Going through menopause can be an incredibly difficult challenge, so it’s essential to observe some menopause self care tips. From the hot flashes to the loss of skin elasticity, and even the anxiety that comes along with everything, it can feel like your whole life is changing involuntarily. It may leave you wondering what your body will be like when it’s over.
The good news is that it’s manageable. Women everywhere have dealt with menopause and continued having an active and productive life despite the symptoms. You can be one of those women!
With a little effort and a lot of self-love, you’ll get through menopause like a pro if you take care of yourself. Here are ten menopause self care tips you should never ignore.
1. Be prepared for hot flashes.
A hot flash is the most recognized symptom of menopause. They can be brutal. The constant sweating, overheating, and pink/reddish skin can be embarrassing and can send your anxiety through the roof.
According to Harvard Health, about 75 percent of women in menopause experience hot flashes. If you’re lucky, you’ll be in the remaining 25 percent. However, if you’re in the majority, the good news is that there are some things you can do to minimize the effects of the flashes.
The first thing you can do is learn what triggers them. Common triggers include hot drinks, warm outdoor temperatures, medications, and stress. Once you identify your triggers (they aren’t the same for everyone), you can try to avoid them. At the very least, you’ll know the hot flash is coming.
You can attempt to keep your environment cool. Examples are lowering the temperature on your AC, putting cool sheets on your bed, and wearing thin, breathable layers of clothing. Finally, if you do have a hot flash, don’t panic.
2. Get regular checkups.
Performing menopause self care tips doesn’t mean to do everything yourself. Regular checkups with your doctor can ensure that your body is functioning correctly. After all, your body is going through a lot of changes during menopause.
The changes that happen in your body, particularly a lowered level of estrogen, can put you at risk for specific medical conditions. These can include stroke, heart disease, and osteoporosis. Getting regular checkups will allow your doctor to identify these conditions early if they happen so that you can fix them.
Even after menopause, you should continue to get regular checkups. You’ll find that your medical needs are different during this stage of your life. Your health is more important than ever at that point, so don’t leave anything to chance.
3. Take care of your mental health.
Menopause is stressful. The constant changes in your mood, temperature, weight, and other bodily functions can drive your anxiety through the roof. On top of that, you may be dealing with embarrassment from the flashes.
You are not alone in your feelings. It’s important to remember that what’s happening to you is regular and that you can talk to someone about it. You may not need a professional counselor but confide in a loved one or a close friend.
You should also do things that help to reduce your stress level. Yoga is an excellent activity for reducing stress. Meditation is another one. Whatever relieves stress for you, make that a regular part of your life.
4. Don’t be embarrassed to admit when you’re not feeling your best.
Women are tough, resilient humans. It’s not uncommon to find “superwomen” all over the place. Many women pride themselves on being able to juggle everything that life throws at them.
Because of this, it can be difficult for a woman to admit when she isn’t feeling her best. During menopause, this can happen often. You simply may not be feeling as energized or motivated, and accepting this might be hard for you.
However, one of the biggest menopause self care tips you can follow is to listen to your body. If you’re not feeling up to tackling all the tasks of the day, give yourself a break. It doesn’t make you any less of a person or any less of a woman.
Women can be incredibly hard on themselves when they aren’t feeling like being intimate with their partner. However, you must talk with your partner about these feelings. Otherwise, they won’t know (unless they are a woman who is also going through menopause). Don’t be afraid to admit when you need a “me day.”
5. Take care of your sexual health/sex life.
Vaginal health can take a big hit during menopause. The vagina gets drier than usual, and the vaginal walls get thinner. There may even be a loss of skin elasticity in the vagina. This can result in painful sex plus vaginal health problems.
For a lot of women, the stress of having an ill-functioning vagina makes them feel like their sex life is on the line. However, that’s not what you should be focusing on. If your partner loves you, they will understand that you may have to put a hold on sex and intimacy until you get your vaginal health under control.
This doesn’t mean that your sex life has to take a back seat. There are lubricants and medicines that can help. You need to visit your gynecologist (#2, regular checkups!) and discuss the problems you’re having.
6. Get enough sleep.
Insomnia is a common problem for women during perimenopause and can continue all the way through menopause. While the exact cause for insomnia issues is unknown, medical experts speculate that a hot flash can interrupt deep sleep cycles. Even if you sleep through the hot flash, the quality of your sleep is being affected.
This can mean that you find yourself being more tired throughout the day. It could also lead to irritability and health problems. Get more sleep is a simple menopause self care tip, but not always an easy tip without some help. You may need to see your doctor if you can’t figure out how to sleep on your own.
7. Be aware of your mood changes.
Unfortunately, your menopause symptoms don’t only affect you. Since menopause affects your hormones, it also affects your emotions. This can manifest in the form of bizarre mood changes, which means that everyone around you must deal with it too.
Managing your mood changes is one menopause self care tip that can help everyone in your household. While you probably can’t stop the mood changes, you can at least be aware of them. Being mindful, along with a lot of understanding from your loved ones, will help you get through it in one piece.
8. Take care of your skin.
Menopause can wreak havoc on your skin. If you’ve never had a solid skincare regimen, now is the time to get one. If you don’t, you might become unrecognizable.
Menopause can cause your skin to get dry and thin. You can develop age spots and larger patches of dark skin. You may begin growing facial hair while the hair on your head thins out. There is even a possibility of skin growths and skin cancer.
This all sounds extreme, but you can significantly reduce skin problems by implementing a great skincare regimen. Don’t take this menopause self care tip with a grain of salt. Start taking care of your skin as early as possible.
9. Eat healthily and exercise.
Weight gain is another side effect of menopause. Even if you’ve always been at a healthy weight all your life, you can expect to put on a few pounds during menopause. Many women gain extra weight around their midsection.
There are several factors that cause weight gain. Genetics, lack of sleep, and hormonal changes can all play a role. However, eating right and exercising is a way to combat this. Living a healthy lifestyle can help you fight those extra calories and, in the process, combat many weight-related diseases that you can get as you get older.
10. Exercise your brain.
Unfortunately, the efficiency of your brain can take a hit during menopause. Many women suffer from memory problems and concentration issues. You could even go as far as calling these problems brain fog.
Some of this brain fog is due to other problems you may be having from menopause. Sleep problems, mental health problems, and even frequent mood changes can all play a part. If you manage these, you can reduce or even prevent brain fog.
The best thing you can do is to incorporate brain-stimulating activities in your life. Challenge yourself and do things that make you use your mind. Anything that makes you think and remember things is welcomed.
Menopause is a challenging time for any woman, and taking care of yourself during this time is essential. As your body goes through these inevitable changes, comfort becomes your primary concern. Don’t be afraid to be a little selfish as you deal with the effects of menopause.
The good news is that the phase won’t last forever. Eventually, your body will become your friend again, and you can get back to a healthy, everyday life. How healthy it is will depend on how good you are a menopause self care, so make sure you put yourself first and take care of all those menopause needs.