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  • It's been awhile since we talked about menopause

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    38 posts, 14 voices, 2499 views, started May 22, 2012

    Posted on Tuesday, May 22, 2012 by Cynthia Schmidt

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      Anyone having struggles? Let’s talk about it and share some of our solutions.

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        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Marya1961 wrote May 22, 2012
        • I am dealing with sleep disturbance which probably goes hand and hand with my fibromyalgia too.  Hot flashes still plague me and I don’t understand it since I had a complete hysterectomy (ovaries gone too).  There are times I just don’t feel right..do you ladies feel like that too?



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          Tuliplady wrote May 22, 2012
        • The hot flashes are getting bothersome.  I rarely have them at night, but at 8:30 in the morning at work.  And young men are not sympathetic to the old woman on the crew having hot flashes!!!

          I haven’t figured out if my brain fog comes from the hormone issues or from the dietary issues or from the allergies. Maybe a combination of all.



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          Vikki Hall wrote May 22, 2012
        • I haven’t really had hot flashes but I’m having a period about every 3 weeks and I’m super sensitive. I’m hungry all the time but want nothing. And in spite of me trying to exercise my menopot is still there...... Bloat at the thought of sodium and what about those sleepless nights????? Ugh!!!!!!!!



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote May 22, 2012
        • Tulip, the brain fog is definitely hormonal. I hear it’s only temporary.

          Vikki, My midsection is what plagues me as well. I’m still working on it but if I come up with something I’ll let you know.

          Mary, that’s the biggest complaint for women in perimenopause - sleep disturbances. You‘re not the first person I’ve heard has hot flashes even with a complete historectomy. A girlfriend of mine in California is having them too.



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          Marya1961 wrote May 23, 2012
        • We all need a vacation...somewhere breezy, cool and stress-free!estatic



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          Mzd3 wrote May 23, 2012
        • Mary, a vacation somewhere like that sounds heavenly happy



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          Vikki Hall wrote May 23, 2012
        • VACATION! VACATION! VACATION!



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          Tuliplady wrote May 23, 2012
        • Oh and I forgot to mention the mood swing roller coaster.  

          Last Sunday I woke up in a perfectly chipper mood.  At Bible study I almost reached across the table and choked the living crap out of someone, and by afternoon I was wallowing in the depths of despair.  My poor hubby never knows how he’s supposed to react.



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          Amy L. Harden wrote May 24, 2012
        • Hey ladies:

          When I hit menopause 5 years ago the literal $h!+ hit the fan. In five years I have discovered I have sleep apnea, severe food and environmental allergies....ALL can cause depression, panic, hot flashes, foggy brain, confusion, irritability and more!  Those are really the tame things that sleep apnea and allergies can cause.  I have gained weight around my middle, which is now stubborn to anything I do.  This is what I have done to keep on an even keel as much as I can:

          I do use HRT to help with hot flashes, natural is best. (Hot Flashes and irritability)

          I eliminated wheat, dairy, soy, yeast and gluten from my diet. I eat whole foods, fresh fruits and veggies. All caused bloating and #1 cause of foggy brain is dairy and wheat products. I eliminated all soda and working on eliminating sugar.

          I supplement with a after50 vitamin,  D3 and calcium.

          I had a sleep study done and wear a CPAP Mask at night and soon will be trying out the mouth device.

          I power walk twice a day, a minimum of 30 minutes each and I make sure I get 15-20 minutes of concentrated sun to stay happy and motivated. (wearing an SPF of course...a SAD light when it is rainy)

          I increased my water intake.

          During the change our bodies are in flux, so we must become in tune with them.  So don’t ignore symptoms that you once didn’t have.  My doctor was treating me for panic attacks when all they were were allergy reactions to food and mold.  I have been rushed to the hospital twice for mold exposure on food....it is crazy!!!  

          I encourage you to get your hormone levels tested, along with your thyroid and adrenals.

          Set up a sleep study to see if your sleep problems are connected to menopause or is something you need to be concern about , as sleep apnea can lead to stroke, high blood pressure, heart attack, severe depression etc. Sleep deprivation can also cause foggy brain, irritability, confusion.  My sleep apnea was discovered when I was so deprived I started having Vertigo.

