GP Visit and Menopause – Get Organised!
We’ve all been there…
Walked into a room to do or say something – but completely forgotten what it was.
With the menopause riding pillion on this part of your journey through life, it’s highly likely that a memory lapse or two will happen more frequently.
However, if it coincides with a trip to see your doctor – there are even more consequences.
Since such memory blips became a part of my own life, I’ve become a lover of lists. I write EVERYTHING down. And I’d suggest that this is indeed the way forward if you’re planning to see your GP about the symptoms you’re experiencing, even if you are not sure it has anything to do with the menopause – think about missed periods, sleeping badly, waking up tired, hot flushes and don’t forget that age is no barrier to menopause, you could be in the age-range of 45 – 65. That’s right, 45 – 65!
Here are my tips and tricks to help make sure you a) remember what you went for and b) are coherent enough to vocalise your worries. Remember – there’s no such thing as a silly question!
- Make a list of questions and make sure you ask them, ALL of them. Then tick them off!
- Takes notes about the answers so you remember what’s been said.
- Don’t expect your GP to know all the answers – if they seem to be struggling ask to be referred to a medical menopause specialist.
- Don’t be fobbed off with anti-depressants – they really are not the answer to menopause.
- Ask about lifestyle changes you could make, for instance around the food you eat and the exercises/movement you should be engaged in to stay healthy that will help reduce the impact of symptoms.
Things I wish I’d known at the time:
A blood test is unlikely to help with diagnosis, they usually come back negative and your doctor should know from your medical records what could be wrong with you.
If you’ve a history of feeling depressed or melancholy, particularly after childbirth and monthly periods, you may have a tendency towards hormonal depression where the fist line of prescription is HRT. Should your doctor be unfamiliar with with hormone supplementation (and it’s worth asking them), request a referral to a medical menopause specialist.
I almost went down the mind-numbing drug route when I was diagnosed with depression because it seemed an easy solution at the time that I felt would give me peace and take away the responsibility of having to make decisions. Don’t succumb to this until you have spoken to specialists first. I resisted. I’m so glad I did.
Lastly, don’t leave that GP visit to chance – menopause is enough of a gamble in life as it is!
Good luck and don’t forget that not only do we offer personal coaching on the subject to individual women (or groups of women) but we are also experts at offering training in the workplace so that management knows and understands enough about menopause to help and support you through the transition without bullying and harassment. Go to https://kathryncolasacademy.com for more information.