Menopause Awareness Month
October is Menopause Awareness Month which aims to raise awareness of the many issues women face and improve how their health and well-being can be supported. The 18th is the official awareness day, so look out for news and posts you might find useful and share with friends and family. My journey into reflexology started with fertility (nearly 20 years ago!) and as I’ve progressed through my career, and aged, I’ve naturally veered towards helping women navigate their hormones in the middle years, and started additional training in the subject a few years ago.
In 2021 you may have seen I added another workshop to my repertoire…Facial Reflexology for a Merry Perimenopause. This is an adaption of my previous women’s health workshop and now includes information about the hormones involved during perimenopause, the symptoms they may cause and self-care reflexology and massage to ease symptoms and give a healthy glow, whilst empowering women to take control of their health.
My personal journey into perimenopause has begun and currently feels under control using these techniques but the brain fog (or brain farts as I prefer to call them…when you walk into a room and can’t remember why you’re there or stop mid-sentence because the words just leave your brain) and tiredness, can be relentless. Not to mention the unwarranted anxiety and self-doubt! The night sweats a few days before my period are also most unpleasant. But here’s a short video of one of my favourite hot flush first aid techniques for you to try (my first attempt at TikTok!):
The above technique is good to use in the moment but if you’re suffering with uncomfortable power surges, try the following tips too:
- Dress in layers, so that you can remove clothing when a hot flash starts.
- Avoid foods and beverages that may cause hot flashes, like spicy foods, alcohol, coffee, tea, and other hot beverages.
- Drink a glass of cold water or fruit juice when a hot flash starts.
- Keep a thermos of ice water or an ice pack next to your bed during the night.
- Use cotton sheets, lingerie, and clothing that allow your skin to breathe.
- Keep a diary or record of your symptoms to find what might trigger your hot flushes
One of the reasons reflexology is so effective at helping during perimenopause is that it lowers the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is the enemy of the perimenopause as it literally robs the body of precious oestrogen and progesterone. Before menopause, we have optimal levels of O & P but as these levels start to decline, we become more susceptible to the negative effects of cortisol.
It’s important to try and reduce stress in all areas of your life. Take time DAILY to focus on your needs, reflect on your lifestyle and be honest with yourself about lifestyle and changes that may need to be made:
- What’s adding to your stress – who, what, when?
- How’s your diet? What can be improved? Plant based, fresh, real food is best
- Learn to say NO THANKS…it may be hard for people pleasers, but you might find it quite empowering
- Exercise regularly – walking in the fresh air is great
- Create better sleep habits – reduce screen time, dark room, avoid caffeine and alcohol
- Do something you enjoy and HAVE FUN!
Modern living is often very stressful for multitasking women with jobs, children, teenagers and parents to look after and although it’s easier said than done, try and get a healthy balance. Remember to look after yourself, because…
If you’d like to book onto a workshop; have a 1:1 session or book a treatment to learn more, please get in touch. In its essence, reflexology is fairly simple to do on yourself – it’s complex but not complicated and with a little guidance, you can enjoy many health and wellbeing benefits with self-care techniques. See details at the end of this blog of a free mini workshop later in October.