dr visit

You have an an appointment to see your doctor because (it’s probably nothing… but), you’re feeling:

  • anxious
  • your joints hurt
  • you’re not sleeping
  • your sex drive has driven off into the sunset
  • you can’t shift the extra weight that appeared seemingly overnight
  • and you’re just not feeling like yourself anymore

You think you might be making a fuss over nothing, but then again… something isn’t right.
Being 40-ish is a busy time in a woman’s life, so you may put your symptoms down to work, stress, family commitments, lack of exercise, too much alcohol, too little sleep…

The list of excuses is seemingly endless, yet we rarely stop to think that it may be our hormones messing with our status quo.

So, off to you go to your GP and after your appointment, you either walk away feeling heard and understood, with a treatment plan that feels right;

Or, you feel dismissed with “oh that’s just life, you’ll have to deal with it”,
or: “you’re too young for menopause”
or: “take this anti depressant”

Firstly: there’s no such thing as “too young”. Most women start to notice changes from their early 40’s, with some experiencing early menopause in their 30’s or premature menopause as young as 12.
Secondly: anti depressants aren’t a cure all. If you need them, and are happy to take them, then yes, of course you should. However, we need to consider the bigger picture.

Here’s the thing: doctors don’t learn about menopause during their studies. Unless they seek out information for themselves, they are often as stuck in the same platitudes and misconceptions as many in our society are.

But know this: there are many options to managing menopause and the symptoms you may be experiencing. These include medical intervention (MHT/HRT), complimentary medicine, lifestyle choices and mindset.

You may like to consider one or a combination of these depending on what your main concerns are. Please note that medical and complimentary treatments should be taken with the consultation of a professional as they may interfere with each other.

Time to take charge

Remember at school, when the teacher would preface a statement with “this is important, write it down”?

well, this is important: write it down
You’re the expert in your body,
You know what’s normal for you, and what isn’t
Remember this. For ever!

How you manage your menopause symptoms is your personal decision, but if you do want to talk to your doctor, here are some suggestions to help you get the best possible information, support and treatment.

They say knowledge is power, so it’s important to do your research and prepare before seeking help.

1 – VISIT the AMS (Australasian Menopause Society) and look at their guidelines

2 – PREPARE for your appointment by tracking your symptoms (click here to download a simple tracker)

3 – ASK who is the best doctor to see in the practice (you can also find a menopause specialist on the AMS site.

4 – If possible, ask for a longer appointment so that you have time to discuss your options fully.

5 – REFLECT: do you have what you need? Think about your personal preferences and needs, so that you can tell your doctor and if you don’t feel satisfied, you can seek a second opinion

Advocating for yourself and asking for the right help can go a long way towards easing your journey through menopause. Yes, all women will experience this hormonal rollercoaster, but there’s no need to suffer. There are so many treatment options available.

HRT and breast cancer: click here to read more about the risks associated with HRT/MHT.

You can read information about menopause, peri-menopause, how to get help at work, etc, in my blog posts.

Click here to read more.

Click here to book a free consult with Anja

Anja is a Menopause and Health Coach, helping women like you, navigate this busy time of life, by putting in place lifestyle habits that help boost health and vitality, and moving away from habits that no longer serve them.

Looking after your mental and physical health, pays dividends for your future self.

Anja Lineen, Menopause and health coach

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