First Posted May 2017
Women’s lives are full of transitions and Perimenopause is probably one of the biggest. “It is a time in a woman’s life when physiological changes occur that begin the transition to menopause.” What they don’t mention, is that while you are going thru a lot of physical changes, perimenopause also changes how you see yourself & how you feel in your own skin.
During the perimenopause phase, the hormonal balance in a woman’s body is in flux. The process gradually starts to happen 8 – 10 years before the onset of menopause. What happens during perimenopause is:
- The ovaries are starting to lose their ability to make estrogen and progesterone and you aren’t ovulating every month.
- Your periods become irregular and start to taper off until they stop completely sometime around the age of 52.
- By menopause, most women’s testosterone levels are a lot lower, which can lower their libido.
- Usually, starts around 40 – 50, but can start in your 30’s or last until your 60’s. Every woman’s experience is different.
I would recommend being proactive and:
- Get informed about perimenopause/menopause. If you are able, talk to your Mother and/or Grandmother to find out what they experienced. You may have a similar experience, but not always.
- If your perimenopausal symptoms are impacting your life, talk to your Medical Professional or Naturopath. If you don’t have one, I would recommend finding one that you can really talk to.
There is a lot of talk in the media about different things that you can use to alleviate the physical symptoms of perimenopause. There are also alternatives in the health-food store that you may want to check out. As I mentioned in my “Wise Women” blog, essential oils can help ease PMS type symptoms & they are also useful for many of the physical & emotional symptoms of perimenopause…
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, consider:
- Irritability or Mood Swings: diffuse, use a personal inhaler or add to an unscented body lotion (1% dilution). Try Lavender, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Neroli, Frankincense, Grapefruit, Mandarin, Rose, Roman Chamomile or Patchouli essential oil.
- Hot Flashes: try a roll on (2% dilution) with Clary Sage, Cypress, Eucalyptus Dives, Geranium, Lemon, Peppermint or Spearmint, Sweet Basil linalool essential oil.
- Night (or Day) Sweats: try a roll on (2% dilution) or add a diluted blend to your bath. Try Patchouli, Grapefruit, Thyme (ct linalol) or Cypress essential oil.
- Insomnia: diffuse or use a personal inhaler with Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Sweet Marjoram, Neroli, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Patchouli essential oil.
- Bloating: try a massage oil (1% dilution) & massage your abdomen, feet or legs. Consider Juniper Berry, Grapefruit, Lemon or Coriander essential oils.
- Heavy Periods: a massage oil (1% dilution) with Cypress, Frankincense or Geranium essential oil. You can also use with a warm compress.
- Anxiety or Depression: diffuse or use a personal inhaler with Lavender, Lemon, Neroli, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Geranium, Tangerine, Rose or Patchouli essential oil.
- Loss of Libido: try a massage oil (1% dilution) or add a diluted blend to your bath. Try Sweet Fennel, Black Pepper, Coriander, Rosemary, Jasmine, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Rose, Ylang Ylang essential oil.
- Hormonal Migraines: try a roll on (2% dilution) with Lavender, Lemon, Helichrysum, Clary Sage, Sweet Marjoram, Geranium or Rosemary; you can also diffuse a light citrus scent like Grapefruit or Tangerine essential oil.
- Brain Fog or Fatigue: try a roll on (2% dilution) or a Personal Inhaler with Rosemary, Sweet Basil linalool, Lemon, Bergamot, Coriander, Sweet Thyme, Grapefruit, Lemongrass, Petitgrain or Rose essential oil.
- Dry, Itchy Skin: try adding essential oils to an unscented body lotion (1% dilution). Oils to consider are Rose, Neroli, Frankincense, Roman Chamomile, Mandarin, Patchouli, Jasmine, Clary Sage, or Geranium essential oil.
The Perimenopause phase of a woman’s life is nothing but transitions that we have very little control over except to try to manage the symptoms. Midlife is also a time when other parts of our lives are changing too. Our careers may be evolving or ending; if you have children, they may now be grown, going off to college or moving out of the “nest.” With all of these changes, you may be feeling a lot of different emotions. Take the time for some Self-Care, and honor whatever it is you are feeling. You may be depressed with all of the changes, wondering where your “new ” place is in the world. You may feel like you don’t know your own body anymore with all of the physical changes that you are going thru. You may feel cautiously excited when you realize that this is now your moment, to reacquaint yourself with who you are & have the time to explore the things that make you unique. So whether you want to spread your wings, or take it one baby step at a time, find ways to honor yourself, your journey & each moment.
My Blog is for Information Only & is not meant to diagnose or replace Medical Advice.Essential Oils should not be ingested & always need to be diluted before topical use.
*Some Citrus Oils are Phototoxic, be sure to use at a low dilution (.05%) for topical use, avoid tanning beds & cover up when going out into the sun.
- Battaglia Salvatore. (2003) The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. 2nd edition, The International Centre of Holistic Aromatherapy, Australia,
- Worwood, V. A. (2016). Complete book of essential oils and aromatherapy: over 800 natural, nontoxic, and fragrant … recipes to create health, beauty, and safe home an. New World Library.
Woman with hat Photo from canstock .com/milagal