Fortunately, many of the signs and symptoms associated with menopause are temporary. Take the following steps to help reduce or prevent their effects.

Cool hot flashes

Dress in layers and always carry a bottle of cool water with you wherever you go. Try to pinpoint what triggers your hot flashes. For many women, triggers may include hot beverages, caffeine, spicy foods, alcohol, stress, hot weather and even a warm room.

Decrease vaginal discomfort

Use over-the-counter, water-based vaginal lubricants (Astroglide, K-Y jelly, others) or moisturizers. Choose products that don’t contain glycerin, which can cause burning or irritation in women who are sensitive to that chemical. Staying sexually active also helps by increasing blood flow to the vagina.

Get enough sleep

Avoid caffeine, which can make it hard to get to sleep, and avoid drinking too much alcohol, which can interrupt sleep. Exercise during the day, although not right before bedtime. If hot flashes disturb your sleep, you may need to find a way to manage them before you can get adequate rest.

Practise relaxation techniques

Techniques such as deep breathing and paced breathing, guided imagery, massage and progressive muscle relaxation can help relieve menopausal symptoms.

Strengthen your pelvic floor

Pelvic floor muscle exercises can improve some forms of urinary incontinence.

Eat a balanced diet

Include a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Limit saturated fats, oils, and sugars.

Don’t smoke

Smoking increases your risk of heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, cancer and a range of other health problems. It may also increase hot flashes and bring on earlier menopause.

Exercise regularly

Get regular physical activity or exercise on most days to help protect against heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, and other conditions associated with aging.

August 26, 2016

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