          Also, please get allergy tested for foods and the environment.  Things that you once could eat may be bloating you or making irritable...your environment maybe be making you sick.

          All meshed together, The Change can become a monster.



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote May 24, 2012
        • Amy, thank you thank you thank you!!!!! Your sharing will help us allheart



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          Dori Chatterton wrote May 24, 2012
        • My doctor advised me to start taking Estroven so I bought the Estroven Maximum Strength!  This seems to help with my mood swings,hot flashes,panic attacks and lightheadness!  I also bought a wonderful (large) fan for my bedroom to help me sleep better..If I keep the temp down then I do sleep better. I have a very loving husband that understand and sleeps with a lot a blankets estatic.



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          Yankee_gal wrote May 24, 2012
        • My symptoms hit me like a brick wall last August. Being out of work at the time, I began reading everything I could find. I started taking the following which eliminated hot flashes, lack of libido and that feeling of being fuzzy headed. I have always had insomnia, so that is still part of my life. I took these for 6 weeks, with relief after 2 1/2.  

          1. Stress Care for energy and Adrenal Support ( the adrenal glands rule the process !)
          2. Vitex Elixir
          3. Peruvian Gold Maca

          I found these at Whole foods as well as a smaller health food store. Although this combo is not for everyone, you may wish to look into each as something to try.

          May I ask if anyone has had what feels like period cramps even though they have not had a cycle in 9 months?



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          Nita P wrote May 26, 2012
        • i have hot flashes very regularly,  vaginal dryness, tender breasts and my mood is  very unsociable.  im not rude i just prefer to stay at home, not go out and pretty much keep to myself.  i am not someone who can take medicine without having a reaction so i try and stay away from it.  the best and only thing that helps me is good great health.  sounds quite straight forward and easy, but for me it is not.  i like my sweets, i do not exercise as much as i should, i like tea and coffee, salty food etc. i need more sleep, loads of veges and better discipline



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote May 26, 2012
        • First I want to thank everyone for keeping this conversation going. I come back to this thread each day and feel encouraged by reading what others are experiencing and what they are doing about their symptoms.

          Yankee gal, I started having some cramping after I was taking supplements that mimmick estrogen. I have been taking i-cool. I had some cramps after the first few days and was concerned that it may have stimulated the onset of a menstrual cycle. Then it went away after a few days. I’m not getting the relief I was hoping for with this product but I’m going to give it a fair chance and re assess after the 30 day supply is done. If I don’t get any relief at that point I’m going to look into what you‘re taking. I have a Whole Foods in town so I’m sure they carry it. Thank you for posting what has helped you.

          It’s interesting that others have felt these panic attacks. I’m baffled how they just come out of nowhere. I’ll feel my heart start to race, then feel an intense sense of anxiety and then the hot flash comes. It’s pretty uncomfortable.



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          Mzd3 wrote May 26, 2012
        • My cycle is still regular, but I do have insomnia and anxiety. Oh, and mood a swings happy



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          Marya1961 wrote May 27, 2012
        • Thank you Amy for all the info!  I have basically followed everything you mentioned with the exception of the hormones..just can’t take it.  I am presently on a low dose of Lexapro which helps with depression and anxiety.  I eat very healthy and exercise, take the D3 and calcium, watch my sugar intake and drink lots of water.

          I have been following an endocrinologist for my thyroid and adrenals and I do have allergies which I take meds for.

          I guess in my case, the sleep issues and hot flashes will pass, but I have learned one thing...that environment, i.e. where you live does play a huge role in keeping stress levels down..in my case, once hub retires down the road we can finally move to a different location and out of the city/suburb area.



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          Tuliplady wrote May 27, 2012
        • Do any of you have asthma?  And if so, have you noticed that it has become worse?  

          After reading all this, I’m wondering if what I’m thinking is more frequent asthma trouble is actually a sort of panic attack.



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote May 27, 2012
        • That’s interesting, Tulip. I have asthma. It’s been difficult lately and I was wondering if it may be I’m getting too used to my medicine. I’m going to keep an eye on that.



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          Yankee_gal wrote May 27, 2012
        • Hi Ladies! Hope the holiday weekend is being good to all. I posted a few days ago in regards to some things that have helped me SO much, particularly with the hot flashes (they are gone...for now at least).

