5 Tips for Managing Perimenopause Symptoms

Back in sixth-grade health class, you learned all about menstruation, and what you could expect from that exciting (if slightly scary) change of life. So, why didn’t anyone tell you about perimenopause and menopause?

Perimenopause is a period of hormonal changes that takes place approximately 4-10 years before your period stops for good. After you haven’t menstruated for more than 12 consecutive months, you’re in menopause.

Although information about these important stages in your life cycle is growing, you may have been taken by surprise when you hit your 30s or 40s and suddenly felt like you couldn’t wake up in the morning no matter how many cups of coffee you had. You’re tired all the time, you can’t concentrate, and you gained weight without changing your diet or routine.

Larisa Litvinova, MD, a holistic internal medicine physician in Montclair, New Jersey, knows how challenging life can be when your body slows its estrogen production and throws your hormones into a tailspin. As you head toward menopause, you may experience a range of unsettling symptoms, including:

Hot flashes
Night sweats
Weight gain
Hair loss
Acne outbreaks
Erratic periods
Dry vagina
Decreased libido

The hormonal shift also causes you to lose bone at a higher rate, putting you at greater risk for osteopenia and osteoporosis. As a holistic physician, Dr. Litvinova recommends the following steps to help manage the symptoms of perimenopause:

1. Change your exercise.

Running for miles at a time or exercising for hours causes your body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol, which also triggers your body to retain fat. If you’re having trouble getting rid of bulges, switch to a burst-intensity routine. Exercise at full capacity for one minute, then cool down (while still moving) for two.

If running bores you, try:

Jumping rope
Dancing
Climbing stairs
Cycling

You might also enjoy sports such as tennis and volleyball that require brief bursts of energy. Keep your bones strong and get Vitamin D by taking a daily walk outside for at least 20-30 minutes. Resistance training, such as lifting weights, not only puts healthy stress on your bones but keeps you from losing muscle, too.

2. Supplement your nutrition.

If you aren’t already on a whole-foods diet, add more fresh fruits and vegetables so that your cells get the nourishment they need during this time of transition. Leafy green vegetables are particularly important as sources of calcium. You may also need to take a calcium supplement as well as Vitamin D and Vitamin K to prevent or halt osteopenia or osteoporosis.

Dr. Litvinova goes over your present diet with you and takes blood work to identify any deficiencies you may have. She custom designs dietary recommendations and supplements to match your unique needs.

3. Optimize your sleep.

Hot flashes and night sweats can wake you up and interrupt restorative rest. Your body needs sleep to function at its best. To wind down at night, stop using blue-light devices, such as phones and laptops, several hours before bed or use them only on the yellow-light nighttime settings.

Increase your sleep hygiene by setting regular bedtime and wake-up times, and stick to them even on the weekends. Avoid exercising, eating a heavy meal, or drinking alcohol within a few hours before you go to bed.

In your bedroom, block all sources of light by with blackout curtains and by unplugging unneeded devices and lights. Lower the temperature of your room to about 60-68 degrees. Dr. Litvinova may also recommend homeopathic treatments to control your night sweats and hot flashes, so you can sleep more soundly.

4. Try homeopathy.

Homeopathy is a long-standing health practice that’s based on the principles of using just one treatment at a time, administering the lowest dose possible, and curing “like with like” -- which means that a small amount of what ails you can also hold its cure. The FDA has approved homeopathy as a medical treatment since 1938. Dr. Litvinova is one of the few medical physicians in the world who’s also a certified homeopathy practitioner.

All of Dr. Litvinova’s homeopathic treatments are derived from natural plant, animal, and mineral sources. Because of the small doses involved, side effects are nearly nonexistent with homeopathy. Dr. Litvinova recommends therapies based on the results of physical examination and the type of perimenopause symptoms you have.
5. Balance your hormones.

Just because Mother Nature’s thrown you off balance doesn’t mean you have to stay there. Dr. Litvinova offers bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) made of plants, such as soy and yam, that mimic the structure of your own hormones.

Your BHRT is tailored to complement and supplement your own hormonal makeup. The hormone molecules are biocompatible, so the chance of side effects is minimized.

5. Get help

You don’t need to suffer as you move into your next phase of life. Get help with managing perimenopausal symptoms by calling us today or booking an appointment with Dr. Litvinova using our online form.

 

 

 

 

 

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