Any woman suffering from menopausal symptoms or who is about to enter the premenopausal years should seek the advice of a qualified health professional in order to discuss the various options for estrogen replacement therapy or other forms of treatment.
If you are fortunate you will be able to find a doctor who has dealt with menopausal women in the past and who is up to date on the various treatment strategies.
It is important that you and your chosen medical professional be on the same page as it relates to how to treat or whether to treat at all.
This list might help you decide which type medical professional(s) to consult with:
Gynecologist – This is a specialist that deals with the care of women throughout their lives. They are experts in the management of menopausal symptoms and know all about traditional hormone replacement therapy (HRT) along with the risks and benefits of taking these and other types of medications.
If you do not currently have a gynecologist you should find one before you have reached the premenopausal years. That way they can take a thorough history and physical and can advise you on the various options that can be used when menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats begin to occur.
Family Doctor – Many family doctors are capable of assisting you with the management of menopausal symptoms. They see people of all ages and should be able prescribe hormone replacement therapy (HRT) if needed. They may not be up on the latest research studies regarding menopause and menopausal symptoms but they generally treat many people who have these problems.
Herbalist – If you are not interested in a traditional form of hormone replacement therapy (HRT), you may want to consult a qualified herbalist who understands how herbs and other medicinal plants can help manage menopausal symptoms without the need for estrogen or progesterone.
You should keep your doctor updated on what you are doing to be sure the herbalist recommends will not negatively affect any other medications you are taking.
Acupuncturist – Some people choose to have acupuncture or acupressure for the management of their menopausal and premenopausal symptoms. Acupuncture is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine and involves using slim, sterile needles in various acupuncture points on the body.
The needles help improve the flow of qi energy, which is a vital life force that travels through natural “highways” called meridians in the body. There are specific acupuncture points that correspond to menopausal symptoms. The needles are kept in the body for a brief period of time.
Sometimes electrical impulses are sent into the needles or the needles are twirled to enhance the flow of qi. Many women swear that their hot flashes and other symptoms are lessened after taking regular acupuncture treatments.
Holistic practitioner – Sometimes the best of all worlds is a holistic doctor who is trained in conventional medicine but uses a holistic approach with various alternative therapies along with modern medicine to treat the whole person during this trying time.