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Mar 02-17-2012 09:26 PM

Menopause update
Hi Curlies, I haven't been here much since I discovered facebook (easier to keep in touch with everyone, not just my curlfriends) but I was thinking of you all lately because menopause is a pain and I wanted someone to talk to about it! (I have only one friend who is menopausal and she doesn't have the issues I have!)
My last period was in April 2010-I was 47. The previous fall, just after I turned 46, things really went downhill-my hair was a dry, frizzy mess, my skin was horrendous-dry, SUPER sensitive, breaking out all over, I gained so much weight, I was exhausted, etc etc....I had a few hot flashes now and then but not too bad at all.
I did not want to go the HRT route, so I tried just about everything else, but nothing worked.
So-I suffered.
Fortunately, my hair and skin have rebounded, I have lost the extra weight and feel pretty okay except for the damned hot flashes! The ones I had initially were NOTHING like the ones I have now!
I have one every hour-almost on the hour-and they are almost painful.
I sweat profusely(omg,my underboobs are the worst!)
and if I am asleep, I am wide awake in an instant.I have a fan by my bed to blow on me and that does help.
They last about 3-4 minutes.
I already can't fall asleep so the constant waking is pretty annoying.
I REALLY do not want to do the HRT.
Tell me, ladies-what is working for YOU?
Oh-I discovered that caffeine is NOT my friend!

Love ya,

rouquinne 02-17-2012 09:47 PM

Mar, i hate to tell you this, but i decided to go the HRT route. my hot flashes were SO bad that i was throwing up and having panic attacks. for the past 10 months, the brain fog and hot flashes are gone and i can sleep through the night most nights without chemical assistance.

i am much happier this way.

jeepcurlygurl 02-17-2012 11:33 PM

I can't offer anything but hugs, since at 55 I haven't even BEGUN menopause. Quite the opposite. I now have long heavy periods every 2-3 weeks. grumble grumble.

My cousin, who is almost exactly my age, has such terrible hot flashes and seems so miserable, so I feel for you guys.

rbb 02-18-2012 07:09 AM

i was taking vitamin e gelcaps 400 mg/day when i hit menopause, then i read that 800mg/day can help with hot flashes, so i did that. i never had a hot flash, there were occasional nights when i'd feel warm, but if i kicked off the blankets i was good.
i can say that i had run out of the gelcaps and had to buy the capsules (dry vit e) instead, used them for several days, and felt the difference - i was definitely headed toward mild hot flashes. i was able to buy the gelcaps then and my body went back to normal.

i'm not saying it can 'cure' hot flashes, as i might not have had strong ones, but it most definitely made a difference.

everyone's body is different and will respond and not respond to various things, so it's trial and error. i am sure others will join in with what worked for them. if you do a search i am pretty sure there is another thread in this forum on the same topic with other remedies.

hope you find what works for you soon! it certainly is freeing not to have periods, and once you are feeling better, you will enjoy it.

caramix3a 02-18-2012 08:40 PM

menopause update
Head over to Power-Surge, the portal for everything menopause. Very active discussion board with a lot of topics. But be careful - it can get depressing as so many people over there have literally been DERAILED by peri-menopause, menopause, and post-menopause - each stage of the transition having its own challenges. One has to kind of pick and choose what to read all of.
However, every woman is different in how her body handles this. A clue to how one will handle it oneself, look to one's mother or older sister, especially if one has the same lifestyle and dietary habits. But if one has been on a very health-conscious path that is very different from one's relatives, then one might not suffer the same stuff. Then there are the rare birds who hardly notice a thing, the vast majority that notice at least something or several things, and the smaller group that is indeed derailed.
Hope this helps!

Verity 02-19-2012 07:06 PM

Mar, I'm sorry you're having a hard time!

I turned 50 in November and the only symptom I see so far is shorter/less regular cycles. On the internet and elsewhere, "age 50" seems to be a shorthand for "menopausal," but it's not hitting here yet. I know it will happen sometime (obviously), but it's a weird waiting game. It's not as if my periods are useful anymore--I could kid myself until age 45 or so that I was still of childbearing age.

Are women who reached puberty late (I did--I was almost 15 when I had my first period) also supposed to reach menopause late?

2poodles 02-21-2012 06:11 PM


Originally Posted by Verity (Post 1890370)
Mar, I'm sorry you're having a hard time!

I turned 50 in November and the only symptom I see so far is shorter/less regular cycles. On the internet and elsewhere, "age 50" seems to be a shorthand for "menopausal," but it's not hitting here yet. I know it will happen sometime (obviously), but it's a weird waiting game. It's not as if my periods are useful anymore--I could kid myself until age 45 or so that I was still of childbearing age.

Are women who reached puberty late (I did--I was almost 15 when I had my first period) also supposed to reach menopause late?

Actually, I think it's supposed to be the opposite - late onset of puberty is associated with earlier menopause. At least that's my recollection....

curlypearl 02-21-2012 07:35 PM

You are correct, 2Poodles.

I took black cohosh and ate soy (which I detested) a lot when I first went through meno. Not sure if it helped, but I had a very easy time of it.

Mar, caffeine will trigger hot flashes, as will alcohol. It makes me shiver just to read about what you are going through. I hope it gets better!

