5 Natural Menopause Treatments: Finding Relief Through a Holistic Approach

Explore the world of natural menopause treatments. From dietary changes to herbal remedies, discover effective ways to ease symptoms and enhance well-being.

Published Sep 05 2023 5 min read

Menopause is a natural and inevitable phase in a woman's life, yet it frequently brings along discomforting symptoms. For some, it will be hot flashes, mood swings, and sleep disturbances, and for others, it may be plummeting libido, hair thinning, and migraines.

While there are medical options available, such as hormone replacement therapy and prescription medications, these are often considered a last resort due to potential side effects and long-term health considerations. Fortunately, there are a plethora of natural alternatives that can help you navigate this new chapter with grace and vitality.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into natural treatments that can transform your menopause journey into a more comfortable and empowering experience.

Stages of Menopause

Menopause is a complex and multifaceted process that unfolds over several years. It's not a singular event but a series of stages, each with its unique characteristics and challenges. Understanding these stages can provide valuable insights into what to expect and how to manage the transition effectively. 

Below, we explore the three main stages:

1. Perimenopause

Perimenopause is the transitional phase that leads up to menopause. It can last anywhere from a few months to several years.

  • Age Range: Usually begins in a woman's 40s, but it can start earlier.
  • Hormonal Changes: Gradual decrease in estrogen and progesterone production, leading to fluctuations in hormone levels. Since the ovaries also contribute to the body's testosterone production, there may be a slight decline in this hormone during perimenopause. However, the impact is generally quite minimal in comparison.
  • Symptoms: Irregular menstrual cycles, hot flashes, mood swings, sleep disturbances, vaginal dryness, migraines, and fluctuations in cholesterol levels. As well as, a decrease in testosterone may affect libido, muscle strength, and overall vitality.
  • Management: Lifestyle adjustments, hormone therapy, or other medical interventions may be considered to manage symptoms.

2. Menopause

Menopause refers to the stage when a woman has not had a menstrual period for 12 consecutive months. 

  • Age Range: Most commonly occurs between ages 51 and 52, but this can vary.
  • Hormonal Changes: The ovaries stop releasing eggs and significantly reduce their production of estrogen. There is also a decline in the levels of progesterone.
  • Symptoms: Continuation or intensification of perimenopausal symptoms, along with potential long-term health considerations.
  • Management: In addition to the approaches outlined in the perimenopausal section, it's also advisable to undergo regular health screenings and take preventive measures for long-term well-being.

3. Postmenopause

Postmenopause refers to the years following menopause.

  • Hormonal Changes: Estrogen levels remain low. 
  • Symptoms: Many symptoms may ease, but health risks related to the loss of estrogen, such as osteoporosis and heart disease, may increase. 
  • Management: Regular medical check-ups, adopting healthy lifestyle habits, and monitoring for chronic health conditions are crucial.

Understanding the Symptoms of Menopause

Let's delve deeper into the wide array of symptoms that may accompany this natural transition.

Physical Symptoms

Menopause brings about a series of physical changes that can significantly impact a woman's daily life. From sudden temperature fluctuations to shifts in metabolism, the physical symptoms are diverse and can vary in intensity among different individuals. Here's a closer look at some of the most common:

Hot Flashes and Night Sweats

It is marked by sudden, intense sensations of heat, frequently accompanied by perspiration, mainly affecting the face, neck, and chest.

  • Causes: The exact cause is unknown, but it's believed to be related to hormonal fluctuations affecting the body's temperature regulation.
  • Management: Lifestyle changes such as dressing in layers, avoiding triggers like spicy foods and caffeinated drinks, and using fans can help. For some women, medical treatments like hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or non-hormonal options such as certain antidepressants may also provide relief.

Vaginal Dryness

It is characterized by the thinning, drying, and inflammation of the vaginal walls.

  • Causes: Reduced estrogen levels lead to decreased moisture and elasticity in the vaginal tissues.
  • Management: Over-the-counter lubricants, estrogen creams, or other prescribed treatments can alleviate symptoms.

Sleep Disturbances

It is defined by challenges in both falling asleep and maintaining restful sleep.

  • Causes: Hormonal changes, hot flashes, and anxiety related to menopause can disrupt sleep patterns.
  • Management: Good sleep and relaxation techniques like deep breathing or progressive muscle relaxation before bed may prove helpful. If these approaches aren't effective, medical interventions such as sleep medications or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) may be considered.

