World Menopause Day

World Menopause Day is held every year on the 18th October to raise awareness of the menopause and the support options available for improving woman’s health and wellbeing.

The average age for the menopause is fifty-one and three-quarters of women will experience symptoms.

  • Night Sweats
  • Hot Flushes
  • Mood Swings
  • Sleep Disturbances
  • Irritability
  • Lack of Self-confidence

Other symptoms include:

  • Dry or thinning hair
  • Dry skin
  • Joint pains
  • Vaginal dryness
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It is not just women who are affected by menopause – indirectly partners, family, friends, and colleagues can all feel the impact of these debilitating symptoms. It is also alarming to find that a recent survey in the UK found around one in eight women quit their job because of menopause symptoms.

Levels or severity vary from woman to woman and over time, and there are various forms of treatment. Depending on the symptoms, sometime blood pressure medication may be prescribed to tackle hot flushes or the local application of creams of gels to relieve dryness whilst in other cases a course of anti-depressants may be appropriate. By far the most prescribed and effective treatment though is Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), a medication typically available in the form of tablets, patches and gels.

HRT acts to restore the bodies natural hormone levels which relieves most of the symptoms, and although there are some known side effects, the most serious of which is an elevated risk of developing breast cancer the risk is low. It is widely accepted that the benefits far outweigh any risks. Most women usually take HRT for a few years, but it is not unusual to take them for up to 5 years depending on how long the menopausal symptoms last.

It is important that we are all aware of the menopause and more conscious and considerate to woman who may be suffering what are often very debilitating symptoms, and this includes employers and colleagues as well and families and friends. It is also important for women who are affected to seek medical advice from a doctor and where appropriate to receive treatment.

With millions of women affected globally each year and requiring HRT is essential that your health insurance provides for these vital treatments and medications and does not exclude or restrict them, and it is worth checking the small print as this is surprisingly common, even with so-called premium International Private Medical Insurers (IPMIs). Thankfully all HanseMerkur expatriate health insurance cover all medically necessary HRT treatments in full without restriction ensuring our members can receive the best treatment and care during menopause.