Mar 02-23-2012 08:41 PM

Thanks everyone for the tips!
I will continue my search for solutions!

banjocurl 03-01-2012 09:03 PM

never did HRT--made it thru menopause ok with lots of exercise, took vit D and E and "menopause 1" multi--hot flashes were not too bad for me..good luck!! last period age 54.

RedCatWaves 03-02-2012 09:30 AM

No HRT here. I'm 18 months into my menopause (at age 48...50 now), and my hot flashes have dwindled substantially. I'm only having maybe 1 or 2 a week. Very managable. That might just be because it's winter though. I'm thinking they may come back more in the summer, as heat seemed to really exacerbate them last summer. We'll see. I've found I can ward off the flashes if I catch them early, before they have the chance to become a progressive vicious cycle of sweating and freezing. I have a multitude of gadgets to keep me cool if I feel one coming on. My kids laugh at me, but I keep a "menopause survival kit" in a small insulated lunch bag that I take with me most places. It has my battery-operated fan, a couple washcloths, cologne, and neck chillers in it. I have a "cooling pad" that I bought at the pharmacy, that I place under me when sleeping if I'm having a hot night. I shower or bathe EVERY night before bed (and again in the morning), because I sleep so much better if I'm clean and calm. Getting enough sleep seems to be crucial in avoiding excessive flashes. I get more when I'm tired, so I try not to be tired.

Gretchen 03-02-2012 11:10 AM

Have y'all read this book? It's stinkin' hilarious.

curlypearl 03-10-2012 05:17 PM

I love the picture of her hair!

jeepcurlygurl 03-10-2012 05:42 PM

Just went to ebay and bought it! Thanks for posting the info. Love the title and the story of her friend, and of course her hair!

valcave 03-10-2012 07:21 PM

Omg curlies! I turn 50 this year and no hot flashes yet. I have noticed so far fatigue (extreme) , mood , hair and skin changes! Have any of you tried bioidentical hormone replacement? I've seriously been thinking about giving it a try.

Sent from my PC36100 using CurlTalk App

Myrna 03-12-2012 07:14 AM

Hi, girlfriends. I am 60, and my last period was about 5 years ago. My doctor asked me when my last period was (at the time), and I was surprised to find it had been so long. She ran an FSH level, and announced "That's it! You're done". I asked her when I was going to have hot flashes. She laughed and said "You're not, you're one of the lucky ones". I was surprised as both my mom and my sister had them - bad. To date, I sometimes wake up in the night frequently, and I go from too warm to feeling cold very quickly. I cant remember names very well, but I dont know if that is new. The biggest issue for me is - I cant lose weight!! does anyone else have this issue, and has ANYTHING worked??

anonymous_22139 03-15-2012 08:40 AM

I had my last period just before my 50th birthday. I went it 'cold turkey,' basically not taking anything.

It was a piece of cake. I was so happy to be past PMS that a few hot flashes were nothing!

fitover40 03-15-2012 12:55 PM

It's been a year and a half since my last cycle (when I was 46). In the last 6 months major sleep issues, energy, hot flashes, hair/skin, memory, geez, you name it I feel like I have it. I thought that's how I was supposed to feel. Went in for my annual checkup and I think I sounded like a mad woman (probably from the lack of sleep), took some blood to check my levels. FSH is fine so not menopausal, but I had absolutely no Estrogen. Doc isn't sure why my ovaries aren't producing Estrogen anymore but is recommending to treat like menopause with HRT. I just want a decent night's sleep and the energy I used to have. Will see how it goes on the HRT. Both sisters were 53 before they stopped, not sure why I'm different. It seems most people just don't get how awful you can feel.

2poodles 03-17-2012 08:11 PM

I think I may be in menopause. Not real sure since I had a hysterectomy when I was 37. The doctor left my ovaries, though. I'm hopeful that I might be done since I'm about to turn 50 and my 48 y/o sister told me that her last period was 2 years ago.... And my mom finished up about age 48. I used to get hot flashes, but they haven't been bad lately. But without the evidence of periods stopping for over a year, it's hard to know for sure if I'm done.... Anyone else in a similar situation?

Cyanbobcat 03-17-2012 08:39 PM

I'll be 51 in a few months and my periods are becoming sporadic. For the past year they have been very heavy and painful :angry5:

I'm right there with Myrna... can't lose weight to save my life. I have an extra 10 right around the middle. I had the 'getting older' conversation with my old running buddy the other day. She is depressed. I told her that it appears to get better but I don't know that it does.

Here is how it appears to me... someone correct me if I'm wrong: women who are around 60 are "over" whining about the loss of youth. They have put on their big girl pants and gotten on with their lives. Right around 50 is when the signs of aging really start to creep up and slap you down. Accepting aging is something that occurs over the course of several years. Some of us might take longer than others. I'm struggling with my self image more than anything else. Periods be damned. My older sister has given up. She no longer does her hair and makeup on a daily basis... only for special occasions. I don't want to just surrender all but I don't want to fight it either. Isn't there a happy medium?

Sorry for the ramble. It's all very distressing. Menopause is the actual physical marker of aging but the mental part of it is just as real. Can anyone relate?

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