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Because life doesn't pause during menopause.

Author Archives: Julie Gorges

HotFlash Heroine- Francis McDormand

HotFlash Heroine- Francis McDormand

"I'm interested in starting the conversation about aging gracefully and how, instead of making it a cultural problem."

I loved the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, Olive Kitteridge, which fearlessly featured older, cantankerous, and unglamorous characters. Although I haven’t seen the HBO miniseries yet, I can’t wait to see Frances McDormand as the book’s protagonist. One of my favorite actresses, Frances won an Academy Award for her role in Fargo and was nominated for Mississippi Burning, Almost Famous, and North Country. The 58-year-old also frequently collaborates with her husband, filmmaker Joel Coen in his films.

The character in her latest role, Olive, doesn’t mince words, and neither does Frances.

“The body suit I had to wear on hot days … that didn’t help with hot flashes,” Frances said in an interview for NPR. “We played with different sizes of body suits from the beginning of the storytelling. And we decided to start with my body — I weigh 150 pounds, I’m 5 feet, 5 inches. At the time we shot, I was pretty much on the other side of menopause — though, as we know, it never ends.”

Yes, we do know, Frances, and we totally empathize.

Frances also reflects on menopause when describing her character, Jane, in the movie, Friends with Money, which she describes as a woman in menopause mode. “Menopause in not an overnight event,” she said. “It can take years. And it’s a kind of hormonal activity that makes you crazy and not interested in sitting in chairs, but instead you want to walk around a lot. You really get tired of doing things like combing your hair and being socially nice. You say things out of turn or get too loud and opinionated at times. You experience those kinds of things and that’s where we come in on with Jane.”

Frances is not only honest about menopause but is also blunt about aging and cosmetic surgery in Hollywood. In an interview with The New York Times she announced, “I have not mutated myself in any way.” She added that her husband, director Joel Coen, “literally has to stop me physically from saying something to people — to friends who’ve had work. I’m so full of fear and rage about what they’ve done.

“One of the reasons that I am doing press again after 10 years’ absence is because I feel like I need to represent publicly what I’ve chosen to represent privately — which is a woman who is proud and more powerful than I was when I was younger. And I think that I carry that pride and power on my face and in my body. And I want to be a role model for not only younger men and women — and not just in my profession, I’m not talking about my profession. I think that cosmetic enhancements in my profession are just an occupational hazard. But I think, more culturally, I’m interested in starting the conversation about aging gracefully and how, instead of making it a cultural problem, we make it individuals’ problems. I think that ageism is a cultural illness; it’s not a personal illness.”

As she said in the interview for NPR, “I want to be revered. I want to be an elder; I want to be an elderess.”

Yea! I love this woman. Let’s embrace getting older. I want to be an elderess too!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Exactly which friends had cosmetic surgery that made you feel so enraged? Inquiring minds would love to know. Names please.

 

 

Photo Credit:  By Red Carpet Report on Mingle Media TV [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

It’s Wine or Whine

It’s Wine or Whine

I don’t care if wine makes my hot flashes worse. I don’t care if wine makes me fatter and my Buddha belly bulge.

Warning, Will Rogers! I will whine if you mess with my wine.

I don’t care if wine makes my hot flashes worse. I don’t care if wine makes me fatter and my Buddha belly bulge. I don’t care if wine makes me more dehydrated contributing to my already dry, itchy skin. And I don’t care if wine makes my fuzzy brain even fuzzier.

Leave me alone!

Ever since menopause hit, my friends and family don’t even ask questions. When I visit, they just start pouring. My neighbors know that I can hear a wine cork popping from 100 yards away and anticipate an impromptu visit to borrow “a cup of sugar.” My ever-patient husband greets every menopausal meltdown with the phrase: “Here, have some wine.”

Like everything else, of course, I blame menopause for becoming a wine enthusiast. Oh, I would love to say that I’m handling menopause in some kind of sophisticated yoga, meditation, exercise way or that I use one of those other trendy relaxation techniques to relieve stress. But it’s hard to prove that point when I’m on my second glass of wine right now.

Besides, can’t we count running late to happy hour as exercise? And in menopausal land, doesn’t a balanced diet mean a glass of wine in each hand? And didn’t I read somewhere that we don’t want to look at the glass half empty?

I’m not alone, and as always, I find that fact reassuring. How do I know? Because there are actually menopause wine charms, bottle wine chillers, and flasks just for us menopause madams (http://www.cafepress.com.au/+menopause-humor+wine-charms) with humorous tags such as “Something’s making me hot. Unfortunately it’s not you.” And “Warning! Woman Under the Influence of Testosterone.”

And let’s not forget about Hot Flash Wine (http://hotflashwines.com/wines/), and yes, there’s actually such a thing, with labels like Mood Swing Merlot, Covers Off Chardonnay and Zin-o-Pause. (Well, there MIGHT be, no surprise, last time I checked, they were out of stock! No surprise, right?)

So ‘fess up. Hasn’t your appreciation for fine wine increased since good ol’ menopause took up residence in your body? The answer to all of menopause woes may not be at the bottom of a wine glass, but most of us check.

Baby boomers who want to learn more about finding their bliss, can visit Julie’s blog.   

Does Menopause Cause Irritating Male Syndrome?

Does Menopause Cause Irritating Male Syndrome?

It's tough enough to go through menopause, why do the men in our lives have to be so irritating? Shall we turn those tables? Bwahaha!

Don’t let the title mislead you. I’m not talking about Male Menopause which is sometimes called Irritable Male Syndrome.

Yes, there’s such a thing. Like that joke, “If it’s called MENstruation and MENopause, so why don’t MEN have it?” True, men don’t have periods, but studies show they do have a form of male menopause. Evidently, due to a drop in testosterone as they age, men can have some of the same symptoms as us – weight gain, memory loss, diminished libido, hair loss, fatigue – plus a couple that thankfully we can’t have as females such as erectile dysfunction. We have enough troubles with our own female parts without worrying about that one as well.

But let men whine about this male menopause thingy on their own blogs – because my articles are about MY complaints and MY symptoms and MY menopause. I can’t imagine that male menopause is as bad as our menopause – but if it is, I don’t want to hear about it.

So this article is about irritating male syndrome – as I said, not male menopause – but about how males make US irritable during menopause.

Because while it’s true everyone infuriates us during menopause, no one can annoy us more than the men in our lives. Clueless on how to calm us down during our menopausal meltdowns, they usually manage to do and say all the wrong things. You’ve probably heard that joke: “It’s called menopause for a reason. MEN should PAUSE before they speak.” But they never seem to learn.

