A subject on the basic issues of menopause and sleep, the symptoms, effects, and most effective treatments.
Midlife for most women comes with several psychological and mental issues, including sleeping. And many with sleep disorder will likely express it till they reach menopause. A handful of women have revealed how menopause affected them and their sleep, as well as how they coped with it.
Symptoms of menopause and Sleep Disruption
Not all women experienced sleep disruption. While some were adversely affected by a sleepless night, others were able to sleep really well. But, most women don’t sleep well when they got to menopause.
The major causes of this condition include:
Hot Flushes and Sweat
The major cause of sleeplessness is hot flushes and sweat. These waking up periods were characterized by an alternating feeling of cold and heat.
Women who experience hot sweat hardly enjoy their rest. They’ll have to do all in their capacity to get a good night sleep and lower their body temperature.
Other symptoms that influence sleeping during menopause includes
- Restless leg syndrome
- Palpitation of the heart
- Emotional turmoil etc.
While some women slept poorly just before this period, others don’t sleep at most times during theirs.
We cannot always attribute the cause of sleep disruption to menopause.
Worries, concerns, pains, medications, environments etc., are the factors that can disrupt sleep – you’ll be getting more details on abc.com/afraid-to-sleep. Also, for some women, poor sleep patterns that arose early in life could resurface during menopause.
Effects of Poor Sleep patterns During Menopause
Reports from women who suffered from lack of sleep showed the sleep issues they faced during menopause affected the whole areas of the life, directly or indirectly. Their work, family and other relationship suffered as they found it difficult to cope.
Most women even feel more tired as they tried to get along with the demands of the everyday job. Thus, after each day, they become stressed and find it difficult to deal with some of these necessary activities.
Most Effective Ways to get more Sleep
Reinforce Your Sleep Schedule
One of the simplest ways to overcome sleeplessness is sticking to a sleep cycle. This will help your body fight any other message or urge which resist the normal sleeping pattern. It is however important that you maintain a steady sleep pattern and avoid oversleeping during days off work.
Forming a sleep pattern isn’t difficult, especially if you’ve not made one already. You will reap the benefits for life.
Think of short-term HRT
Research has shown that Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for women can make them sleep better, although they still don’t know the reasons, some assume it is because it reduces hot flush.
To reduce the side effect of HRT, these experts recommend you don’t go on this therapy for long-term or daily use.
Some experts opined that HRT is not for all women at menopause, but about 20% of these women will have a positive feedback.
Work with a therapist
Booking an average of 9 weeks with a certified cognitive behavioral therapist will help you with sleep strategies. The strategies made will fit your body requirement and address all issues.
However, women who wake up in the middle of the night might find talking to a psychiatrist helpful.
Try Sleep break
This is suitable after the nights when the hormones in charge of your sleep and wake cycle are acting up. I’ll advise you sleep as early as 4 pm to get all the sleep you have lost. While you might not get all the sleep you lost, it will surprise you at how refreshed you’ll be.
Even at work, taking a 10 minutes nap will not hurt. Resting your head on the desk for a moment will count.
Opt for alternative treatment
If you are reluctant to use Estrogen, discuss with your doctor. It reduces hot flushes that affect sleep. Doctors prescribe it for breast cancer patients undergoing active therapy. It will reduce hot flush and make you drowsy.
Wick away the problem
Long jeans are not advisable if your sleep is disrupted by hot flushes. Gym shots and athletes’ T-shirt can help wick away moisture – you could use them as pajamas. While they will not stop hot flushes, they will help stop it from being a nuisance that disrupts your sleep.
Try health products
Chillow – a pillow with water that helps keep your body temperature down. While it will not stop hot flushes, it will keep the intensity down, hence you have a good night sleep. You could also use other products like weighted blanket and pillow.
Reduce your Room temperature
By keeping the temperature of your room down, you alert your body on time for bed. Thus, it’s important to make conscious effort to keep the bedroom temperature down. While hot flushes will not disappear, it will be less disruptive to your sleep.
Having a hot bath can also help keep your body temperature down. While your body temperature goes up in the bath, your body responds to the heat by bringing down your body temperature.
Asides, experts recommend that if you don’t have premenopausal dryness that causes painful intercourse, it’s good to have a quickie. While a lot of women in this category mentioned they don’t have time for sex, sex is a good sleep inducer. It’s, however, important to protect yourself against pregnancy as it will mess up your sleep pattern.
Tone it down
In premenopausal women, a balanced sleep and wake cycle can be encouraged by toning down a jumpy sympathetic nervous system. This is where tai chi, yoga, prayer, meditation, biofeedback etc. will help. In summary, any activity that will help keep you in peace and cultivate a sense of balance is highly recommended.
Consult a Sleep Doctor
Should your sleep disorder come with breathing difficulty, restless leg, it might be time to talk to a sleep doc. Your primary care doctor will be helpful in referring you to a sleep center where you will be tested, diagnosed and treated.
Of a truth, menopause comes with sleeping several disorders, but these issues are not always associated with ‘menopause’. In case you find yourself in such shoes, confirm from a medical practitioner to know the next step to take.
If you keenly follow the above sleeping procedures, then you can be sure of a good night sleep.