WHEN DO YOU TAKE THE HRT BULL BY THE HORNS?
Updated: Mar 31, 2018
When I was 42 my periods started to change. I'd been one of those '28 days' type of gals. I even had a period 28 days to the day after I'd given birth... BOTH TIMES! Oh yes. Regular as clockwork, pretty light and unremarkable. Until I was 42. And then my periods went from easy peasy lemon squeezy to clotty shitty kill me nowy. Not only did they become heavy and rocking in the corner painful but the inner rage unleashed a couple of days before they landed was scary.
And so this continued. I sucked it up. I 'manned' up. But I dreaded their arrival - by the way which now was between 19 and 24 days apart. At the age of 45, after relentless Googling and obsession with peri-menopause, I went to see my doctor. She suggested the Mirena coil (after a quick blood test to see where my hormones stood - defo on the decline but not quite ready for HRT she said).
HRT? H.R.T.? 'That's not for me' I said, shaking my heavily researched head, I shall be going down the au natural route - powdered yams, chanting, lighting some exotic incense that I need to stick up my arse etc etc....
So in the Mirena coil went (by the way, hurts less than having a baby but more than having a tattoo - thank god it's quick!) and things improved in the first month. Bye bye heavy periods, ta-ta menstrual back pain and up yours filthy moods!! Mirena you are the bomb!
The proper peri-menopause Fairy landed about a year or so later. She waved her wand of hormonal doom and an exotic list of symptoms trickled through my system until I couldn't remember how long I had even had them;
tiredness and fatigue
feeling of impending doom
the libido of a dead fish
itching - under the boobs and in the groin plus my calves
slight obsession with burying my husband under the patio
After some intensive research and a chance discovery of Dr Louise Newson's website, I decided that maybe HRT might be for me after all and back I went to my GP. I've been lucky that my GP is empathic, understanding and totally gets the whole gig. I know from our Feeling Flush community that this isn't always the case.
HRT does get a bad rep - all from one rogue and misinterpreted study published 17 years ago that pointed out the correlation it had had with women getting breast cancer.
There is now strong research for the benefits of starting HRT earlier - BEFORE you go through the whole menopause journey. I, like many others, thought that you took HRT once you had finished your periods. HRT was for dry, shrivelled up old ladies who set their hair and wore pearls with a twinset....
And so my HRT journey has begun - a daily dose of Oestrogel that has relived all my symptoms (besides the libido thing and the occasional night sweat but we will talk about that in another blog!). But it's important to point out that it's not for everyone, and the same thing doesn't work for all, BUT you shouldn't be frightened to go and investigate with your doctor and try out the options. Whether you try patches, pills, gels or pessaries - HRT comes in many forms and we haven't even touched on trying bio-identicals.
If you can't decide, become informed - knowledge is power ladies. Give yourself some time to do the research and you can start by joining our Feeling Flush community.
Also, the following websites give some interesting research and content - my favourite being The Menopause Doctor. ;
Good Luck Feeling Flushes and thanks for visiting! We've got this....