“You’re being a bit sensitive, aren’t you?” “Those pants look kind of tight.” “Why are you in such a bad mood?” “Aren’t you feeling better by now?” “Why don’t you… (input a thousand lame suggestions to try and solve this whole menopause thing).”

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve got a great husband. But since even delightful men can be annoying at times, we women have to take some kind of action to make ourselves feel better.

So what can we do when we’re suffering from Irritating Male Syndrome? Annoy our husbands, of course, so they can feel and understand our pain of feeling exasperated and enraged all the time.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. Okay, admittedly, this first one is kind of mean. But my husband goes poop regular as rain – once and sometimes even twice a day – while I often suffer from meno-stipation. This is irritating enough on its own, but when hubby says something super annoying on top of this whole regular bowel movement thing, it’s time to get serious. So, when we get down to the last roll of toilet paper in the entire house – I hide it in the back of the pantry. When he desperately yells for help, I pretend I don’t hear him. Now some husbands won’t notice for several days, but if you have a hubby like mine, this one works like magic. (Yes, we DID just talk about poop on HFD.)
  2. Does your husband sleep soundly while you’re up all night with insomnia and then dares to ask why you’re so cranky in the morning? Sometimes my hubby is guilty of this one. So, I eat cookies on his side of the bed. Set his alarm for 2 a.m. and blame the grandkids. Stick my finger in his ear while he’s sleeping. Wedge marshmallows between his toes. If your husband snores like mine, try putting a little Tabasco in his mouth. Get creative and have some fun since you’re up anyway!
  3. Sell his stuff at your next garage sale. This one drives my hubby, who is a pack rat, absolutely wild. Or if I’m not that brave and the offense is more minor, I move his wallet and keys off his nightstand where he usually keeps them and put them somewhere else. Then I pretend I’m sleeping while he gets ready for work in the morning and thinks he’s getting senile because he can’t remember where he puts his stuff. Give him a taste of fuzzy brain! Tee hee.
  4. Leave his boxers and socks in the washing machine for a couple of days. My husband helps with the laundry sometimes, so this one doesn’t always work for me. But if you have a husband that rarely does laundry, he won’t notice until he puts on his undies and they smell nice and damp and moldy.
  5. This one is fitting punishment for mild annoyances. I wait until my hubby is deeply enthralled in one of his favorite shows like Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe or Shipping Wars. Then I sit down, preferably across from him, and I list all the chores that he’s said he’d do around the house. And hasn’t. As a final touch, I ask for a sip of his beer and drink every last drop.

There you go, five remedies guaranteed to make you feel better about the whole Male Irritable Syndrome thing. Bahaha! Plan your revenge and have fun!

Oh, and I’m sure you have some even better ideas, so please, post them for us all!

Menopausal Sweat? That too, that too….

Menopausal Sweat? That too, that too….

Think you're more sweaty and stanky than before? Well, you're right. The list of symptoms continues, ladies...

Are you so stinky you make Right Guard turn left, Secret spill its guts, Sure uncertain, and Speed Stick slow down?

According to researchers, a change of body odor is another one of the fun symptoms we menopausal women may have to endure.

Although I’m a bit suspicious. Should we really trust these experts who apparently have nothing better to do than sniff sweaty arm pit pads of women hitting the mid-century mark?

Evidently, these experts tested menopausal sweat and lived to tell the story. They went on to write reports on how our hormone fluctuations can cause a false message to be sent to our ‘hypothalamuses’ – the part of our brain that controls body temperature. Then voila!

We ever-so-lucky menopausal women get to experience those wonderful hot flashes along with an increase in sweat production which results in changes in our body odor. On top of that, panic attacks and anxiety make us sweat even more, causing even skunks to run for their lives.

So what’s a menopausal stinky woman to do?

Before you move permanently into the bath tub, keep all the windows open no matter the weather, or glue your elbow to your waist, try the following tips:

  • Take a bath or shower daily. Yes, it sounds simple, but don’t overlook the obvious. This isn’t the time for a quick 60-second shower either. Take the time to be thorough and use lots of soap.
  • It’s time to leave the 70s in the past. Stay away from polyester and multi-blends. Stick to natural breathable fabrics like cotton and linen which gets rid of body odor by absorbing sweat instead of trapping it against the body.
  • Sorry ladies, but here’s the bad news. Although normally harmless in moderation, during menopause any amount of alcohol can negatively impact your body odor. The odor of alcohol itself can be secreted through the skin and raise your body’s temperature causing you to sweat even more. Do I dare say it again? Drink water instead. SORRY.
  • Try some changes in your diet. Cut back on strong spices like garlic as well as coffee. A lack of dietary magnesium and zinc can also contribute to body odor. Eat healthy foods rich in magnesium like spinach, nuts, seeds, and fish along with excellent sources of zinc like lean meats, poultry, oysters, beans, chickpeas, eggs, cashews, and almonds.
  • If you smoke, this is a great time to stop since it just makes the whole menopause odor thing worse. Plus, it can kill you.
  • Various underlying conditions like diabetes or kidney problems can also cause body odor changes. If you’ve noticed a significant change, see a doctor to determine if the problem could be caused by a medical condition.
  • I know, with hormones raging giving you erratic mood swings that can cause whiplash, this isn’t easy – but try not to stress which just causes you to sweat more.

So there you have it. Follow some of these tips and try not to sweat too much over this stinky, stanky, sweaty menopausal problem. If you find yourself fanning your armpits, you certainly aren’t alone.  As a cartoon I saw said: “A lady doesn’t sweat. She sparkles.”

Let’s go with that.

Julie Walters, Hot Flash Survivor!

Julie Walters, Hot Flash Survivor!

As many as 15 hot flushes a night! But still optimistic. A true Hot Flash Heroine.

Like many of you, I came to know Julie Walters for her role in Educating Rita in 1983 which earned her an Academy Award nomination, a BAFTA, and a Golden Globe. She also starred in Billy Elliot, Calendar Girls, Mama Mia!, and played Molly Weasley in seven out of eight of the Harry Potter films.

I loved Julie in her role as Rita, but here’s why I love Julie as a person – besides the fact that she has the same lovely first name as me. Like myself, she suffered from menopause symptoms for more than a decade. Oh, how I can relate!

Insomnia – my biggest complaint about menopause was also hers. “My sleep has always been a bit fragile but it was very bad through that time and trying to work at the same time,” she says in an interview for the Daily Mail.

I feel you sister.

In addition, Julie admits she suffered from as many as 15 hot flushes (as they say in England) in a single night.

