Can hypnotherapy help with the menopause? In this blog we will answer this question by exploring the impact of the menopause and its different stages before considering some of the main symptoms in more depth, concluding with an overview of how hypnotherapy can help reduce the impact of these symptoms, enabling you to to meet each day with renewed confidence and positivity.
What is the impact of menopause?
Whilst I could devote several blogs to this topic, I have chosen a few key facts to demonstrate its far reaching impact.
According to Nuffield Health, almost 1 in 2 menopausal women experience depression, 1 in 3 suffer from anxiety, 1 in 10 seriously consider resigning as a result of their menopausal symptoms, whilst 1 in 50 are on long term sick leave.
How long does the menopause last?
The menopause can be divided into three stages; peri-menopause, menopause and post-menopause. On average, most women experience all three stages between the ages of 45 and 60.
The first stage, peri-menopause, is the phase where a woman’s body prepares for the ,menopause. The average age for this phase, which can last for up to four years, is 47. During this time the menstrual cycle becomes irregular and the levels of the two sex hormones, progesterone and estrogen, start to diminish. As a result of these hormonal changes, a woman may experience hot flushes, night sweats, mood changes, changes in sleep patterns, headaches, brain fog, weight gain and changes in sexual function. (e.g. vaginal dryness and/or reduced libido).
Menopause is recognised as the time when menstruation has completely ceased for 12 months without interruption. Within the UK most women experience menopause at the age of 51 years.
Post-menopause begins immediately after the menopause and continues for the remainder of a woman’s life. During this time, previous symptoms may lessen in intensity. At this time, some women report feeling more positive about themselves and their lives, whilst also experiencing an upsurge in energy. Common post-menopausal symptoms include insomnia, weight gain, vaginal thinning and dryness, osteoporosis, incontinence and urinary tract infections.
What are some of the main physical and emotional symptoms of menopause?
75% of menopausal women experience hot flushes; an unexpected feeling of heat that rises within your body and can spread to your face, generally last for 3-5 minutes. Whilst most women find that they can manage these symptoms without major inconvenience, 1 in 5 women report that their lives are disrupted by the severity of their symptoms.
37% of menopausal women experience night sweats which can impact upon sleep quality, hydration and energy levels. Whilst night sweats, like hot flushes, generally reduce over time, some women in their sixties continue to experience night sweats on a regular basis.
The British Menopause Society reported that approximately 50% of all women surveyed experienced mood swings. These can be due to the instability of hormone levels and can result in a woman experiencing a whole spectrum of emotions within a short period of time. Many women report experiencing bouts of sadness, depression or tearfulness for no apparent reason that literally just “comes and goes”. The situation is often intensified due to a lack of sleep, caused by night sweats, anxiety, or other causes, that can result in women feeling more emotional and less resilient due to their reduced energy levels.
Menopausal anxiety can impact upon every aspect of life. For many women, the menopause itself, as a time of transition, can be anxiety provoking. There can be feelings of loss, together with feelings of uncertainty about what the future will hold. During this time children may be leaving home and there can be an awareness of a change in identity. The physical changes within your body can make you feel less in control; of your body or of your day to day life. Fluctuating hormones and irregular or broken sleep patterns can increase these feelings of anxiety further.
Brain fog can be attributable to fluctuating hormone levels and irregular or disrupted sleep patterns. Examples of brain fog include a reduced ability to concentrate, a slower level of cognitive processing and/or difficulty in remembering. Brain fog appears to peak within the perimenopause period and can be intensified when it becomes the focus of anxiety (i.e. by worrying about not thinking clearly one becomes less able to do so).
How can hypnotherapy help with the menopause?
Hypnotherapy uses the power of your creative and resourceful unconscious mind to enable you to make deep and lasting changes at an unconscious level, both physically and emotionally.
Every thought we have has an effect upon our bodies. So, by managing and controlling our thoughts in relation to the menopause we can positively affect the way our bodies respond to individual symptoms. Within hypnosis, you can connect with your body at a very deep level and create deep and sustainable change. This will not only transform the unconscious messages you tell yourself, in relation to your menopausal experiences, but will also empower you to take back control as you learn to use visualisation creatively to create change at a cellular level.
Hypnotherapy provides an holistic approach to menopause. Whatever symptom or combination of symptoms brings you to hypnotherapy you will find as we work together that you achieve a deep transformation in your understanding and experience of the menopause that will empower you to move forward into this new chapter of your life with renewed confidence, self-assurance and joy.
As a certified HypnoMenopause® practitioner, I would be delighted to work with you wherever you are within your menopause journey.
Contact me or call me (07516 521199) to find out more.