Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital report on the Silence of Menopause.

From time to time, my wife has me read news articles that she finds interesting.  Here is one from womensenews.org that I think bears passing along…

When the Netflix show Goop Lab debuted a few months ago,  there was one important bright spot  we should all pay attention to: 90-year-old sex educator Betty Dobson offering advice on sensuality.  She is living proof that sex doesn’t end at menopause-and that’s just one of the powerful lessons our culture needs to learn about post-reproductive years.  Our national silence on menopause has led to misdiagnosis, mistreatment and needless suffering for millions of women.

On average, women live for about 78 years ~ of that, only about 15 years fall in the peak reproductive period (25-40).  Most women will spend far longer in the post-reproductive years.  And many know almost nothing about what to expect when those years end.  Less than 5% of women surveyed report that their mother or another significant female figure shared information about the menopausal years.  Mothers of that era did not typically have the tools to help guide their daughters themselves.   Many times, what was passed on was misinformation and silence.

This shouldn’t be surprising: For most of the 19th and 20th century, women’s body’s and health needs were regarded as less important than men’s.  As researchers at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital reported in 2014, “The science that informs medicine – including the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease – routinely fails to consider the crucial impact of sex and gender.”

As a gynecologist and a man, I am dismayed at our cultures silence on menopause.  Sadly,  I am constantly reminded of this fact.  Recently,  Kathy M.,  a  68 year- old patient came to our practice complaining of severe vaginal dryness and pain with intercourse.  She  had consulted her  physician and a  specialist about this problem, but was told she should just expect her sex life to suffer as she ages.  One doctor offered her anti-depressants.

The good news is that many safe and effective therapies are now available for vaginal dryness, pain, and other sexual issues.  At our office, Kathy M. was prescribed a combination of natural, bio-identical hormones and a short term vaginal cream to both alleviate the dryness and increase her sensitivity and orgasm.  Shortly, she reported resuming sexual relations with her husband.  (Her husband was also placed on natural bio-identical hormones)  It has changed their marriage.

With over 30 years of experience and numerous board certifications and credentials, Dr. Watts, MD, ND, MSNM and Helena Williams, ARNP, MS are experts in the Science and Art of Integrative Medicine and Bio-identical Hormone Balancing.  Bio-identical Hormone Balancing requires individualized therapy and ongoing dosing changes based not only on a patient’s diagnostic lab values, but also their symptoms. Due to the sensitive nature of hormone balancing, it is imperative that you work in partnership with an experienced provider and program.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, you can call us at 941-926-4905, email us at [email protected], or RSVP (or tune in on Livestream) to our upcoming seminar. 

Reference:

Douglas. A.S. Sex Doesn’t End at 40, and Other Reasons to End Silence About Menopause. March 2020.