“I still get hot flushes,” she told Nina Myskow in an interview for Saga Magazine. “That’s 15 bloody years. Still, it’s nothing like I did then. Ripping off your nightie and Grant thinking it’s something else! ‘No – don’t get any ideas!’ Oh God, weird! It was like a chimney and came from the base of my spine. I was doing this TV called Murder, and every take there’d be, ‘Stop! She’s having a flush!’ At the National, I’d come off stage for a quick change and have to shout, ‘Garth, the tray!’ And this guy would come with this big tin tray and fan me. Harry Potter, I was in a wig and padding, and they had to put this big tube of air conditioning in my face.”

The stories sound funny, but Julie confesses it was dreadful. I’m loving this woman more and more.

Do you suffer from fuzzy brain like me? Take comfort. During a live question and answer session with fans, Walters discussed how hard she found filming for the movie musical, Billy Elliot, saying,

“It was awful, and I couldn’t get the steps right. It was the menopause again, I don’t want to go on, but it was. I went up to the end of the room, and I’ve never done this on a set before or since, and cried. But anyway I had to come back and face everybody. It was just terrible. Anyway we got it right in the end.”

Her honesty is so refreshing and I feel so much better knowing I’m not alone. The other reason I love Julie is because she gives us all hope. Those of you who like me who spend years – yes, I’m talking years and years – in menopausal mayhem and hormonal hell can be reassured that the future looks bright.

Now 64, Julie says she feels liberated and better than ever.  “If you deal with it in a healthy fashion then I think you come out the other side a better person,” she says. “I’ve got so much more energy now than I ever had in my early 50s before the menopause.”

A healthy lifestyle for Julie included cutting down on alcohol (say it isn’t so!) and she credits acupuncture with helping her manage her symptoms. So there you go. There is hope at the end of the tunnel. By the way, as icing on the cake, Julie looks fabulous in her post-menopausal years!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: How in the world did you get through menopause without wine? Not that I plan on trying it – just curious.

Photo Credit:  “Julie Walters 2014 (cropped)” by Christopher William Adach from Mexico – The Harry Hill Movie – Julie Walters-1. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Julie_Walters_2014_(cropped).jpg#/media/File:Julie_Walters_2014_(cropped).jpg

Susan Sarandon, Menopause? No problem.

Susan Sarandon, Menopause? No problem.

Ignore the aging process and instead, focus on saving the world.

Thelma & Louise took my breath away.

This revolutionary film starred two women well past their prime by Hollywood’s standards. Yet, they were still portrayed as sexually attractive. Their personal transformation, self-discovery, and empowerment made this a potent movie. And who can forget the scene when they drive off the cliff together holding hands? Oh my! The movie was just one of Academy award-winning Susan Sarandon’s great roles.

Considering her reputation as an outspoken political activist, perhaps it’s no surprise that this 68-year-old dynamo took menopause by the bullhorns. Believing in aging gracefully, she rejected the idea of hormone replacement therapy and embraced menopause with a healthy lifestyle that included a good diet, exercise, and stress management.

“I went through menopause late and uneventfully,” Susan told WebMD. “A lot of people I knew were on hormone replacement therapy…but I never went down that road.”

After menopause hit at age 54, like many menopausal women, Susan’s metabolism changed and she found she was accumulating more weight around the middle. In response, she cut back on carbohydrates and when she indulged, chose whole-grain products over refined grains such as white bread and pasta.

Another tip from Susan? Ignore the aging process and instead focus on saving the world. “When you’re engaged in the bigger picture, you can’t afford the space to become so self-involved that everything is a crisis for you,” she says.

Wait a minute. Unlike myself, Susan has admitted that she didn’t have major menopausal symptoms. But all right, all right. Maybe she does have a point. There’s more to life than hot flashes!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine:  At the time, did you find Brad PItt attractive or was he too much of a “boy”

Photo by David Shankbone.

Kim Cattrall, Still Telling It Like It Is

Kim Cattrall, Still Telling It Like It Is

 Hot Flash Heroine Kim Cattrall, “I see menopause as the start of the next fabulous phase of life as a woman...”

Like many women, I got to know Kim Cattrall as the Golden Globe award-winning star of the HBO series, Sex and the City. She played Samantha Jones, one of four glamorous, fashionable, sexy, and single gals in New York City. The four girls never ceased to shock viewers with their provocative dialogue and brazen ways. Samantha took the lead and, as we all know, had tons and tons of sex in that city.

Nonetheless, in the movie, Sex and the City 2, even racy, free-spirited Samantha had to face menopause. Perhaps, it wasn’t too big of a surprise since the TV show was famous for addressing taboo subjects like sex, relationships, and orgasms. Why not tackle the big M-word too?

In real life, Kim, at age 58 is attacking menopause head-on by teaming up with Pfizer Inc., makers of prescription menopause treatments, as part of a new US awareness campaign, Tune In To Menopause.

She has confessed in the past that menopausal symptoms were more disorienting, overwhelming, and even humbling than she had anticipated. On Tune In To Menopause’s website, Kim compares hot flashes to diving into a pot of boiling water. However, even with all the bothersome menopausal symptoms, Kim manages to keep a positive attitude.

“In short order, I reached out to my doctor,” she explains on the site. “She reassured me and explained my hot flashes, and said that she would help me through menopause…that we would go through this together. I learned more and started to ‘tune in’ to my body…I relaxed, made adjustments, and realized I could manage this.”

“I see menopause as the start of the next fabulous phase of life as a woman,” she adds. “Now is a time to ‘tune in’ to our bodies and embrace this new chapter. If anything, I feel more myself and love my body more now, at 58 years old, than ever before.”

I find this all oddly reassuring. If Kim Cattrall, as a sex symbol, can handle menopause, so can we. Right?

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Just what (or who) were you thinking about when you were having all those on-screen orgasms on Sex and the City?


Photo:  Kim Cattrall at ЯEFLECT – 18th CFC Annual Gala & Auction. Photo by Trevor Haldenby. To learn more about the Canadian Film Centre, please visit: cfccreates.com

Why Is My Tongue on Fire?

Why Is My Tongue on Fire?

Ladies, may you NEVER experience Burning Tongue Syndrome...

Okay, time to talk about those odd perimenopause symptoms I’ve never experienced but am utterly fascinated by their absurdity.

Let’s start with the burning tongue syndrome, also known as burning mouth syndrome. From what I’ve read, this is no joke. A serious, painful condition, this syndrome is characterized by a burning sensation not only on the tongue, but on the gums, lips, inside of cheeks, and the back of the mouth or throat.

