Menopause and lack of sleep

Two of the most frequent concerns with women going through perimenopause and menopause are difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep. According to research published in the Journal of Clinical Nursing, approximately 95 percent of menopausal women surveyed said they had difficulty sleeping. In fact, lack of sleep is often the most severe symptom women experience.

For women who suffer from menopausal related sleep problems Rebecca Hulem recommends:

1.Three healthier options to prescription sleep aids
a. Aroma therapy -- try lavender essential oils ... either drops on your pillow or in a hot bath
b. Buy a "white noise" machine
c. "Dreamerz" All natural sleep dietary supplement -- online at or can be purchased at Whole Foods and Longs Drugstores

2. Three habits to break before bed
a. Nicotine
b. Caffeine
c. Alcohol
Stop all three at least 3 hours before bedtime

3. The ideal environment that promotes healthy sleep.
Women in particular need a sleeping environment that is cool, dark and quiet. Cover digital clocks and turn off the television (blue light in particular has been linked to blockage of the body's natural production of melatonin)

According to Hulem, there are three major factors that contribute to mid-life sleep problems. Among those issues is age and although we cannot control it, as a person ages, the amount of melatonin released in the body decreases and can cause sleep disturbances. Also, fluctuating hormone levels, especially estrogen (balances body temperature), progesterone (calming moods and making you feel sleepy) and melatonin (signals to the body that it is time to prepare for sleep when darkness occurs) can be a culprit since all three are crucial for providing a good night's sleep. In addition, prolonged stress can eventually take its toll on your adrenal glands, reducing their ability to compensate for stress. While hormones are a viable option for some women, Hulem says to keep in mind they are for temporary relief meaning that you should not expect to take them for the rest of your life.

>> Buy her book on Amazon: Feelin' Hot? A Humorous, Informative and Truthful Look at Menopause

>> Rebecca's

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