Clarifying Menopause

Women are amazing beings.  We navigate our lives through changing, often raging cycles of hormones. We progress from the onset of menstruation, to perhaps including a journey of motherhood, and then to a finale of menopause.  Each one of these stages is a continuum with ongoing changes, some with obvious starts and stops. These changes are often described as “symptoms” and are so common that many women feel that they just need to ‘power through’ it without knowing that there are resources to help available. 

The term “Menopause” is an example of a hormone change that is a hard stop.  For most women, menopause is defined as 12 months since a woman’s last menstruation. For some women, menopause is defined as the onset of vasomotor symptoms due to an abrupt lack of estrogen due to medial reasons. In either case, menopause officially ends a woman’s reproductive years. Why is ONE DAY so hard and so challenging for many women?  Fluctuations in hormones that women experience leading up (perimenopause) and following (post menopause) can make the process life changing.  Most women ride this rollercoaster from ages around 45 to 55 years of age.   

Women who are experiencing menopausal changes have access to many healthcare providers and resources which can provide knowledge and tools allow women to take charge, leading to Your Path to Improved Health.  Physiotherapy plays a key role in managing many changes of menopause, however; women need to recognize that there are many other resources where evidence shows positive results for women during this period of their lives. 

Common Changes in Menopause

During this continuum of peri, post-menopause and the official one day of menopause, challenges for women include: 

  • Hot Flashes / Night Sweats (vasomotor changes) 
  • Brain Fog, Mood Swings, Increased feelings of anxiety or stress (cognitive changes and mental health changes) 
  • Sleep Disturbances 
  • Vaginal Dryness, Decreased sexual intimacy desire 
  • Increased or new incontinence, Pelvic pain, Prolapse (pelvic floor functional decline) 
  • Changes in Body weight/distribution
  • Changes in self-body images 
  • Dramatic silent bone loss or Osteoporosis 
  • Heart Disease

Common Questions and Concerns

Are you carrying around handheld fans and a change of shirts to manage hot flashes? Does your focus change at work when you feel the “heat” come on? 

Are you simply and literally tired of not getting a good night’s sleep? Does this leave you irritable with your spouse, family or work colleagues?  Often many women report that their lack of sleep has lowered ability to “think”, multitask, feel productive and to be capable of managing their typical day to day routines. 

Have you noticed a decrease in your sexual drive secondary to dryness, pain or poor body image and/or weight gain?  Are you avoiding activity because of increasing episodes of incontinence, pelvic pain or prolapse?  Is this leading to you just opting out of social events and becoming sedentary? 

Are you normally interested in preventative health but are unaware as to where to start to prevent diseases related to menopause, like Osteoporosis and Heart Disease? 

Treatment to support Menopause

We are here to help AND connect you to others that can support the challenges of Menopause through our Menopause collective. 

Women managing menopause can take advantage of their resourcefulness, they can dedicate time for themselves, and they can use their own clarity and drive to achieve the end goal of simply feeling better and more like themselves! 

Our team of Registered Physiotherapists is a critical part of your team.  We work alongside many other providers like your Family Doctor or Specialist, Registered Social Workers and Psychotherapists, Registered Dieticians, Naturopathic Doctors, Occupational Therapists and Fitness Trainers to support women throughout the continuum of peri, menopause and post menopause transition.   

EPA and GWHA have a history of developing programs from sound evidence-based research, giving our clients the reassurance that the services and products that we recommend are expected to make positive change. 

Comprehensive care is delivered in our welcoming environment to support women, where we take the time to hear your whole story. We offer private individualized one on one treatment so that you have the time with your health team members.  Our team works hard to provide offer convenient appointment times to work around your lifestyle. Our providers offer extended office hours including early mornings and evenings, as well as virtual care opportunities.    We continue to advocate for women and work together with their team of healthcare professionals which may include family doctors, specialists and other allied health.