In other words, it’s like that 60s Johnny Cash song: “I went down, down, down, and the flames went higher. And it burns, burns, burns, the ring of fire. Or it’s Disco Inferno all over again – burn, baby, burn. Or, for you younger perimenopausal women, how about the 80s song, “Burning Down the House,” by the Talking Heads?

I mean, REALLY? Isn’t it enough that we menopausal women are brought to our knees with hot flashes, heart palpitations, mood swings, and insomnia? Must we also feel like our tongues are on fire?

Sorry ladies, but it only gets worse.

Although the pain is usually minimal in the morning, it gradually escalates through the day until it can reach almost unbearable levels. Add to all that fun, burning tongue syndrome can also give food a bitter, metallic type taste. You can’t even enjoy your comfort foods without consequences with this lovely little side effect.

And just try explaining this burning tongue thingy to your loved ones when they already think menopause has caused you to go off your rocker.

The exact cause of burning tongue is not fully understood; however, as with all our other menopausal woes, the fluctuating hormone levels and lack of estrogen is thought to be responsible. Estrogen plays a role in the production of saliva. As I mentioned in my article, Dueling Dragon Breath, this can cause bad breath – as well as your mouth feeling like it’s on fire – which I guess makes the term ‘dragon breath’ all the more applicable.

Don’t shoot the messenger, girls. I never claimed it was fun and games here in menopause land. So what can you do to treat burning tongue syndrome? You can try the following recommendations:

  • Supposedly the cure to all menopausal symptoms, drink more water, of course.
  • Chewing sugar-free gum and sucking ice may bring some temporary relief.
  • Avoid acidic foods like tomatoes, orange juice, and coffee as well as spicy foods. Also limit carbonated beverages and alcohol which can dehydrate an already dry mouth.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Practice good oral hygiene.
  • Prescription pain medication is available as a last resort.

What else? As usual, a sense of humor is your first line of defense! Hum Disco Inferno if it helps.

Baby boomers who want to learn more about finding their bliss, can visit Julie’s blog.    

Dastardly Dragon Breath

Dastardly Dragon Breath

WebMD suggests looking and smelling your dentist floss after you use it. YUCK! I guess if this renders you unconscious or worse, you’ll know there’s a problem.

Since menopause have you noticed that your breath now requires prescription strength Tic Tacs?

In previous blogs, I’ve mentioned how menopause transforms us into severely dehydrated beings deprived of any moisture due to hormonal changes. Therefore, we’re blessed with dry skin, dry eyes, and dry lady bits. But let’s not forget one more blessing: dry mouth which can lead to oral odor. Yippee! Does the fun ever stop on this road to menopausal madness?

Maybe you don’t think this article applies to you. Hate to pop your bubble, but here’s the harsh truth. You may have breath that could peel paint and not even know it. This is a critical time when you must depend on the honesty and kindness of friends and family to let you know that your breath is capable of killing the dog. Good luck with that. Let’s face facts; your loved ones are not going to risk a menopausal meltdown by telling you.

So how do you know if you have dragon breath? Here are five tip-offs:

  1. You win every argument with hubby or the kids in two seconds flat.
  2. You sing to your grandbaby and he or she starts crying.
  3. When you lean over to whisper something in your best friend’s ear, she politely insists that she already knows what you’re going to say.
  4. Your dentist recommends rinsing with industrial strength ammonia.
  5. When you yawn, your teeth duck.

Okay, just one more funny joke I happened to see on the Internet:

“You know you have bad breath when the pastor prays for everybody in church and instructs you not to say amen.”

Joking aside, how do you really know if you have delightful dragon breath? WebMD suggests looking and smelling your dentist floss after you use it. YUCK! I guess if this renders you unconscious or worse, you’ll know there’s a problem.

Sorry girls, there’s just no way to get poetic about stinky mouth. “Halitosis” and other common terms just don’t seem to cut it. But don’t lose hope. There are ways to prevent this embarrassing problem:

  • Once again, gug-a-lug water, my menopausal madams. As I mentioned in a previous article, drinking lots of water is also good for that pesky menopausal bloating problem and it will help with dragon breath as well.
  • Chewing sugarless gum or sucking sugarless candy can also stimulate the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles, bacteria, and keeps your mouth moist.
  • Practice good oral hygiene and see your dentist regularly.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Rule out other contributing factors such as diet, medications, and dental problems.

None of those sound like fun. To conquer bad breath, the ancient Greeks reputedly used home remedies like rinsing with white wine. Now, there’s a solution I could get into.

Whoopee for Whoopi!

Whoopee for Whoopi!

We salute Whoopi's take on life!

Who doesn’t love Whoopi Goldberg? Her roles in movies like ‘The Color Purple’, ‘Ghost’ and ‘Sister Act’ have catapulted her to fame and entertained us. But what I love most about Whoopi is her fearlessness when it comes to being honest about menopausal symptoms.

It’s so dang refreshing!

Case in point: The actress and comedian, age 59, has openly confessed to having hot flashes more than once while co-hosting on The View. After a serious segment on the attack on the U.S. embassy in Libya in 2012, she announced, “I just had a big ol’ hot flash!” You could see Barbara Walters squirming in her chair but I was cheering her on as I watched at home. Down-to-earth Whoopi – who also admits she “spritzes” and pees her pants when she laughs or sneezes – added, “And my underwear is wet. So I have to go.”

She has also talked openly about how menopause has changed the way she feels about sex. Whoopi told Contact Music, “My sex drive has totally changed. One minute I’m like, ‘Yeah! I can’t wait for it.’ The next I’m saying, ‘Oh God, go away.’”

Yup, been there, done that.

Maybe I’m not quite as open about “spritzing” as Whoopi, but I do think women need to talk more about our menopausal woes. Let menopause out of the closet! True, we don’t all have exactly the same symptoms, but by sharing our experiences and what we’ve found to be helpful, we can learn from each other. We can support and guide each other through this transitional and sometimes confusing time of life.

And isn’t it good to know we’re not all alone? So whoopee for Whoopi! Let’s talk more frankly about menopause!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Be honest now. Did you get some kind of perverse joy from making the powerhouse Barbara Walters squirm on The View?

Photo Attribution:  Photographer is Daniel Langer, dlanger on flickr.com. Copyright is held by Daniel Langer and Comic Relief, Inc. – http://flickr.com/photos/dlanger/310838776/

Author Archives: Julie Gorges

HotFlash Heroine- Francis McDormand

HotFlash Heroine- Francis McDormand

"I'm interested in starting the conversation about aging gracefully and how, instead of making it a cultural problem."