          How odd the universe works. That evening I began having cramps. I have been dealing with a cyst that in the past goes away on its own (last one last year). I am now dealing with a full on cycle along with cramping, headache, and that lovely feeling of wanting to go postal or cry at the drop of a hat...What the Heck!  Has anyone had this emerging of a cycle after 9 - 10 months?  

          Your thoughts are much appreciated.



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          Tuliplady wrote May 27, 2012
        • Cynthia, I haven’t been on any medication for mine for years and years and suddenly I’m feeling as though I should be considering it.

          Yankee gal, I haven’t experienced what you describe, but a good friend of mine has.  She went for acupuncture treatments and that seemed to help her.  Personally, I always wondered if hers wasn’t brought on/aggravated by the tremendous load of stress she was under at the time.



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          Yankee_gal wrote May 27, 2012
        • Tuliplady...you may have something. Stress has been a constant of late. I do feel stress has aged me SO much in the last year.



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          Vikki Hall wrote May 28, 2012
        • I forgot about the panic attacks! I occasionally do have them but didn’t associate it with my age ohhhh



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          Mzd3 wrote May 28, 2012
        • Amy, I’m getting ready to go do a sleep study too. My hubby says I stop breathing at night, and I have been having some dizziness thru the day at times. I have also gained weight just in the mid section that was never there before and I hate it. This getting old is for the birds!



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote May 28, 2012
        • I think the random panic attacks are what bother me the most. well, that and the weight around my waist. I want to do some research on this and see if I can come up with something.



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote Jun 4, 2012
        • I’ve been taking I-Cool now for awhile and I think it’s helping. I don’t seem to be having hot flashes as often and my mood is better. I just ordered Amberen, though. I have been curious about it. It’s a 90 day process according the the manufacturer. After the 90 day course of treatment, it’s taken as needed from that point. That sounded curious to me so I’m going to try it. Has anyone used it?



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          Kmarie wrote Jun 4, 2012
        • I have not had any hot flashes but my PMS is worse than it was as a teenager. My period is about every four to six weeks and the cramps are killing me.



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          Wolfrider wrote Sep 2, 2012
        • This topic is what brought me to Fabulously40!  I had been doing a Google search on the possibility of menopause happening at 42—that’s how I found this site.  (For the record, it’s apparently entirely possible.  The medical community tends to be in denial, but there are many voices out there from women who lived or are living through it earlier than “expected“.)

          My periods have shortened to about 3 days at the most over the last few years.  PMS was lasting longer than Aunt Flo’s actual visit!  estatic  However, this past couple of months, something has felt very much amiss.  I’ve been having the more... amusing aspects of PMS now for three weeks and counting: cramps, tender boobs, bloating, gassiness.  It used to be that the cramping in particular meant relief was in sight in the next day or two; now it’s just symptoms, but no period.  I’m not sure if I’ve been having hot flashes, mainly because I’ve always been a “sweater” and our summers here hit the triple digits.  I do seem to sweat longer now when I go into an air-conditioned room after being outside.  For about a year now, I’ve been experiencing increasingly frequent cases of ‘CRS‘, especially when speaking.  That symptom has been more distressing to me than all the others; words and language are my thing.  (I imagine it would be kind of like an athlete losing a limb or two.)  Last week I just started bawling and couldn’t stop—and I’m usually pretty stoic.  I am going to try to convince my (female) doctor that menopause is at least a possibility... isn’t there a blood test that can determine that?

          Also... in reading about other Fabulous ladies’ manifestations of menopause (increased asthma, allergies, etc.), I’m wondering about an event that happened two years ago while my mother was dying.  I was hanging out with my brother, just relaxing, and out of nowhere I was certain I was having a heart attack (CVD runs on both sides of my family).  Eight hours and $10K+ in bills later, I was told it was just a panic attack, sweetie... now you just run on home.  I call BS—I know exactly what a panic attack feels like.  Thankfully, they did rule out a cardiac event, but I’ve been left wondering all this time what exactly did happen (and living in fear of it happening again, suddenly like it did the first time).  Could it possibly be perimenopause-related...?

