Fighting memory loss battles with menopause
Have you ever imagined how your life would be if you developed memory loss? For women who have reached menopause, the memory becomes one of their worst enemies. In this article, Dr Archana Pathak, a leading gynaecologist in Delhi NCR, explains why memory is so important to every one of us and how it can be difficult for women going through menopause to function in their daily lives.
As the statement goes, we learn from our mistakes, which we must have committed in the past. Life lessons, skills, and abilities are all hampered for people suffering from memory loss.
An overview of menopause
Menopause is when a woman has her final menstrual cycle. It occurs when your ovaries cease the release of hormones that control the mensuration. It is a natural process of growing older, and it also signifies the end of women’s fertile and reproductive years. A woman starts to experience this between their 40s and 50s, while some people have premature menopause or induced menopause as a result of surgery or damage to the ovaries.
Stages of menopause
Menopause is the permanent termination of menstruation that does not occur as a result of any medical intervention; instead is a natural process. For women going through natural menopause, the transition is gradual and divided into three stages.
Perimenopause: It occurs approximately eight to 9 years before you reach menopause; this is when the ovaries start to generate less estrogen. Around this time, a woman may have irregular periods, weight gain, and have mood swings. A woman will still have periods and may become pregnant at this time.
Menopause: It is the period of time when you stop having menstrual periods. Your ovaries have stopped releasing eggs and producing estrogen. When a woman hasn’t had a menstrual cycle for around 12 months in a row, it clearly indicates that she has reached menopause.
Postmenopause: It refers to the times after which you haven’t had menstruation for a year.
Many women’s menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, may subside at this time. Some women, however, continue to have menopausal symptoms for years after they have reached menopause. Post-menopausal women are more likely to develop health diseases.
Cognitive deficits in peri- and post-menopausal women
During the menopause transition, cognitive deterioration is a common concern. Changes in memory are linked to a decrease in oestrogen production. Many peri- and post-menopausal women complain about sleep problems, feeling of sadness and depression and hot flashes, all of which might contribute to cognitive deficits. Hormone therapy can boost oestrogen levels, but it is not for everyone. Mind-body together has the ability to alleviate the symptoms of post-menopausal cognitive decline.
Memory loss in menopause: How to fight it
One of the most aggravating symptoms women have throughout their menopausal years is fuzzy thinking, sometimes known as brain fog. These simple techniques might help you stay focused and rid your mind of any hazy feelings.
Keep your mind and body in shape
Working out and focusing on muscle training may help you keep your mind in balance. It might be possible that exercise may help cause new nerve cells to sprout in the brain. Physical activity can also boost the production of substances that help brain cells to repair themselves, therefore helping to prevent memory loss.
Keep your bedtime and wake up time constant
After menopause, feeling sleep deprived is common, but it is always recommended to have a good night’s sleep as it can aid with brain fog and goofy thinking. Recalling previous incidents can be difficult if you do not get enough sleep. A sleep schedule that provides more restful sleep and gives a peaceful relaxation to your mind and body should be practised. Avoid eating or drinking caffeine or alcohol close to bedtime, and unwind with a warm bath or relaxing music to set the atmosphere.
Fuel the body and brain with healthy food
Foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids, like salmon and mackerel, may benefit menopause. Omega 3 fatty acids are known to enhance learning, concentration and memory. Dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale are essential for the better functioning of the brain. Other food items like yoghurt, cheese, milk flax seeds, chia seeds, broccoli and berries like blueberries and other dark berries are beneficial for improving memory functioning.
Focus on mind games
If you are having trouble remembering phone numbers or passwords due to brain fog, segregate your passwords and phone numbers in a much simpler format. To make learning and recalling the complete piece of information easier, concentrate on remembering one portion at a time. Associating a name with an image is a clever approach to remembering names.
Find a healthy way to relieve stress
As menopause hits, a woman starts to stress over various life situations. Caring for ageing parents and juggling home and work life and all of this can act as a big stressor for women and can lead to memory loss and attention problems. Finding a healthy approach to unwind can be a lovely present for yourself. Meditation, yoga, dancing are a few techniques that may help with this menopause symptom.
Brain fog during menopause: How to improve it
Menopause is associated with memory problems, and brain fog is a common concern. Many women have reported feeling forgetful or experiencing a general “brain fog” that makes it difficult to concentrate.
Menopause “brain fog” is common in many women, however, it can be moderate and go away on its own. But it is important to consult and rule out any other severe possibilities like dementia so that you might be able to consider menopausal hormone therapy. These hormone therapies might help with various problems that you may suffer throughout menopause, not simply memory loss.
The concluding note
Memory loss is a common thing in menopause. It would only help if you talked to your doctor to create a personalised plan to help you get through the menopause stages. Keep track of your symptoms and discuss them with your specialist. As your treatment starts, you should start to feel much better, and hopefully, treatment will have a positive impact on your memory.
For more information on menopause, book an appointment with Dr Archana Pathak at the CK Birla Hospital.