I loved the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, Olive Kitteridge, which fearlessly featured older, cantankerous, and unglamorous characters. Although I haven’t seen the HBO miniseries yet, I can’t wait to see Frances McDormand as the book’s protagonist. One of my favorite actresses, Frances won an Academy Award for her role in Fargo and was nominated for Mississippi Burning, Almost Famous, and North Country. The 58-year-old also frequently collaborates with her husband, filmmaker Joel Coen in his films.

The character in her latest role, Olive, doesn’t mince words, and neither does Frances.

“The body suit I had to wear on hot days … that didn’t help with hot flashes,” Frances said in an interview for NPR. “We played with different sizes of body suits from the beginning of the storytelling. And we decided to start with my body — I weigh 150 pounds, I’m 5 feet, 5 inches. At the time we shot, I was pretty much on the other side of menopause — though, as we know, it never ends.”

Yes, we do know, Frances, and we totally empathize.

Frances also reflects on menopause when describing her character, Jane, in the movie, Friends with Money, which she describes as a woman in menopause mode. “Menopause in not an overnight event,” she said. “It can take years. And it’s a kind of hormonal activity that makes you crazy and not interested in sitting in chairs, but instead you want to walk around a lot. You really get tired of doing things like combing your hair and being socially nice. You say things out of turn or get too loud and opinionated at times. You experience those kinds of things and that’s where we come in on with Jane.”

Frances is not only honest about menopause but is also blunt about aging and cosmetic surgery in Hollywood. In an interview with The New York Times she announced, “I have not mutated myself in any way.” She added that her husband, director Joel Coen, “literally has to stop me physically from saying something to people — to friends who’ve had work. I’m so full of fear and rage about what they’ve done.

“One of the reasons that I am doing press again after 10 years’ absence is because I feel like I need to represent publicly what I’ve chosen to represent privately — which is a woman who is proud and more powerful than I was when I was younger. And I think that I carry that pride and power on my face and in my body. And I want to be a role model for not only younger men and women — and not just in my profession, I’m not talking about my profession. I think that cosmetic enhancements in my profession are just an occupational hazard. But I think, more culturally, I’m interested in starting the conversation about aging gracefully and how, instead of making it a cultural problem, we make it individuals’ problems. I think that ageism is a cultural illness; it’s not a personal illness.”

As she said in the interview for NPR, “I want to be revered. I want to be an elder; I want to be an elderess.”

Yea! I love this woman. Let’s embrace getting older. I want to be an elderess too!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Exactly which friends had cosmetic surgery that made you feel so enraged? Inquiring minds would love to know. Names please.

 

 

Photo Credit:  By Red Carpet Report on Mingle Media TV [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

It’s Wine or Whine

It’s Wine or Whine

I don’t care if wine makes my hot flashes worse. I don’t care if wine makes me fatter and my Buddha belly bulge.

Warning, Will Rogers! I will whine if you mess with my wine.

I don’t care if wine makes my hot flashes worse. I don’t care if wine makes me fatter and my Buddha belly bulge. I don’t care if wine makes me more dehydrated contributing to my already dry, itchy skin. And I don’t care if wine makes my fuzzy brain even fuzzier.

Leave me alone!

Ever since menopause hit, my friends and family don’t even ask questions. When I visit, they just start pouring. My neighbors know that I can hear a wine cork popping from 100 yards away and anticipate an impromptu visit to borrow “a cup of sugar.” My ever-patient husband greets every menopausal meltdown with the phrase: “Here, have some wine.”

Like everything else, of course, I blame menopause for becoming a wine enthusiast. Oh, I would love to say that I’m handling menopause in some kind of sophisticated yoga, meditation, exercise way or that I use one of those other trendy relaxation techniques to relieve stress. But it’s hard to prove that point when I’m on my second glass of wine right now.

Besides, can’t we count running late to happy hour as exercise? And in menopausal land, doesn’t a balanced diet mean a glass of wine in each hand? And didn’t I read somewhere that we don’t want to look at the glass half empty?

I’m not alone, and as always, I find that fact reassuring. How do I know? Because there are actually menopause wine charms, bottle wine chillers, and flasks just for us menopause madams (http://www.cafepress.com.au/+menopause-humor+wine-charms) with humorous tags such as “Something’s making me hot. Unfortunately it’s not you.” And “Warning! Woman Under the Influence of Testosterone.”

And let’s not forget about Hot Flash Wine (http://hotflashwines.com/wines/), and yes, there’s actually such a thing, with labels like Mood Swing Merlot, Covers Off Chardonnay and Zin-o-Pause. (Well, there MIGHT be, no surprise, last time I checked, they were out of stock! No surprise, right?)

So ‘fess up. Hasn’t your appreciation for fine wine increased since good ol’ menopause took up residence in your body? The answer to all of menopause woes may not be at the bottom of a wine glass, but most of us check.

Baby boomers who want to learn more about finding their bliss, can visit Julie’s blog.   

Does Menopause Cause Irritating Male Syndrome?

Does Menopause Cause Irritating Male Syndrome?

It's tough enough to go through menopause, why do the men in our lives have to be so irritating? Shall we turn those tables? Bwahaha!

Don’t let the title mislead you. I’m not talking about Male Menopause which is sometimes called Irritable Male Syndrome.

Yes, there’s such a thing. Like that joke, “If it’s called MENstruation and MENopause, so why don’t MEN have it?” True, men don’t have periods, but studies show they do have a form of male menopause. Evidently, due to a drop in testosterone as they age, men can have some of the same symptoms as us – weight gain, memory loss, diminished libido, hair loss, fatigue – plus a couple that thankfully we can’t have as females such as erectile dysfunction. We have enough troubles with our own female parts without worrying about that one as well.

But let men whine about this male menopause thingy on their own blogs – because my articles are about MY complaints and MY symptoms and MY menopause. I can’t imagine that male menopause is as bad as our menopause – but if it is, I don’t want to hear about it.

So this article is about irritating male syndrome – as I said, not male menopause – but about how males make US irritable during menopause.

Because while it’s true everyone infuriates us during menopause, no one can annoy us more than the men in our lives. Clueless on how to calm us down during our menopausal meltdowns, they usually manage to do and say all the wrong things. You’ve probably heard that joke: “It’s called menopause for a reason. MEN should PAUSE before they speak.” But they never seem to learn.

“You’re being a bit sensitive, aren’t you?” “Those pants look kind of tight.” “Why are you in such a bad mood?” “Aren’t you feeling better by now?” “Why don’t you… (input a thousand lame suggestions to try and solve this whole menopause thing).”

