Conquering Sleep Changes During MidLife

Conquering Sleep Changes During MidLife

Of all the changes happening during perimenopause and menopause, difficulty sleeping is one of the most common. Women may notice a difference as early as their late 30s.What feels like insomnia may actually be hormone changes disrupting sleep.

At any stage in life, lack of sleep slows metabolism, lowers sex drive and increases forgetfulness–of all the changes during menopause, controlling sleep could mend other symptoms disrupting your life like mental fogginess or mood changes.

One possible solution to conquering sleep is considering short-term hormone therapy (HT). One in every five women says that menopausal symptoms, such as night sweats, are severe enough to disrupt sleep. HT is also known to reduce hot flashes and help with vaginal symptoms during menopause.

To sustain quality of life and not disrupt it, consider a new nightly routine and stick with it:

  1. Lower the room temperature & take a hot bath

    These both lower your body temperature, signaling to the body that it’s time for bed.

  2. Buy new pajamas

    Wear clothing that absorbs sweat or breathable materials, such as long johns or gym shorts. They’ll help you stay dry during the night.

  3. Exercise

    Exercise will always be beneficial and improve sleep – at any point in life.

  4. Avoid caffeine after noon

  5. Maintain a consistent bed time and wake time

  6. Consider lavender

    The scent has been shown to help with sleep.

  7. Turn your clock around

    It often creates anxiety which further disrupts your sleep.

  8. Avoid “screen time” for at least 1-2 hours prior to bed

  9. And remember…the bedroom is for two things…

…one of which is sleep. Try to avoid reading, watching television, etc., while you are in bed

Stick with your new routine, but if you’re still having trouble sleeping the recommended eight hours, talk to you primary care physician about a referral to a sleep doctor or other alternatives that will induce a good night’s slumber.

Your partner in midlife wellness,

Dr. Laurie

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  • Laurie Birkholz, MD

    Laurie Birkholz, MD

    When Laurie Birkholz, MD, isn’t providing women’s health care at Lakeshore Health Partners, she enjoys the hiking trails and beaches in our community with husband, Eric, and their two daughters. Dr. Birkholz has a special interest in holistic health – focusing on all aspects of health-mind, body and spirit and their roles in continuing good health or returning to previous levels of health. From sexual health and cancer survivorship to nutrition and fitness counseling, Dr. Laurie helps women of all ages make their life a great life!

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    All blogs by Laurie Birkholz, MD

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