Treatment Options From Perimenopause To Menopause

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Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

Treatment options from perimenopause to menopause explain how hormonal and nonhormonal treatments can help you feel better during menopause. Up to 85% of people going through menopause have symptoms like night sweats and hot flashes, but 70% go untreated. Night sweats can disturb your sleep leaving you exhausted and disturbed the next day.

Studies show that those who go untreated for hot flashes and night sweats visit their doctor more than those who get treatment. For instance, if you have symptoms, you will miss work which directly impacts your life and society. Hence, this is a good reason for you to get treatment for menopause symptoms. 

Treatment Options From Perimenopause To Menopause

Hormone replacement therapy

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

According to medical experts, hormone therapy is the most effective treatment for treating hot flashes and night sweats from menopause. Although many women think hormone therapy is bad, and opt to go through menopause without treatment. However, your symptoms can be very intense and likely to affect your overall life. 

So if you go through menopause before 45 years, hormone replacement therapy may be a great option for you. This is because early menopause can lead to a higher risk of long-term health consequences that include cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, dementia, poor quality of life, and sexual dysfunction.

Safety and effectiveness

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

Hormone therapy is a safe and effective treatment if you’re under age 60 or within 10 years of your last menstrual cycle. And you don’t have any current or previous conditions that prevent you from using hormone therapy.

For how long

There’s no specific age cutoff for hormone therapy. The duration depends on when your menopause began. So once you begin, you may have symptoms for 7 to 10 years. Therefore treatment will last as long as your doctor thinks you need it. Nonetheless, a review with your doctor annually will determine if you need to continue. Because you may only need it for a few years, while others may need treatment longer.

But note that since your symptoms can last up to a decade, it may take a while to be yourself again.  The plus is that you may get back to feeling like yourself quicker through hormone therapy.

Hormone therapy and weight gain

If you’re worried about weight gain from hormone therapy treatment, there’s little or no effect on how much you weigh. But it can help with the way your weight may be distributed. For example, after menopause, you may have more belly fat due to a drop in estrogen. But hormone therapy can actually help prevent that.

In addition, while hormone therapy doesn’t directly affect your weight, it can help you stay energized and get better sleep at night. In turn, this may encourage you to exercise frequently, eat healthier and thus prevent weight gain.

Though without any treatment, your symptoms like night sweats or hot flashes will eventually disappear after menopause. But the issue is that if you don’t get treatment, any weight gained during menopause may be difficult to shed.

Nonhormonal Treatment Options For Menopause

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

The good news is that you don’t have to take hormone therapy. There are other non-hormone therapy treatment options from perimenopause to menopause that can improve your quality of life.

Lifestyle Changes That Impact Menopause

The following non-hormone options can help ease some of your symptoms:

Lifestyle approaches:

  • Regular Exercise
  • Staying away from triggers like caffeine or spicy foods
  • Cool clothing and environments
  • Yoga
  • Weight loss


Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause
  • Paroxetine mesylate (Brisdelle)
  • Other SSRIs
  • SNRIs
  • Gabapentinoids
  • Clonidine (Catapres, Catapres-TTS-1, Catapres-TTS-2)

Mind-body techniques:

  • CBT
  • Clinical hypnosis
  • Mindfulness-based stress reduction
  • Pace respiration and relaxation

Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM):

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause
  • Supplements and herbs like vitamin E, black cohosh, milk thistle, cannabinoids, and many more

Preventive Care After Menopause

After menopause, preventative care is still important. Medical experts suggest you see your OB/GYN on a regular basis, especially if you have vaginal dryness, bleeding, or breast lumps.

Breast cancer screening

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

Breast cancer screenings and mammograms annually or every other year, until you’re at least 75, is another important recommendation.

Pap Smears and HPV Tests

Treatment options for perimenopause and menopause

Pap smears with or without an HPV test (ask your doctor if you need one) are also important after menopause. If you’ve had a negative Pap test, also called a Pap smear, and a negative HPV test after the age of 30, then you can space these tests out every 5 years.

Bottom Line

Finally, it’s your choice whether you want to stay with your regular doctor or change to one who focuses on postmenopausal care. The most critical goal is to find a doctor that will focus on the best treatment that enhances your quality of life during your menopause.

Photo Credit: Creative Commons

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