Peri and Post Menopause + Pelvic Floor PT!Jun 26, 2023
Many people are unaware of what to expect as they age and that there are things that can be done in your teens, 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and beyond to help prepare your future self for peri and post menopause.
Perimenopause = a period of time of about 5 to 10 years before menopause and usually starts in your 40's
Menopause = the day you've not had a period for 12 consecutive months (with no other obvious causes)
Postmenopause = life after menopause
Menopause results in changing levels of hormones, most notably estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. It is a normal, natural life event that all women experience if they live long enough.
Induced menopause is when a woman's menstrual periods end due to a medical intervention, particularly surgical removal of both ovaries or cancer treatments such as chemotherapy or pelvic radiation.
Smoking and genetics are two factors that can influence the timing of natural menopause. Smokers reach menopause about 2 years earlier than non-smokers.
There are LOTS of symptoms of perimenopause. Some of the most common include hot flashes, night sweats, increased anxiety and depression, brain fog, heart palpitations, vaginal atrophy and dryness. The vulvar and vaginal tissue dries out and loses the acidity it once had to fight infections. The whole microbiome changes, which increases the likelihood of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Other symptoms include urinary frequency, urinary urgency, pelvic pain, pain with urination, and constipation. Sensitivities to dairy and gluten may start. This is just a small list of possible symptoms, there could be more, there could be less, everyone is different.
Other symptoms are not as obvious. These include changes to cardiovascular health, bone health, and increased insulin sensitivity.
What you can do in your early years (teens and 20's) AND your 30's, 40's, 50's, to help your future self through perimenopause and menopause.
Strength Train (build up a bank of great, strong muscles and bones) + think about your children or grandchildren now and let them know how important it is to start taking care of their health EARLY! This can help to PREVENT osteoporosis in their future and help to decrease risk of cardiovascular problems.
Weight bearing exercise including jumping.
Eat a balanced, nutritious diet low in process foods (The Mediterranean Diet proves to be a winner).
Limit or do not drink alcohol.
Limit or do not drink caffeine.
Start and keep up with a meditation practice/find something you love to do that de-stresses you and do it more often.
Why work with a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist during peri and postmenopause?
80% of peri and postmenopause symptoms can be modified with lifestyle changes. We are the professionals who can help you make these lifestyle changes and set you up with an exercise program designed specifically for you and your needs. Not everyone can jump or perform weight bearing exercises the same exact way. We help you figure out what works for you.
We are the go-to professionals you can tell ANYTHING to and get open and honest responses. Learn about lubricants, moisturizers, hormone creams, pelvic dilators, wands, bladder and bowel habits, effective strength and weight bearing exercises, PLUS give great recommendations for other healthcare professionals you would benefit from working with.
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