Everyone will experience the menopause differently depending on their own constitution – there is no one size fits all. Some of the most common symptoms include:
However, it’s important to note that these aren’t the only symptoms that can signal menopause; just because you’re not experiencing hot flushes it doesn’t mean you aren’t experiencing hormonal changes.
Do you feel angry or agitated? Getting night sweats or hot flushes?
Whether we experience excess heat or cold will also depend on our individual constitution. There are yogic postures and breathing techniques that help to regulate each one of us, helping to create balance.
When we feel calm we also feel cool, so by using soft forward bends and working with the breath we can create calm. When we include cooling breathwork we calm and cool our bodies. If we are feeling excess heat we can add cooling herbs like mint, fennel and coriander to food.
If you feel too warm at night time you should check whether duvet is too thick and perhaps open a window (your body temperature drops at nighttime, which is why you may find it difficult to sleep when you’re too hot), as well as avoiding the hot sun and hot baths…
Does your skin feel dry, or is your hair more wiry? Do you feel cold?
Applying coconut oil to the skin and hair can reduce dryness and also help to relieve any stiff joints. An oil-based massage can also increase the production of oestrogen within the skin (which is drastically dropping during the menopause).
If your skin feels too dry you can up your fluid intake by sipping warm drinks throughout the day. Note that eating a cold and dry diet can aggravate osteoporosis so eating warm and moist foods is key, always with the idea of creating balance. With better digestion everything functions well; we can use diet and the way we eat to help regulate our system. Eating warm and moist foods during the winter when it is cold and eating lighter and cooler foods in the summer to keep our temperature down during the warmer months can really help.
In short, yes. Yoga helps us to observe our individual patterns; we start to notice the things that are both helpful and unhelpful. This enables us to better prepare for sleep, so that we can release tension that the day has brought and set ourselves up for a good night’s rest. There are specific breathing techniques that help to calm the nervous system and prepare us for a restful night. These techniques can also help to reduce anxiety, which often keeps us awake at night. By working with the breath and lengthening our own exhale we feel more relaxed, anxiety is reduced and healthy, more restorative sleep is encouraged.
The mind will automatically be engaged by working with the breath, helping to regulate the nervous system – the more efficiently we function, the more clarity we have, aiding focus and wellness.