As women, we go through a lot. Yet, we tend to shy away from talking about some of those experiences, such as menopause. I think because we don’t speak on it, there is still a serious lack of understanding about what menopause is and how it affects a lot of women. We want to shine some light on this very natural process and how to fight some of the symptoms with Traditional Chinese Medicine.
What is Menopause?
Menopause is a transitional period marking the cessation of ovulation in a woman’s body. Most women stop menstruating between the ages of 48 and 52, but symptoms can begin earlier. However, it is not limited to older women. You can enter sudden menopause as a result of having a hysterectomy, or as a result of certain cancer treatments.
Symptoms vary from mild to severe, and are brought on as our bodies try to adapt to decreasing amounts of estrogen. Symptoms include:
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats
- Insomnia, fatigue
- Mood swings
- Memory loss
- Vaginal dryness
- Joint pain
- Weight gain.
Typically, 20-25% of women will experience no symptoms at all. However, another 25% will experience significant problems that will make it hard for them to carry on with life as they currently know it—not to say they cannot, but they may need the right help and support.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, menopause is seen as an important time in the life of a woman, moving her from being a mother into a wise matriarch of the family.
Treating Menopause with Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs
Few areas of women’s health stir up as much confusion and debate as Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), which is normally started when the first symptoms of menopause appear. While HRT may alleviate hot flashes and prevent osteoporosis, they may also increase the risk of breast, ovarian and uterine cancer, and have a number of significant side-effects. But HRT isn’t the only solution.
Western medicine in the form of acupuncture and Chinese herbs has long recognized that health and vitality can be sustained over a woman’s lifetime by restoring balance within the body and supporting the natural production of essential hormones.
In this study published by Medical News Today, if was found that acupuncture treatments reduced hot flashed and night sweats by over a third in menopausal women. This benefit lasted for at least 6 months. They received 20 treatments within the 6 months prior.
This study also determined that acupuncture, done by a licensed acupuncturist, is one of the only treatments to help with the balancing of hormones without any side effects. The maximum benefit occurred after about eight treatments.
With support from Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs, menopause can be a time of a revival of vital energy and an opportunity for personal growth. Make an appointment today to learn more.