Weight Gain

This refers to the heightened accumulation of fat, especially in the abdominal area.

  • Causes: Variations in metabolism, hormone levels, and lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise.
  • Management: Healthy eating, regular physical activity, and consultation with healthcare professionals for personalized guidance may be necessary.

Emotional and Cognitive Symptoms

The transition into menopause is not only physical but also deeply emotional and cognitive. These signs are often intertwined with physical changes, creating a complex web of challenges that require understanding and care.

Below, we explore the most common emotional symptoms that women experience:

Mood Swings

These are swift fluctuations in mood, encompassing symptoms like irritability, anxiety, or bouts of sadness.

  • Causes: Hormonal fluctuations, sleep disturbances, and the emotional impact of menopausal changes.
  • Management: Support from friends and family and counseling.

Memory and Concentration

Difficulties with memory, focus, and cognitive function may arise.

  • Causes: The underlying causes are complex and may include hormonal fluctuations, lack of sleep, and stress.
  • Management: Brain exercises, stress reduction techniques, and medical evaluation if symptoms are severe.

Decreased Libido

Diminished interest or desire for sexual activity may become common.

  • Causes: Declining estrogen and testosterone levels, emotional factors, and physical changes such as vaginal dryness.
  • Management: Open communication with partners, treatments for underlying physical issues, and counseling if needed.

5 Natural Remedies for Menopause 

In the journey through menopause, finding comfort and balance is vital. While conventional treatments have their place, many women are turning to natural remedies to ease symptoms and enhance well-being. Here's a closer look at this innovative approach, along with some of the most promising holistic alternatives:

1. Sexual Wellness Devices

Sexual wellness devices are emerging as empowering options that can help with intimate challenges. These devices not only enhance pleasure but also provide therapeutic benefits, aligning with the body's needs during this transition. By focusing on enjoyment, connection, and individuality, they offer a fresh, non-medicinal approach to menopause treatments.

MysteryVibe is leading the charge with sexual wellness devices for menopause. A prime example of this is the Crescendo 2 vibrator, as its bendable design allows it to mold to different body shapes, providing tailored pleasure experiences. It aims to elevate sexual health and pleasure while mitigating pain barriers from circumstances or age, such as menopause and childbirth. 

Operable through a smart app and resistant to water, Crescendo 2 promotes sexual exploration and well-being, making it suitable for a wide range of users.

This is not all, MysteryVibe also offers Legato, the world's first flexible labia and vulva vibrator. This device is specifically designed to enhance sexual arousal, a vital aspect that can be affected during menopause. With 9 in 10 women needing external stimulation to get aroused, Legato's thoughtful design ensures continuous stimulation, and can even be used during penetration. Its features, including adaptability to any body shape or size and quality craftsmanship, offer a holistic way to navigate the transition.

Together, Crescendo 2 and Legato represent a new frontier in natural alternatives, emphasizing an all-encompassing approach that resonates with the body's natural wisdom. 

2. Dietary Changes

The foods we consume play a vital role in how our bodies function, especially during significant life transitions like menopause. Making certain dietary choices can align with the body's changing needs, offering support and relief from common symptoms. Here's how:

  • Plant-Based Diets: Incorporating a variety of plant-based foods can be a strategic approach during this transitional time. Rich in phytoestrogens, compounds that mimic estrogen in the body, plants like soy, flaxseeds, and whole grains may alleviate hot flashes and contribute to overall wellness.
  • Healthy Proteins: Protein is a building block for muscles and tissues. Including a variety of protein sources such as nuts, seeds, beans, legumes, and lean meats can support body composition, providing the energy and strength needed during menopause.
  • Hydration: Staying well-hydrated is essential at any life stage. However, it is particularly important during this period, as hormonal fluctuations can lead to dryness in various parts of the body. Drinking six to eight cups of water daily is a simple yet effective way to support overall hydration, aiding digestion and skin health.

3. Herbal Supplements

In the search for natural remedies to ease menopause symptoms, herbal supplements have become a popular choice. These plant-derived compounds offer a gentle approach, often working in harmony with our systems. 

