• Ruth Dewar

WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON? Your Guide to Entering the Menopause...

World Menopause Day is 18th October 2021


Following on from World Menopause Day, the NU-U team really want to support women who are feeling lost and going through menopause. No two women’s experience is the same, and being aware and able to recognise that your symptoms might be down to fluctuating hormones is the first step to managing them.


Menopause happens once a woman has no menstrual periods for 12 months in a row. For many women, this occurs between the age of 45 and 55 (with the average age in the UK being 51).


For many women, it can be difficult to know if you are going through menopause, especially if you already have irregular periods. The time that leads up to menopause – which can be months or years – is known as perimenopause.


Here's our small guide to know when you're entering menopause.


Why does menopause occur?

Oestrogen is a hormone mainly produced in the ovaries and is responsible for controlling many functions in the body including the production of an egg each month (ovulation). As a woman gets older, their store of eggs in the ovaries naturally declines. Menopause occurs when your ovaries stop producing eggs and your body’s oestrogen levels fall. As a result, there are many changes that can occur to the body including no longer having periods and the symptoms we associate with menopause.


The symptoms associated with menopause tend to be a result of hormone imbalance and lack of oestrogen.


There are over 30 symptoms associated with menopause, but the British Menopause Society list of most commonly experienced symptoms includes the following.


  • Hot flushes

  • Vaginal dryness

  • Weight gain

  • Sleeping Problems

  • Stress and anxiety

  • Loss of sex drive

  • Night sweats

  • Skin changes

  • Joint aches

  • Low energy

  • Low mood

  • Period changes

  • Brain fog

  • Sensitive bladder

  • Painful sex

  • Headaches

So where do we turn for help?

With over 60% of NU-U’s clients experiencing the onset of menopause, we decided to dedicate our research time to finding the most informative website and social media groups to help you navigate your way through this journey with up to date information and where to get help if you need it.


The web is congested with “endorsed websites”, so-called “experts” and “miracle products”, all claiming to have the answer to this secretly talked about issue; however, after much deciphering and endless hours trawling through site after site, NU-U has shortlisted the following five websites for their accuracy, readability, helpfulness and most importantly humour…something we feel is seriously lacking in addressing the menopause.


  1. www.healthandher.com (@healthandherltd)

  2. www.imsociety.org

  3. www.positivepause.co.uk (@positivepauseuk)

  4. www.womenshealthmag.com/uk/beauty/skin/a35778400/menopause-skincare/

  5. www.vogue.co.uk/beauty/article/menopausal-skincare


The NU-U team would also like to highlight the importance of your approach to healthy skin should always be connected to your general health and overall wellness. The gut, skin and brain connection is vital in combatting the onset of ageing skin! What you put in…you get out.


Again, the market is saturated with herbs, tonics, supplements and faddy products all claiming to turn back time and ageing and while some products have been highly publicised nothing compares to a balanced, nutrient-rich diet and of course regular exercise.


Can exercise help with my menopause symptoms?

You might find that being more physically active helps with some of your menopause symptoms.


Regular exercise might

  • reduce your hot flushes

  • help you to manage your weight

  • lift your mood

  • improve your self-esteem

  • help you to sleep

  • reduce anxiety

After menopause, you’re also more likely to be affected by osteoporosis, a condition that causes your bones to become weaker. This is because you have less of the hormone oestrogen in your body, which is important for bone density.


Keeping active can help keep your bones healthy and can reduce the chance of them breaking or fracturing if you fall over. Bones get stronger as you use them and give them work to do. To help keep your bones strong, you should try and do both muscle-strengthening exercises and weight-bearing exercises.


Finally…our most important tip. The most important tip.


KEEP TALKING

Each and every one of us gals will experience menopause. FACT. So why are we so desperate to shy away from being open about our symptoms? Most of the clients I asked this question to mainly came up with the same answer: “because talking about what we’re going through, what we are feeling and thinking…it makes us sound CRAZY!”


Well here’s the truth ladies…laughing, joking and being open-minded, alongside being brave and advocating for your fellow woman is not crazy. It is powerful. It is a tie that binds and connects us all…globally!


So passionate are we about keeping the dialogue going on this subject, we have decided to record a series of anonymous podcasts with four of our very brilliant NU-U clients. Keep an eye out for them on our website at the end of this month. x


More in the series

Want to see what else we've written on the subject of menopause? Here're more posts in our menopause series – because we don't talk about this issue that affects all women enough!

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