation & ovulation. Menopause happens when the ovaries no longer release an egg every month and menstruation stops.It’s a normal part of aging when it happens after 40. Menopause before 40 is called premature menopause and can happen for a number of reasons, such as-
- Ovary damage
How Many Stages Does The Menopause Have?
It has 3 stages
- Perimenopause– Typically begins some years before menopause, when less estrogen is made by the ovaries. It can last up until menopause. As the menopause approaches, the drop in estrogen quickens, giving off menopausal symptoms.
- Menopause– This is the point when at least a year as elapsed since a women last had her menstrual period. The ovaries have now stopped releasing eggs & making most of their estrogen.
- Postmenopause– The years after the menopause. During these years, the menopause symptoms such a shot flashes should ease. But health risks related to loss of estrogen rise as a results
What are the symptoms of Menopause?
Most women approaching menopause will have “hot flashes” which is a sudden spread of warmth throughout the body, often with blushing or sweating. The severity can range from mild to severe. There are quite a few symptoms as you can see-
- Irregular or skipped periods
- Mood swings
- Racing heart
- Joint & muscle aches & pains
- Changes in sex drive
- Bladder control problems
- Vaginal dryness
- Weight gain
Not all women get all of the symptoms
What is Menopause Insomnia?
Menopause Insomnia is unlike most insomnia occurrences. Insomnia is usually caused by psychological factors or something that prevents sleep such as caffeine & alcohol, whereas Menopause Insomnia is caused by fluctuations and irregularities in the women’s body.
Surveys indicate that women consider Insomnia among the most irritating of menopausal symptoms. Hot flashes, caused by fluctuation in estrogen & progesterone levels, include a surge of adrenaline, which tends to waken sleepers. Most women also experience night sweats, making it difficult to get back to sleep afterwards, especially if they have had to change clothes or bedwear. It can also take sometime for the Adrenaline to recede enough to allow you to settle down again.
Studies have found that Hot flashes & Night sweats strongly correspond with higher rates of Chronic Insomnia, affecting over half of women in perimenopausal or postmenopausal, but only a third of pre-menopausal women
This makes menopausal women at higher risk from depression & anxiety, as these mental health conditions often coexist with Insomnia
What Causes Menopause Insomnia
Menopause Insomnia is caused by fluctuations and irregularities in a women’s body. Experts believe that Menopause Insomnia is caused by the bodies inability to maintain regular body temperature during the menopause. This promotes “Hot flashes” and “Night Sweats” synonymous with Menopause Insomnia
How to sleep better during the Menopause?
Hormone Replacement Therapy, Antidepressants & low does birth control have all been shown to alleviate sleep problems associated with Menopause. But HRT isn’t used as much today because of the alleged associated risks involved with it, such as breast cancer, blood clots and gallbladder disease. If your Menopause Insomnia symptoms are severe, you may still want to consider HRT as maybe a short term solution, but needless to say, consult your health provider or GP for advice with this important subject.
There are some great herbal remedies you may wish to try first and as always, we have some tips and advice on how to improve your sleeps naturally. These may help with mild Menopause Insomnia, but not too sure about Severe cases. You may need medical advice for that condition. These are all tips we talk extensively in our post “9 weird cures for sleep deprivation” but here’s a quick recap-
- Sleep hygiene- Adhere to regular sleep & waking times, make the bedroom cool and dark, avoid electronics etc
- Create bedtime routine- Take a warm bath, make a worry list, practice deep breathing or meditation
- Invest in cool, comfortable mattress & bedding
- Stay active with exercise
- Watch what you eat & drink, see our blog posts “ditch these 9 foods & drink” & “9 foods that help you sleep better” for extensive info and advice. But avoid Alcohol & Coffee!
- Consider Melatonin- Scientists have recent tests that indicate Melatonin can help reduce sleep problems during Menopause.
- Try CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) learn to reconize problematic thoughts and behaviors and replace with healthy sleep promoting ones
Menopause Insomnia How Long Does It Last?
I wanted to tell you all that it will be going away very soon. Unfortunately, the information I am getting is that once started, the symptoms can last 5 -10 years and for a small unlucky few, even longer. But the good news is that many of the symptoms can be managed as already discussed, so hopefully, your suffering can be reduced.
If anyone has any tips or ideas on how to reduce suffering other than my own, please leave a comment in the “comments” section or send us a direct message.
A Special video that can help you below!