          Sorry about the mad length... thanks for reading happy



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          Tuliplady wrote Sep 2, 2012
        • Welcome Wolfrider!  Always glad to hear a new voice on the subject.

          If your doctor tells you perimenopause can’t begin at 42 or younger, you just tell her to go talk to some REAL women!!!

            I was younger than 40 when I began having my first hot flashes, though I did not realize at the time what they were.  I’m 45 now and have had the rest of this stuff going on for at least a year.



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          Nita P wrote Sep 2, 2012
        • my asthma is not affected by my menapause phase.  i am not on any medication for this.  but i do have hot flashes so often, i cant tell if i am hot because the temperature is or because its a flash.  something that seems to be getting noticebly worse is my memory.  i need to write things down more often or i forget.



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          Tuliplady wrote Sep 2, 2012
        • Nita, I’ve had that problem this summer too.  It’s so hot at work I don’t know if I’m hot flashing or if it’s just plain hot!



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          Denise Richardson wrote Sep 3, 2012
        • I’m finding that I’m more forgetful on some things. The hot flashes have not let up and my skin is seemingly more dry and itchy lately.



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          Wolfrider wrote Sep 3, 2012
        • Thanks, Tulip!  I will do that.  You’d think a female doctor would get that not all women fall under the textbook definition, right?

          I also hear you, Nita and Neicy, about forgetfulness and not being sure if it’s hot flashes or just summer.  I don’t remember signing up for all this... do you?  Fah. tongue out



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          Cynthia Schmidt wrote Sep 4, 2012
        • What you‘re describing sounds very similar to the whole process I experienced - starting in my 40’s. The truth of the matter is, the medical community is still very baffled about menopause and what to do for us who are suffering with it. We‘re really out there on our own with a trial and error process for something to alleviate the symptoms. It’s important for all of us to band together with thoughts, support, advice, suggestions - but in truth everyone’s menopause is different. I work with a nurse practitioner and asked her one day why endocrinologists don’t get more involved with menopause since they deal with hormones on a regular basis. She said that menopause is “messy” and I think that really summed it up. Let’s keep this dialog going and help one another through this!



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          Denise Richardson wrote Sep 4, 2012
        • WolfRider, it drives me mad I’m scratching like I have fleas or something lol, it’s not cute or comfortable anyone have any suggestions on the skin issue?



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          Vikki Hall wrote Sep 5, 2012
        • Ok so the really long PMS is symptomatic to peri!?!?!?! Good to hear others out there.

          So what about the constant bloating? I’ve increased my fiber so I understand that in the beginning maybe some extra bloat. But I constantly feel like I’m bloated even when I have not eaten or drank anything.  Right now that is what is bothering me the most.



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          Wolfrider wrote Sep 5, 2012
        • Gangaji—For itchy skin, an oatmeal bath or shower might help you.  You can simply use a handful or two as you would a pouf the next time you shower (although that could be messy) or put some in a cheesecloth bag and drop in in your tub.
          Aloe vera might be helpful for spot itching during the day. It’s usually used for minor burns, but is soothing for your skin in general.
          I’ll look around for other ideas if you like.

          Vikki—yep, I think bloating is one of the many gifts peri bestows upon us.  Weight gain seems to be mainly in the waistline during this time too.  I don’t know what to do about it either, but if I discover anything, I’ll let you know!



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          Jc2222 wrote Sep 5, 2012
        • I am have hot flashes, night sweats, hungry all the time but don’t really want anything, and mood swings. I try not to over react to things, I try to just breathe deep when I am feeling frustrated. Tonight, my husband came home and woke up my grand daughter who I had taken all afternoon to get to sleep.
          She was fussy because she had physical therapy today. I had dinner ready and thought we could have a quiet dinner while she napped. He goes running into her room and picks her up out of the crib. Of course, she starts crying. I wanted to hit him with my frying pan. Instead, I grabbed some bottled water and told him I was taking a walk. I walked off the anger and came back home. What really bothers me is not so much the symptoms of menopause or perimenopause, it is that whether or not I am really angry or frustrated or upset, I am going to be treated like it is just hormonal. I have a hard time trying to sort out what feelings are real and what feelings are over reacting. I don’t need my husband and kids constantly acting like I am the crazy lady with menopause at times when I am truly trying to get across how I feel about something.



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