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve got a great husband. But since even delightful men can be annoying at times, we women have to take some kind of action to make ourselves feel better.

So what can we do when we’re suffering from Irritating Male Syndrome? Annoy our husbands, of course, so they can feel and understand our pain of feeling exasperated and enraged all the time.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. Okay, admittedly, this first one is kind of mean. But my husband goes poop regular as rain – once and sometimes even twice a day – while I often suffer from meno-stipation. This is irritating enough on its own, but when hubby says something super annoying on top of this whole regular bowel movement thing, it’s time to get serious. So, when we get down to the last roll of toilet paper in the entire house – I hide it in the back of the pantry. When he desperately yells for help, I pretend I don’t hear him. Now some husbands won’t notice for several days, but if you have a hubby like mine, this one works like magic. (Yes, we DID just talk about poop on HFD.)
  2. Does your husband sleep soundly while you’re up all night with insomnia and then dares to ask why you’re so cranky in the morning? Sometimes my hubby is guilty of this one. So, I eat cookies on his side of the bed. Set his alarm for 2 a.m. and blame the grandkids. Stick my finger in his ear while he’s sleeping. Wedge marshmallows between his toes. If your husband snores like mine, try putting a little Tabasco in his mouth. Get creative and have some fun since you’re up anyway!
  3. Sell his stuff at your next garage sale. This one drives my hubby, who is a pack rat, absolutely wild. Or if I’m not that brave and the offense is more minor, I move his wallet and keys off his nightstand where he usually keeps them and put them somewhere else. Then I pretend I’m sleeping while he gets ready for work in the morning and thinks he’s getting senile because he can’t remember where he puts his stuff. Give him a taste of fuzzy brain! Tee hee.
  4. Leave his boxers and socks in the washing machine for a couple of days. My husband helps with the laundry sometimes, so this one doesn’t always work for me. But if you have a husband that rarely does laundry, he won’t notice until he puts on his undies and they smell nice and damp and moldy.
  5. This one is fitting punishment for mild annoyances. I wait until my hubby is deeply enthralled in one of his favorite shows like Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe or Shipping Wars. Then I sit down, preferably across from him, and I list all the chores that he’s said he’d do around the house. And hasn’t. As a final touch, I ask for a sip of his beer and drink every last drop.

There you go, five remedies guaranteed to make you feel better about the whole Male Irritable Syndrome thing. Bahaha! Plan your revenge and have fun!

Oh, and I’m sure you have some even better ideas, so please, post them for us all!

Menopausal Sweat? That too, that too….

Menopausal Sweat? That too, that too….

Think you're more sweaty and stanky than before? Well, you're right. The list of symptoms continues, ladies...

Are you so stinky you make Right Guard turn left, Secret spill its guts, Sure uncertain, and Speed Stick slow down?

According to researchers, a change of body odor is another one of the fun symptoms we menopausal women may have to endure.

Although I’m a bit suspicious. Should we really trust these experts who apparently have nothing better to do than sniff sweaty arm pit pads of women hitting the mid-century mark?

Evidently, these experts tested menopausal sweat and lived to tell the story. They went on to write reports on how our hormone fluctuations can cause a false message to be sent to our ‘hypothalamuses’ – the part of our brain that controls body temperature. Then voila!

We ever-so-lucky menopausal women get to experience those wonderful hot flashes along with an increase in sweat production which results in changes in our body odor. On top of that, panic attacks and anxiety make us sweat even more, causing even skunks to run for their lives.

So what’s a menopausal stinky woman to do?

Before you move permanently into the bath tub, keep all the windows open no matter the weather, or glue your elbow to your waist, try the following tips:

  • Take a bath or shower daily. Yes, it sounds simple, but don’t overlook the obvious. This isn’t the time for a quick 60-second shower either. Take the time to be thorough and use lots of soap.
  • It’s time to leave the 70s in the past. Stay away from polyester and multi-blends. Stick to natural breathable fabrics like cotton and linen which gets rid of body odor by absorbing sweat instead of trapping it against the body.
  • Sorry ladies, but here’s the bad news. Although normally harmless in moderation, during menopause any amount of alcohol can negatively impact your body odor. The odor of alcohol itself can be secreted through the skin and raise your body’s temperature causing you to sweat even more. Do I dare say it again? Drink water instead. SORRY.
  • Try some changes in your diet. Cut back on strong spices like garlic as well as coffee. A lack of dietary magnesium and zinc can also contribute to body odor. Eat healthy foods rich in magnesium like spinach, nuts, seeds, and fish along with excellent sources of zinc like lean meats, poultry, oysters, beans, chickpeas, eggs, cashews, and almonds.
  • If you smoke, this is a great time to stop since it just makes the whole menopause odor thing worse. Plus, it can kill you.
  • Various underlying conditions like diabetes or kidney problems can also cause body odor changes. If you’ve noticed a significant change, see a doctor to determine if the problem could be caused by a medical condition.
  • I know, with hormones raging giving you erratic mood swings that can cause whiplash, this isn’t easy – but try not to stress which just causes you to sweat more.

So there you have it. Follow some of these tips and try not to sweat too much over this stinky, stanky, sweaty menopausal problem. If you find yourself fanning your armpits, you certainly aren’t alone.  As a cartoon I saw said: “A lady doesn’t sweat. She sparkles.”

Let’s go with that.

Julie Walters, Hot Flash Survivor!

Julie Walters, Hot Flash Survivor!

As many as 15 hot flushes a night! But still optimistic. A true Hot Flash Heroine.

Like many of you, I came to know Julie Walters for her role in Educating Rita in 1983 which earned her an Academy Award nomination, a BAFTA, and a Golden Globe. She also starred in Billy Elliot, Calendar Girls, Mama Mia!, and played Molly Weasley in seven out of eight of the Harry Potter films.

I loved Julie in her role as Rita, but here’s why I love Julie as a person – besides the fact that she has the same lovely first name as me. Like myself, she suffered from menopause symptoms for more than a decade. Oh, how I can relate!

Insomnia – my biggest complaint about menopause was also hers. “My sleep has always been a bit fragile but it was very bad through that time and trying to work at the same time,” she says in an interview for the Daily Mail.

I feel you sister.

In addition, Julie admits she suffered from as many as 15 hot flushes (as they say in England) in a single night.

