Hypnotherapy and the menopause
Why is it that women throughout the world go through it and yet seem to know so little about it? Ask any woman below 40 years of age (and probably any man for that matter) what the menopause is and they’ll probably respond that it’s something to do with hot flushes. And of course, they’re right, hot flushes are part of the perimenopause/menopause process, but there’s far more to it than that.
The menopause, or rather the perimenopause; the time leading up to the ending of a woman’s periods, can be one of the more challenging times in a woman’s life. Symptoms often ease once periods finally stop, although some symptoms such as hot flushes can continue for many years after. This is the time in her life when a woman potentially experiences a number of symptoms of both a physical and psychological nature.
Yes, hot flushes are a well-recognised symptom, but it is by no means the only one. The problem with this myth that they are the main or only symptom is that women are not prepared for other changes in their lives; finding themselves experiencing other symptoms that they don’t connect to their hormonal changes and therefore leave them feeling vulnerable and confused.
So what symptoms do women experience and how can hypnotherapy help?
It’s important to remember that no two women are the same, even mothers and daughters can differ in their symptoms of perimenopause/menopause.
Other common symptoms include night sweats, anxiety, low mood, insomnia or changed sleeping patterns, reduced libido, weight gain, panic attacks and general changes in body shape.
Not every woman will experience any or certainly not all of these symptoms but often, they experience some part of this list and don’t necessarily connect it to their time of life.
Hypnotherapy can help alleviate or control symptoms and there is rising evidence that it can be very effective in helping women to cope. In fact, Gary Elkins Ph.D. of the Mind-Body Medicine Research Laboratory at Baylor University in a study into the use of hypnosis for menopausal symptoms found that hypnosis reduced hot flushes in 80% of women involved in the study. He also suggests that participants experienced improved quality of life and a lessening of anxiety and depression.
The use of suggestion to the subconscious of an alternative feeling to the symptom experienced such as a cooling breeze to help alleviate a hot flush, feelings of calmness during periods of anxiety or panic or managing feelings related to an altered body image which can also tie in with a reduced libido can help women negotiate this time in their lives when they should be celebrating their knowledge and wisdom with confidence in their own skin rather than feel like they’re losing their place in the world.
Hypnotherapy is a gentle yet effective way of creating confidence and managing those changes to the next phase in life.
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About Catherine Evans
Catherine Evans is a counsellor, hypnotherapist and BWRT® practitioner working in a private practice in Reading. She works with a variety of clients and has a special interest in working with issues related to the menopause as well as fertility, pregnancy and post birth difficulties.