While scientific research on herbal remedies is ongoing, many women find relief through these options. Here's a closer look at some commonly used herbal supplements for menopause:

  • Licorice Root: Known for its sweet flavor, licorice root has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. It may relieve hot flashes and improve sexual well-being by replicating the effects of estrogen. A study published in the Iranian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research (1) suggests that licorice root can also reduce the frequency and duration of hot flashes, making it a valuable option for those seeking natural relief.
  • Anise: Anise, with its distinct aroma, is known to contain phytoestrogens. It has been studied for its potential to reduce the length and severity of hot flashes. Incorporating anise into the diet or taking it as a supplement may provide a gentle way to ease them.
  • Fennel: Fennel's aromatic seeds are not only a culinary delight but also a possible aid for menopause. Research published in the Journal of Menopausal Medicine (2) indicates that fennel can improve mental clarity and assist with vaginal atrophy, a condition where the vaginal walls become thinner and drier. Its estrogen-like effects may contribute to these benefits, offering a natural approach.
  • Black Cohosh: Black cohosh has a long history of use for women's health issues, including menopause. While results are mixed, a study published in the Journal of Education and Health Promotion (3) suggests that black cohosh may help with hot flashes and mood disturbances like depression. Its potential effects on serotonin receptors could explain these benefits, though more research is needed to fully understand its mechanisms.

4. Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques

The menopausal transition is not only a physical process but an emotional and spiritual one as well. As the body undergoes significant shifts, the mind and spirit seek balance and harmony. Mindfulness and relaxation techniques such as yoga and acupuncture offer a holistic approach to care, addressing the whole person rather than isolated symptoms. Here's a closer look:

  • Yoga: Yoga is more than a physical exercise; it's a practice that unites the body, mind, and spirit. Many women turn to yoga for its potential to reduce stress, improve flexibility, and enhance wellness. Specific poses and breathing exercises may alleviate menopausal symptoms, improve sleep quality, and foster a sense of inner calm. 
  • Acupuncture: Acupuncture, a key component of traditional Chinese medicine, involves inserting thin needles into specific points on the body to balance energy flow. Some women seek acupuncture for symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, and mood swings. 

5. Lifestyle Changes

The lifestyle choices made during this period can significantly influence the experience. Two key areas that often require attention during this transformative phase are exercise and sleep.

Exercise

Regular physical activity is essential at any stage of life, but it takes on added importance during menopause. As the metabolism changes, maintaining muscle function and bone density becomes crucial. Exercise can:

  • Increase Muscle Strength: Strength training helps preserve muscle mass, supporting mobility and balance.
  • Enhance Cardiovascular Health: Aerobic exercises like walking, cycling, or swimming promote heart health.
  • Improve Mood: Physical activity releases endorphins, the "feel-good" hormones, which can alleviate mood swings and depression.
  • Support Weight Management: A combination of strength and aerobic exercises can assist with weight control.
  • Promote Bone Health: Weight-bearing exercises help maintain bone density, reducing the risk of osteoporosis.

Quality Sleep

Sleep is a foundational aspect of health, and ensuring restful slumber becomes particularly vital during this period. Hormonal shifts can disrupt sleep patterns, leading to insomnia or restless nights. Here's how to foster quality sleep:

  • Create a Sleep-Friendly Environment: A cool, dark, and quiet room can enhance sleep quality.
  • Establish a Routine: Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day helps regulate the internal clock.
  • Avoid Stimulants Before Bed: Limiting caffeine, alcohol, and screen time in the evening can promote quality sleep.
  • Consider Professional Guidance: If disturbances persist, consulting with healthcare providers can provide personalized solutions.

Conclusion 

Menopause is a significant transition, but it doesn't have to be a struggle. By embracing natural remedies and making mindful lifestyle changes, you can navigate this phase with ease and empowerment. Whether it's adjusting your diet, exploring sexual medical devices, or engaging in relaxation techniques, the path to relief is within your reach. 

Start your journey towards a more comfortable menopause today by consulting with healthcare professionals and exploring the options that resonate with you.

FAQs

Can a woman enjoy sex after menopause?

Yes, a woman can absolutely enjoy sex after menopause. While hormonal changes may affect libido and comfort, exploring new methods of stimulation through sexual wellness devices can enhance the experience.

How can you make sex more pleasurable during menopause?

To make sex more pleasurable during menopause, consider incorporating sexual wellness devices such as Crescendo 2 and Legato, designed to stimulate and enhance arousal. Pairing these with a gentle lubricant like Pjur Aqua can create a more comfortable and pleasurable experience, embracing the body's changing needs.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3832176/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26617271/#:~:text=Conclusion%3A%20According%20to%20results%20of,conditions%20occurring%20among%20postmenopausal%20women.
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5868221/

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