Lifestyle Columnist, Amanda Alexander

Hot flushes, mood swings, bloating and weight gain…headaches with burning tongue…digestive issues…insomnia, dizziness, anxiety and fatigue these are not a few of my favourite things. Apparently there are 34 irritable symptoms signalling the menopause¹ ².

This conundrum normally starts happening in women from the age of 40 and can last up to 12 years². Also a high level of sucicide happens among women between the ages of 45 to 49 years old. According to the figures from the Office of National Statistics “there was a significant increase from 2017 (6.6 deaths per 100,000; a total of 154 deaths) to 2018 (9.2 deaths per 100,000; a total of 211 deaths)”³. Floresco’s Menopause, Mental Health and Suicide report mentions that “The Samaritans in 2018 showed that the age range for women with the highest suicide rate per 100,000 in the UK is between 50-54 years old, again, right round the age of the menopause for many women”4. Recently the TV celebrity Carol Vorderman, admitted that she suffered suicidal thoughts during the menopause4.

With these disparaging figures and, though there are remedies such as ‘Hormone Replacement Therapy’ (HRT) (available at a cost), the above reports demonstrate that more help may be needed to assist some women going through this traumatic time.  Many women suffer in silence as they cannot afford to pay for HRT, a matter that the MP for Swansea Carolyn Harris is addressing before Parliament. She’s placing a ‘Bill’ before the house requesting to eliminate NHS charges for HRT thus making it free to women, (to date we’re still awaiting the results as to the outcome of that debate). This is definitely a step in the right direction in  supporting women’s health.

No longer are we living in the dark ages where discussing the biological changes going on inside a woman’s body was taboo, in my opinion the time has come where it’s pertinent that we all educate ourselves on such matters.

The Menopause Support Guide provides very helpful information on how to support the lady in your life going through the menopause, it explains particularly to men what menopause is, it’s effects and how they can help their loved ones..

As a lady who’s been through this I found eating healthy, exercising and my faith helped me immensely. I also went for walks, satisfied myself with a monthly intake of sweets and chocolates, I thoroughly enjoyed my guilty pleasures, and I’m pleased to say I’m now on the other side of the menopause without ever having to take HRT.

In conclusion, as dealing with any health situation do not carry this burden alone, there is free help available click the links below and please get the help you need. Furthermore, see if there’s a women’s menopause support group that you can attend  or even start your own if there isn’t one in your local community. This is a global issue and we as women must come together to help one another through it.

 Until next time, remember you are beautiful and wonderfully made – With love Amanda x          

Amanda Alexander – Founder of Elect Lady Ministries, Female Dignity & Amanda Alexander Productions

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¹ What Are The 34 Symptoms of Menopause? – MPowered Women

² Menopause – Symptoms – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

³ Suicides in the UK – Office for National Statistics (ons.gov.uk)

4 Menopause, Mental Health and Suicide – Floresco Training & Coaching

5 Menopause – Treatment – NHS (www.nhs.uk)