Menopause means a lot of different things to women. For some, it’s the end of an era of childrearing and fertility. For others, it’s a marker of the passage of time. And for a few, it may even be a result of surgery or complications that usher in “the change.”
But no matter what menopause means to you, chances are you will deal with some of the symptoms it brings. Here are a few suggestions for finding relief, because sometimes even the smallest things can make the biggest impact.
1. Keep yourself cool
Night sweats and hot flashes are no joke. When they strike in the middle of the night, it’s best to have a tool on hand to keep cool. And by “tool,” of course, we mean this bed fan with a wireless remote. It’s designed specifically to disperse and keep that much-needed cool air directly between your sheets.
2. Meditate and focus away from the pain
Stress can aggravate the symptoms of menopause. The Mayo Clinic reports that meditation works as a stress-reliever, so sneak away to a private place for a minute and practice diaphragmatic breathing. This is when air goes deep into your abdomen and not just your mouth or lungs.
Yoga is also a great way to meditate. We put together five yoga poses specifically to help target menopause pain. Click here to get the routine.
3. Go natural
Many women have found essential oils to be helpful for relief from menopause symptoms. Consider stashing a roller bottle filled with diluted peppermint oil by the bed for night sweats, or keeping one in your purse for on-the-go relief. A diffuser is also a relaxing option to keep the room calm and cool, but don’t use it for longer than 20 to 30 minutes every 2 hours (or no longer than 1 hour at one time).
4. Change up your diet and try intermittent fasting
One study found that intermittent fasting (IF) can be especially helpful for weight control or weight loss for post-menopausal women. There are different types of intermittent fasting, all which involve restricting your calorie intake for a certain time period.
Diet methods include the 5/2, 16/8, eat-stop-eat, and warrior diet. Each type has rules about how and when you eat. Some people claim this diet improves your digestive system, lowers inflammation, and reduces body fat. However, intermittent fasting can cause health problems if you have certain conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease. Talk to your doctor before trying it.
5. Embrace exercise
Women’s bodies can change very dramatically after menopause. In fact, a new study found that menopause may change the way that women’s muscles use oxygen. These changes in the muscles mean that exercise is more important than ever. As a bonus, exercise may also help alleviate some of the most common symptoms, like weight gain, mood changes, and fatigue. For the best exercises to do during menopause, read more here.
6. Experiment with toys
Hormonal changes and physical changes during menopause can cause vaginal wall thinness and a decrease in natural lubrication. This can cause a natural decrease in libido too. It’s important to respect what works for your particular relationship, but if you and your partner want to get things going in the bedroom again, vibrators might be your answer. Studies have shown that many women have had success in increasing their libido and sexual satisfaction through the introduction of vibrators. There are many different kinds of vibrators on the market, so talk with your partner and experiment with one (or several!).
7. Use the power of your mind
There are so many websites with medical information, studies, and products that tell women menopause is something to fear. But the truth is, menopause is just another natural part of the life cycle. Try to think of it as another step in life, not something you need to escape or reverse. There’s nothing wrong with menopause, or you. Embracing this new phase in life as you move through the process can also help frame your experience.