Today Sunday 18 October 2020 is World Menopause Day.
The Menopause Hub, Ireland’s only dedicated menopause clinic, has conducted research with over 1000 women in Ireland to understand their experience of menopause. ‘There is an enormous lack of research in Ireland about this taboo topic’ says Loretta Dignam, Founder of the clinic, ‘a spotlight needs to be shone on this much neglected area of women’s health.’
Some stats about menopausal women in Ireland:
Menopause (perimenopause and post menopause) affects 50% of the population. Today there are 571,000 women in the 45-65-year-old menopausal age cohort (CSO, 2016 Census). And yet …
Key findings: (Research conducted online in Sept / Oct 2020)
80% of women say that they are or were unprepared for menopause
66% say that they knew nothing or very little about menopause beforehand
79% of women rate the level of information & support for menopause in Ireland as poor/ very poor
Women rate the level of menopause taboo at 7 out of 10 (with 10 being completely taboo and 0 being not taboo at all)
Almost half of women do not feel confident talking to their GP about menopause
Loretta says that ‘she is not at all surprised at these results as she hears this from women every day at The Menopause Hub. However, they are shockingly stark statistics that show that there is a lot of work to be done to educate and empower women to seek help and to stop suffering in silence. In addition, our healthcare system needs to step up to the plate and provide better support for women. Menopause is where mental health was about 10 years ago.’
Dr Caoimhe Hartley, Clinical Director at The Menopause Hub, says ‘here are the things I hear on a daily basis. “I feel like I am going crazy”, “I have lost my zest/ va-va-voom/ verve/ joie de vivre”, “I never realized that could be due to menopause”….”but I am still having periods, I can’t be menopausal”… we need more research and education to prepare women for menopause”
Top 3 menopause support solutions
Women were asked what support they wanted for menopause and the following are the top 3 solutions
- A dedicated HSE Menopause Unit to provide information and support
- Public awareness campaign to educate women and society in general about menopause
- Information pack distributed at time of Cervical Check and Breast Check examinations
Research undertaken during Covid-19 shows that women’s menopausal symptoms are exacerbated: (research conducted online in April 2020)
30% of women said their symptoms were worse during the Covid-19 pandemic, especially anxiety, insomnia and fatigue
48% of women said that their relationship with their partner has been negatively impacted because of their menopause during covid-19
Phase of menopause
There are as many as 40 symptoms of menopause (see our Symptom Checker) which include psychological, emotional, physical, and genitourinary symptoms.
Incredibly famous are the hot flushes of menopause, but little is known or acknowledged about the psychological symptoms which include anxiety, depression, panic attacks, mood swings, anger, and rage. The mental health impact is enormous and unspoken about.
80% have symptoms
76% described them as moderate to severe
25% described their symptoms as severe
Google is the #1 source of information on menopause – 66% said this is where they go for information.
About The Menopause Hub https://www.themenopausehub.ie/
The Menopause Hub was founded by Loretta Dignam, borne out of her own challenging and isolating experience of menopause and opened its doors in Mount Merrion, Dublin in December 2018. The clinic offers a holistic approach to menopause, with doctors, a psychologist, a dietitian & nutritionist, acupuncturist, and physiotherapist.
Loretta is a passionate advocate and wants to shortcut the journey for other menopausal women and help them to navigate their way through this challenging phase of their life.
Contact Loretta Dignam on 086 8146603 or on [email protected]