Oct 15, 2020
Our hormones have for many years been subjected to shameful jibes however, they are immensely powerful and the driving force behind so much of who we are, hence the title of this episode. The thing is, they also change as we transition into the next phase of our lives around our mid/late 40s and when they begin to change, we can find the impact on our emotional, mental and physical health to be a huge shock to the system if we aren't informed about what to expect.
If we can understand what’s going on, and manage the change with support, the next phase of life has the opportunity to be even more fulfilling and wonderful. The trouble is, we often switch off to its inevitability and think that its nothing to worry about until the hot flushes start which couldn’t be further from the truth! Just like achy joints, osteoporosis, brittle bones, and forgetfulness are NOT just an inevitable sign of ageing, they are all connected to hormone change which we can do so much about when we actually understand what is going on within our body. It actually starts in your early 40s so it’s important to know what to look out for, hot flushes are much further down the line so in this episode we literally list the lot!
The trouble is, until recently, none of this has been talked about, menopause has been laden with shame, guilt and misunderstanding. The symptoms are way beyond what we have always thought and so when you know what to look out for, you are far more likely to be able to navigate this next phase of your life successfully and that’s what we are talking about in this episode, the symptoms to be looking out for.
Davina McCall was on Loose Women the other day and said how awful the menopause had been for her because she never knew, because no one had ever told her what to expect – and that is the case for nearly everyone …until now, partly thanks to my guest this week, Diane Danzebrink who has been central to this becoming a national conversation and raising an army of women who have said enough is enough, this needs to be understood and addressed properly. Diane even took the conversation right into the houses of parliament and lobbied for change, successfully - she is a hero!
As women, we often pride ourselves on getting on with things and that’s all very well but in “just getting on with it” we are actually denying ourselves of the support that we could really benefit from, but even worse, we are allowing the stigma to continue because we are stigmatising it ourselves by saying that we SHOULD just get on with it.
So, we can either arm ourselves with information, or we can exacerbate the issue. We have had to cover up and keep quiet about this significant functional change in our bodies for generations, for the longest time women were just seen as the child bearers and once they were done bearing and raising children, they should be put out to graze and quietly fade away – a disgraceful concept today. The life expectancy for women used to be mid 50 but now there’s an entire life to be had beyond our biologically productive years, we have much more life ahead of us but it can be dramatically effected by hormone deficiency when the body begins to change if we aren't supported correctly.
In this episode, I am joined by Diane Danzebrink, founder of the menopause support campaign and the driving force behind the #makemenopausematter movement to talk about what to look out for and the list is quite a lot to swallow –
The list is quite a shock to the system when you realise the effect that hormone change can have on our bodies but as you will hear Diane say, the more we talk about it, the more we normalise it. So please share and post away, use #makemenopausematter and please sign the petition because it is vital that education is increased particularly for GPs.
If you’ve not yet heard episode 72, a beginners guide to the menopause and HRT with Dr Zoe Hodson, she talked about how GPs are barely trained AT ALL on the menopause or HRT and that is often why so many women are stranded with their symptoms, just feeling like their life and body is falling apart, when actually so much of what they’re going through is manageable – remember our hormones are amazing things, they are NOTHING to be ashamed of, they are PART of being a woman and ESSENTIAL to life – it’s crazy that we’ve had to suffer in silence for so long, and for many, it really is suffering, for years. Please don’t let that be you, and please let’s not let our children have to go through the same
Also if you’ve not listened to Episode 72, here’s the link to my chat with Dr Zoe Hodson “A Beginners Guide to Menopause and HRT” and remember to subscribe so you don’t miss next week’s episode on managing mental health during this very important part of our lives.