Your Wake-Up Call for a Good Night's Sleep
Dayton, OH (August 5th, 2011) —
Oh, what I would give to get a good night's sleep! I hear this a lot from my patients. It's not unusual for women to have problems sleeping, and the situation often worsens as menopause approaches. Hormonal changes that begin in the 40s and early 50s can wreak havoc with your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
As many as 85% of menopausal women experience hot flashes and night sweats that awaken the brain and make it difficult to settle back into sleep. And with more and more research showing how important sleep is to the long-term well-being of body, mind and spirit, it's important to do what you can to preserve those precious hours of rejuvenating shut-eye.
If menopausal symptoms are robbing you of the rest you need to live a full and productive life, talk to your healthcare provider about what you can do to increase your chances for a good night's sleep. Here are four areas to consider:
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
When using HRT to relieve symptoms of menopause, we recommend taking the smallest possible dose over the shortest period of time. Bio-identical hormones (estrogen, progesterone and testosterone) can be calibrated to meet the specific needs of the patient. HRT is not suitable for everyone, however. Your physician can explain the pros and cons of this approach.
Yoga, paced breathing, acupuncture or Shiatsu (like acupuncture but without needles), and good old-fashioned exercise will help your body relax and make it easier to fall asleep. Just don't exercise too close to bedtime!
Medications and Supplements
Your healthcare provider may prescribe medication to help you sleep. Be sure you understand how to recognize potential side effects.
Some research has suggested that dietary supplements such as soy(phytoestrogen), black cohash, valerian and melatonin may help relieve hot flashes and/or promote sleep. The scientific evidence is not strong enough, however, to prove these claims. Keep in mind that unlike medications, dietary supplements are not regulated or controlled by the Food and Drug Administration. Talk to your healthcare provider before you take any of these products.
Do everything in your power to increase your odds for good sleep by creating a positive environment.
- Wear loose-fitting cotton nightclothes.
- Make your room dark, quiet and as cool as you can.
- Avoid eating spicy food and drinking alcohol before going to bed.
- Keep cold water and a cloth near your bed so you can pat yourself to cool down.
- Bedroom for sleep and sex only-no TV.
- Avoid arousing activity just before bed
- Relaxing ritual at bedtime.
- Avoid certain medications/or take in morning
- Restrict awake time in bed
- Exercise earlier in the day
- Eliminate nicotine
- Reduce caffeine
- Avoid daytime naps
Lifestages – Samaritan Centers For Women
Lifestages – Samaritan Centers For Women is a nationally recognized medical practice focused on clinical excellence, technological innovation and a comprehensive approach to health care for women of all ages. With a group of 8 physicians, 4 midwives and a nurse practitioner, they provide obstetric, gynecological and health promotion services, that focus on giving patients the quality care they want and deserve. Lifestages — Samaritan Centers For Women has five convenient locations in Dayton, Englewood, Huber Heights and Trotwood, along with our newest location in Centerville.
To make an appointment or to get additional information about Lifestages, please call the office at (937) 277-8988 or 1-888-808-1016 or visit www.lifestagescenters.com
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