“I am EXHAUSTED…” If this is something you find yourself saying often during menopause, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Daily personal and professional obligations, especially for those of us who are multitaskers, can contribute to this feeling of tiredness – however, in this instance, we’re specifically talking about overwhelming fatigue, which could be a sign of a bigger issue.
In this episode of Ask Our Experts, Bonafide® Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Alyssa Dweck discusses the importance of determining the underlying cause of your exhaustion during menopause with your healthcare provider, but also provides tips you can apply to your everyday routine to help reduce this feeling of tiredness during menopause, improve your sleep and positively impact your energy levels. Learn more in the full video, below.
So, do you know what I hear in my office day in and day out, particularly in the menopausal population? I am exhausted. This is such a common complaint. And of course, so many women are multitaskers with family obligations and professional responsibilities. It's reasonable to be tired, but I'm talking about feeling like you have no energy during menopause.
What Causes Menopause Tiredness?
So first, it's really important that we get to the bottom of things. Could the exhaustion during menopause you’re experiencing perhaps be caused by a medical problem, like a thyroid disorder or Lyme disease, especially in the Northeast? Or is it possible that your tiredness during menopause is actually caused by anemia or even depression, in which oftentimes the first symptom is overwhelming fatigue?
It really is a good idea to make a visit to your internist or even your gynecologist to rule out these other issues and in order to get to the bottom of your menopause exhaustion. It’s also incredibly common to be tired and feel exhausted just because of the changes that are occurring during menopause as your estrogen levels are dropping and eventually are really, really low.
Menopausal women also often struggle with sleep, in general. They have trouble falling asleep and they have trouble staying asleep, which can cause them to feel more tired during their menopause transition. And this interrupted sleep can also cause a disruption in the quality of sleep – which can really translate to exhaustion during the day, making you feel like you have no energy during menopause.
What to Do About Menopause Exhaustion?
In general, it's ideal to get 8 hours, give or take, of sleep per night, and this means quality, uninterrupted sleep. So, how can we improve our sleep hygiene during menopause? First, try to avoid alcohol, a large meal or caffeine shortly before you're going to go to sleep. These things can all make you physically uncomfortable, but also interrupt sleep habits, contributing to menopause exhaustion.
Next, consider your sleep chamber. Make sure the ambient temperature is comfortable. This might even mean freezing your partner out because so many menopausal women suffer with the warmth of hot flashes at night. Make sure you shut down any electronic screens because the blue light can interfere with regular sleep cycles.
Finally, if you're suffering with the physical discomfort of hot flashes and night sweats, you really need to address them. Whether that means considering treatment such as hormone therapy, antidepressants, or other medications and lifestyle changes. Or of course, you could give Relizen® a try. Relizen is a hormone-free, non-phytoestrogen containing herbal supplement that really helps women control their vasomotor symptoms of menopause (hot flashes and night sweats) so they can get a good night's sleep. It's so important to get a good night's sleep because it can impact what you do the next day. If you're exhausted, you reach for a huge, caffeinated beverage or maybe a highly sugary snack throughout the day. And what happens after that? The sugar crash. And that makes you even more tired than when you originally started out.
So, monitoring diet, increasing exercise, minimizing stress, all are going to have a positive effect on optimal sleep. Finally, have sex. What better to relax you before you go to sleep and give you a restful night?
I hope these are some helpful hints!