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Naturopath Frequently Asked Questions

15.06.2016

FAQs_SamIn the role of Naturopath, Clinical Assistant and Weight Loss Consultant, I speak to a wide range of patients about a variety of concerns. It never ceases to amaze me how powerful and ‘connected’ the human body is.
Understanding the changes and understanding that you are not alone, is a powerful resource. Below I have complied some frequently asked questions that every lady should know.

Please contact us if you have any questions.

What medications should I take for menopause?
Menopause is a journey that all women will go through as they age. If the journey reaches the point where menopause interrupts your lifestyle, we at the Australian Menopause Centre recommend bio-identical hormones to support the body through the transition, supplementing hormones where they are deficient.
Calcium supplementation should be considered.

What is involved in the treatment of menopause?
Menopause cannot be ‘treated’ as it is not a disease. It can, however, be a rocky transitional time that can be supplemented, where necessary, in order to make the transition as comfortable as possible.

What happens when you stop BHRT?
After being assessed as being suitable for weaning, and once you’re off the medication, we expect you to have minimal/no menopausal symptoms.

Which doctors specialise in Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Those that know how to use it. Our doctors have been successfully prescribing BHRT in peri-menopausal and menopausal women for over a decade, making the Australian Menopause Centre an expert in the field – we’ve seen it all.

How can I relieve hot flushes during menopause?
The most common cause of a hot flush during menopause is a lack of oestrogen. Therefore, oestrogen supplementation usually relieves hot flushes during menopause. Other additional factors that contribute to hot flush intensity and frequency involve diet, sleep and stress.

What does a hot flush feel like?

The experience is different for every woman, but the most common experience is an intense heat that lasts for up to a minute.

Does menopause make depression worse?
Yes. If your depression is hormone related, changes in hormone levels can make it worse. If your depression is not hormone related the stress of menopausal symptoms can make your depression worse.

Are there benefits of taking birth control pills during menopause?
No. However, birth control during peri-menopause is beneficial as a contraceptive method.

Do I need to take birth control pills during perimenopause?
If you are sexually active and do not wish to be pregnant, contraceptive control is still recommended. The chance of pregnancy during peri-menopause is very low, but still possible.

What are symptoms of menopause while on the pill?
The same as being off the pill; hot flushes, night sweats, mood changes, sleep disturbances, fluctuating weight etc.

What to do when diagnosed with menopause too early?
Look into support for any uncomfortable symptoms experienced during the transition. We recommend bio-identical hormones to supplement your body’s needs.

What does BHRT do to the body?
Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy provides hormones to the body where they are lacking.

Does BHRT work?
Yes. BHRT is used to supplement any deficiency in your body. If you have a hormone deficiency, BHRT can be quite successful at reducing or eliminating any symptoms associated with the deficiency (hot flushes, mood changes, sleep issues, breast tenderness etc.).

Can BHRT cause cancer?
We believe BHRT to be safer than synthetic hormones, but agree that whilst studies are showing good results, further studies are needed.

When should you start taking BHRT?
When you start experiencing hormone deficiency symptoms that interfere with your quality of life.

What’s the difference between Hormone Replacement Therapy and Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Bio-identical hormones are structurally the same as the hormones that you naturally produce in your body. Your body knows how to use them, how to metabolise them and how to eliminate them. ‘HRT’ are hormone-like molecules that act like hormones and are generally unfamiliar to the body.

What is the last period before menopause like?

This is a different experience for each woman. It may be short, it may be long, it may be your ‘normal’. If a bleed lasts for longer than 7 days, please contact a health practitioner to discuss.

Is it normal to bleed after menopause?
Once you have gone 12 months without a bleed it is unlikely. If you are on oestrogen supplementation, excessive amounts or a sensitivity to oestrogen may bring on a bleed. Please speak to a practitioner to identify the cause of the bleed, as further investigation may be needed.

How to handle menopause related headaches?
As with any headache, the key for treatment is to identify the cause of the headache, and treat appropriately. Communication with our clinical staff is key to success.

What happens to vaginal labias during menopause?
Reduced or insufficient oestrogen may cause the tissues of the vulva and the lining of the vagina to become thinner, drier and less elastic or flexible. Supplementation with bioidentical oestrogen can help to reverse this.

What causes night sweats in menopause?

Night sweats are caused by an insufficient amount of hormones, typically oestrogen, that is unable to satisfy the current hormone demand in the body. This is typical of hormone deficiency and supplementing with the correct hormone, at the correct amount, can reduce or eliminate this symptom.

Does menopause cause skin conditions?
Changes in hormonal levels can result in a drying of the skin. This may create flaky skin, itchy skin or even exacerbate a concurrent skin condition (eczema, psoriasis etc.). Menopause does not typically “cause” skin conditions.

What causes itching during menopause?
Typically itching is due to an oestrogen deficiency, however other causes may be investigated. A lack of oestrogen can lead to drying of the skin (leading to itchiness) and formication (itching, crawling sensation under the skin).

What happens to your ovaries after menopause?
As you age and the ovaries retire, the ovaries shrink and get reabsorbed into the body.

Does your uterus shrink during menopause?

No. However it no longer grows an endometrial lining that sheds each month.

How to get rid of menopause related facial hair?
Menopause related facial hair is typically due to an imbalance of the oestrogen and testosterone levels. Balancing these levels through bio-identical supplementation should reduce the hair growth.

What can I expect from menopause?
The menopausal journey is different for every woman. Expect to go through some changes (both physically and mentally). Menopause is a passage of life that we pass through only once – enjoy the journey.

What happens to my body during menopause?
As your hormonal levels change you should start to see some signs of aging and wisdom. Most women experience a change in body shape as they start to develop some abdominal adiposity without any change in diet or exercise – with the appropriate diet and lifestyle, this can be managed.

What happens to my body after menopause?
With the appropriate diet and lifestyle, not much will change, except for the unavoidable signs of ageing (unless you look into cosmetic surgery). Your body may start to slow down, but with the appropriate diet and lifestyle you should be able to keep up with the lifestyle routine of your choice.

What can I eat during menopause to lose weight?
Enjoy plenty of fresh quality vegetables and high quality lean meats, along with nuts, eggs and fruit. Enjoy a diet full of clean and healthy foods avoiding processed and packaged products where possible.