“I still get hot flushes,” she told Nina Myskow in an interview for Saga Magazine. “That’s 15 bloody years. Still, it’s nothing like I did then. Ripping off your nightie and Grant thinking it’s something else! ‘No – don’t get any ideas!’ Oh God, weird! It was like a chimney and came from the base of my spine. I was doing this TV called Murder, and every take there’d be, ‘Stop! She’s having a flush!’ At the National, I’d come off stage for a quick change and have to shout, ‘Garth, the tray!’ And this guy would come with this big tin tray and fan me. Harry Potter, I was in a wig and padding, and they had to put this big tube of air conditioning in my face.”

The stories sound funny, but Julie confesses it was dreadful. I’m loving this woman more and more.

Do you suffer from fuzzy brain like me? Take comfort. During a live question and answer session with fans, Walters discussed how hard she found filming for the movie musical, Billy Elliot, saying,

“It was awful, and I couldn’t get the steps right. It was the menopause again, I don’t want to go on, but it was. I went up to the end of the room, and I’ve never done this on a set before or since, and cried. But anyway I had to come back and face everybody. It was just terrible. Anyway we got it right in the end.”

Her honesty is so refreshing and I feel so much better knowing I’m not alone. The other reason I love Julie is because she gives us all hope. Those of you who like me who spend years – yes, I’m talking years and years – in menopausal mayhem and hormonal hell can be reassured that the future looks bright.

Now 64, Julie says she feels liberated and better than ever.  “If you deal with it in a healthy fashion then I think you come out the other side a better person,” she says. “I’ve got so much more energy now than I ever had in my early 50s before the menopause.”

A healthy lifestyle for Julie included cutting down on alcohol (say it isn’t so!) and she credits acupuncture with helping her manage her symptoms. So there you go. There is hope at the end of the tunnel. By the way, as icing on the cake, Julie looks fabulous in her post-menopausal years!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: How in the world did you get through menopause without wine? Not that I plan on trying it – just curious.

Photo Credit:  “Julie Walters 2014 (cropped)” by Christopher William Adach from Mexico – The Harry Hill Movie – Julie Walters-1. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Julie_Walters_2014_(cropped).jpg#/media/File:Julie_Walters_2014_(cropped).jpg

Susan Sarandon, Menopause? No problem.

Susan Sarandon, Menopause? No problem.

Ignore the aging process and instead, focus on saving the world.

Thelma & Louise took my breath away.

This revolutionary film starred two women well past their prime by Hollywood’s standards. Yet, they were still portrayed as sexually attractive. Their personal transformation, self-discovery, and empowerment made this a potent movie. And who can forget the scene when they drive off the cliff together holding hands? Oh my! The movie was just one of Academy award-winning Susan Sarandon’s great roles.

Considering her reputation as an outspoken political activist, perhaps it’s no surprise that this 68-year-old dynamo took menopause by the bullhorns. Believing in aging gracefully, she rejected the idea of hormone replacement therapy and embraced menopause with a healthy lifestyle that included a good diet, exercise, and stress management.

“I went through menopause late and uneventfully,” Susan told WebMD. “A lot of people I knew were on hormone replacement therapy…but I never went down that road.”

After menopause hit at age 54, like many menopausal women, Susan’s metabolism changed and she found she was accumulating more weight around the middle. In response, she cut back on carbohydrates and when she indulged, chose whole-grain products over refined grains such as white bread and pasta.

Another tip from Susan? Ignore the aging process and instead focus on saving the world. “When you’re engaged in the bigger picture, you can’t afford the space to become so self-involved that everything is a crisis for you,” she says.

Wait a minute. Unlike myself, Susan has admitted that she didn’t have major menopausal symptoms. But all right, all right. Maybe she does have a point. There’s more to life than hot flashes!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine:  At the time, did you find Brad PItt attractive or was he too much of a “boy”

Photo by David Shankbone.

Kim Cattrall, Still Telling It Like It Is

Kim Cattrall, Still Telling It Like It Is

 Hot Flash Heroine Kim Cattrall, “I see menopause as the start of the next fabulous phase of life as a woman...”

Like many women, I got to know Kim Cattrall as the Golden Globe award-winning star of the HBO series, Sex and the City. She played Samantha Jones, one of four glamorous, fashionable, sexy, and single gals in New York City. The four girls never ceased to shock viewers with their provocative dialogue and brazen ways. Samantha took the lead and, as we all know, had tons and tons of sex in that city.

Nonetheless, in the movie, Sex and the City 2, even racy, free-spirited Samantha had to face menopause. Perhaps, it wasn’t too big of a surprise since the TV show was famous for addressing taboo subjects like sex, relationships, and orgasms. Why not tackle the big M-word too?

In real life, Kim, at age 58 is attacking menopause head-on by teaming up with Pfizer Inc., makers of prescription menopause treatments, as part of a new US awareness campaign, Tune In To Menopause.

She has confessed in the past that menopausal symptoms were more disorienting, overwhelming, and even humbling than she had anticipated. On Tune In To Menopause’s website, Kim compares hot flashes to diving into a pot of boiling water. However, even with all the bothersome menopausal symptoms, Kim manages to keep a positive attitude.

“In short order, I reached out to my doctor,” she explains on the site. “She reassured me and explained my hot flashes, and said that she would help me through menopause…that we would go through this together. I learned more and started to ‘tune in’ to my body…I relaxed, made adjustments, and realized I could manage this.”

“I see menopause as the start of the next fabulous phase of life as a woman,” she adds. “Now is a time to ‘tune in’ to our bodies and embrace this new chapter. If anything, I feel more myself and love my body more now, at 58 years old, than ever before.”

I find this all oddly reassuring. If Kim Cattrall, as a sex symbol, can handle menopause, so can we. Right?

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Just what (or who) were you thinking about when you were having all those on-screen orgasms on Sex and the City?


Photo:  Kim Cattrall at ЯEFLECT – 18th CFC Annual Gala & Auction. Photo by Trevor Haldenby. To learn more about the Canadian Film Centre, please visit: cfccreates.com

Why Is My Tongue on Fire?

Why Is My Tongue on Fire?

Ladies, may you NEVER experience Burning Tongue Syndrome...

Okay, time to talk about those odd perimenopause symptoms I’ve never experienced but am utterly fascinated by their absurdity.

Let’s start with the burning tongue syndrome, also known as burning mouth syndrome. From what I’ve read, this is no joke. A serious, painful condition, this syndrome is characterized by a burning sensation not only on the tongue, but on the gums, lips, inside of cheeks, and the back of the mouth or throat.

In other words, it’s like that 60s Johnny Cash song: “I went down, down, down, and the flames went higher. And it burns, burns, burns, the ring of fire. Or it’s Disco Inferno all over again – burn, baby, burn. Or, for you younger perimenopausal women, how about the 80s song, “Burning Down the House,” by the Talking Heads?

