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Managing Symptoms of Menopause
- Wear fabrics that breathe, such as cotton.
- Dress in layers so you can easily remove some of the layers when you are warm.
- If you feel a hot flash coming on, drink a glass of cold water.
- If troubled by night sweats, keep a cold facecloth or ice pack by your bed.
- Consider investing in mattress pads or bedding that is designed to keep you cool
- Decrease your intake of caffeine and alcohol.
- Avoid spicy foods and hot drinks.
- Avoid tobacco.
- The herb black cohosh is also widely used to treat hot flashes. Talk to your doctor before taking any herbs or supplements.
Vaginal Dryness and Urinary Problems
- Use a vaginal cream or lubricant (avoid petroleum jelly) to help reduce pain from dryness during sexual intercourse.
- Urinate before and after sexual intercourse to help prevent bladder infections.
- To help prevent urinary tract infections , drink plenty of fluids and empty your bladder frequently.
- Try Kegel exercises daily. These exercises, which tighten and relax the muscles you use to stop urination, strengthen the vaginal muscles, enhance orgasm, and help prevent incontinence .
- Communicate openly with your partner about your symptoms and ask for support.
- Join or even start a support group specific to menopause or other life changes you are experiencing.
- Find and share support with colleagues at work who are going through the same experience.
- Seek counseling .
- Identify which sources of stress you can eliminate from your life.
- Engage in an aerobic exercise . Talk with your doctor first about how long to exercise and how often.
- Find ways to incorporate more exercise into your daily routine, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Decrease your intake of saturated fat and calories, and increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
National Women's Health Resource Center http://www.healthywomen.org
The North American Menopause Society http://www.menopause.org
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Women's Health Matters http://www.womenshealthmatters.ca
Acute cystitis in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated June 4, 2013. Accessed July 17, 2013.
Menopause. American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at: http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq047.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20130718T1434007150 . Accessed July 17, 2013.
Menopause. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated January 15, 2013. Accessed July 17, 2013.
Menopause relief and symptom treatments. US Department of Health and Human Services Women's Health website. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/menopause/symptom-relief-treatment/ . Updated September 22, 2010. Accessed July 17, 2013.
Montemuro, S. Relieving the symptoms of menopause: From herbs to hormones. BCMJ . 2001;43(8):452-457.
Teoman N, Ozcan A, Acar B. The effect of exercise on physical fitness and quality of life in postmenopausal women. Maturitas . 2004 Jan 20;47(1):71-77.
Urinary incontinence in women. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated Jun 5, 2013. Accessed July 17, 2013.
1/30/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php : Borrelli F, Ernst E. Black cohosh ( Cimicifuga racemosa ): a systematic review of adverse events. Am J Obstet Gynecol . 2008;199:455-466.
1/30/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php : Kaszkin-Bettag M, Ventskovskiy BM, Solskyy S, et al. Confirmation of the efficacy of ERr 731 in perimenopausal women with menopausal symptoms. Altern Ther Health Med . 2009;15:24-34.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 07/2013
- Update Date: 00/71/2013