I mean, REALLY? Isn’t it enough that we menopausal women are brought to our knees with hot flashes, heart palpitations, mood swings, and insomnia? Must we also feel like our tongues are on fire?

Sorry ladies, but it only gets worse.

Although the pain is usually minimal in the morning, it gradually escalates through the day until it can reach almost unbearable levels. Add to all that fun, burning tongue syndrome can also give food a bitter, metallic type taste. You can’t even enjoy your comfort foods without consequences with this lovely little side effect.

And just try explaining this burning tongue thingy to your loved ones when they already think menopause has caused you to go off your rocker.

The exact cause of burning tongue is not fully understood; however, as with all our other menopausal woes, the fluctuating hormone levels and lack of estrogen is thought to be responsible. Estrogen plays a role in the production of saliva. As I mentioned in my article, Dueling Dragon Breath, this can cause bad breath – as well as your mouth feeling like it’s on fire – which I guess makes the term ‘dragon breath’ all the more applicable.

Don’t shoot the messenger, girls. I never claimed it was fun and games here in menopause land. So what can you do to treat burning tongue syndrome? You can try the following recommendations:

  • Supposedly the cure to all menopausal symptoms, drink more water, of course.
  • Chewing sugar-free gum and sucking ice may bring some temporary relief.
  • Avoid acidic foods like tomatoes, orange juice, and coffee as well as spicy foods. Also limit carbonated beverages and alcohol which can dehydrate an already dry mouth.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Practice good oral hygiene.
  • Prescription pain medication is available as a last resort.

What else? As usual, a sense of humor is your first line of defense! Hum Disco Inferno if it helps.

Baby boomers who want to learn more about finding their bliss, can visit Julie’s blog.    

Dastardly Dragon Breath

Dastardly Dragon Breath

WebMD suggests looking and smelling your dentist floss after you use it. YUCK! I guess if this renders you unconscious or worse, you’ll know there’s a problem.

Since menopause have you noticed that your breath now requires prescription strength Tic Tacs?

In previous blogs, I’ve mentioned how menopause transforms us into severely dehydrated beings deprived of any moisture due to hormonal changes. Therefore, we’re blessed with dry skin, dry eyes, and dry lady bits. But let’s not forget one more blessing: dry mouth which can lead to oral odor. Yippee! Does the fun ever stop on this road to menopausal madness?

Maybe you don’t think this article applies to you. Hate to pop your bubble, but here’s the harsh truth. You may have breath that could peel paint and not even know it. This is a critical time when you must depend on the honesty and kindness of friends and family to let you know that your breath is capable of killing the dog. Good luck with that. Let’s face facts; your loved ones are not going to risk a menopausal meltdown by telling you.

So how do you know if you have dragon breath? Here are five tip-offs:

  1. You win every argument with hubby or the kids in two seconds flat.
  2. You sing to your grandbaby and he or she starts crying.
  3. When you lean over to whisper something in your best friend’s ear, she politely insists that she already knows what you’re going to say.
  4. Your dentist recommends rinsing with industrial strength ammonia.
  5. When you yawn, your teeth duck.

Okay, just one more funny joke I happened to see on the Internet:

“You know you have bad breath when the pastor prays for everybody in church and instructs you not to say amen.”

Joking aside, how do you really know if you have delightful dragon breath? WebMD suggests looking and smelling your dentist floss after you use it. YUCK! I guess if this renders you unconscious or worse, you’ll know there’s a problem.

Sorry girls, there’s just no way to get poetic about stinky mouth. “Halitosis” and other common terms just don’t seem to cut it. But don’t lose hope. There are ways to prevent this embarrassing problem:

  • Once again, gug-a-lug water, my menopausal madams. As I mentioned in a previous article, drinking lots of water is also good for that pesky menopausal bloating problem and it will help with dragon breath as well.
  • Chewing sugarless gum or sucking sugarless candy can also stimulate the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles, bacteria, and keeps your mouth moist.
  • Practice good oral hygiene and see your dentist regularly.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Rule out other contributing factors such as diet, medications, and dental problems.

None of those sound like fun. To conquer bad breath, the ancient Greeks reputedly used home remedies like rinsing with white wine. Now, there’s a solution I could get into.

Whoopee for Whoopi!

Whoopee for Whoopi!

We salute Whoopi's take on life!

Who doesn’t love Whoopi Goldberg? Her roles in movies like ‘The Color Purple’, ‘Ghost’ and ‘Sister Act’ have catapulted her to fame and entertained us. But what I love most about Whoopi is her fearlessness when it comes to being honest about menopausal symptoms.

It’s so dang refreshing!

Case in point: The actress and comedian, age 59, has openly confessed to having hot flashes more than once while co-hosting on The View. After a serious segment on the attack on the U.S. embassy in Libya in 2012, she announced, “I just had a big ol’ hot flash!” You could see Barbara Walters squirming in her chair but I was cheering her on as I watched at home. Down-to-earth Whoopi – who also admits she “spritzes” and pees her pants when she laughs or sneezes – added, “And my underwear is wet. So I have to go.”

She has also talked openly about how menopause has changed the way she feels about sex. Whoopi told Contact Music, “My sex drive has totally changed. One minute I’m like, ‘Yeah! I can’t wait for it.’ The next I’m saying, ‘Oh God, go away.’”

Yup, been there, done that.

Maybe I’m not quite as open about “spritzing” as Whoopi, but I do think women need to talk more about our menopausal woes. Let menopause out of the closet! True, we don’t all have exactly the same symptoms, but by sharing our experiences and what we’ve found to be helpful, we can learn from each other. We can support and guide each other through this transitional and sometimes confusing time of life.

And isn’t it good to know we’re not all alone? So whoopee for Whoopi! Let’s talk more frankly about menopause!

What we’d like to ask if we’d had a few glasses of wine: Be honest now. Did you get some kind of perverse joy from making the powerhouse Barbara Walters squirm on The View?

Photo Attribution:  Photographer is Daniel Langer, dlanger on flickr.com. Copyright is held by Daniel Langer and Comic Relief, Inc. – http://flickr.com/photos/dlanger/310838776/

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©2016 Hot Flash Daily. All rights reserved.

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HotFlashDaily.com was created in the spirit of making every day your very best, even when you just don’t feel like it.

The site was conceived and built through the combined efforts of contributing bloggers, technicians, and impassioned women who believe the way we treat ourselves is a direct reflection of how we feel about ourselves.

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