Nora can't keep using estrogen, but she wasn't willing to go back to hot flash desperation.
One of the cruel facts about menopause is that there is no single, magic solution to our symptoms. I’d been stumbling along through my symptoms, annoyed and frustrated, but not totally devastated by them. That changed in January of 2015. That Ohio winter was brutal, as winters go. Like many, I experience a seasonal funk once the gray, cold, rain, and snow just won’t stop. In January, the combination of weather and menopause symptoms became a perfect storm. I had hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, irritability, and loss of libido. I couldn’t stand living in my own skin any more.
Little was ever told to me about menstruation or menopause, and I have no sisters to query on the subject. I thought I was going to tough this out like the generations of women in my family before me. This was, I concluded, as foolish a decision as trying to have a baby via natural child birth. Natural child birth was all the rage at the time my oldest, now 31, was born. When my youngest, now 21, came, I wholeheartedly cried “Bring on the drugs.” Epidurals are wonderful things.
Anyway, in January, I reached a moment of deciding to “bring on the drugs.” I swallowed my pride and approached my doctor. As she prescribed a patch, an insert, a pill, and a topical medication, she shared a humorous meme she’d recently seen at a professional conference. It was a diagram of male vs. female sexual function. The male diagram was a photo of a light switch – on or off. The female diagram was a photo of the inside of an airplane cockpit – a myriad of switches, knobs, buttons, levers, and gauges. “There is no single solution to this,” she told me.
In February, just one month after beginning all my therapies, I had a heart event. Concern that I’d had a heart attack prompted an emergency cardiac catheterization. I was told to stop all menopause hormonal therapies. Great.
Thankfully, my heart issue turned out to be angina rather than a heart attack. Still, my doctor was reluctant for me to restart the estrogen-based portion of my therapies. But I didn’t want to go back to hot flash desperation ever again. She told me about a new product she’d just learned of – Relizen®. She told me that Relizen® was flower pollen-based and already popular in Europe. She told me that it sounded promising for helping women to deal with the hot flashes and night sweats that are such a miserable part of menopause. I trust her. I tried it.
Relizen® helps me. In the beginning I was disappointed; it took more than two months for me to begin to notice a difference. That’s normal, per their web site and the insert in the package. I still have hot flashes, but they are much less frequent, and much less intense. I have had no night sweats since about two months after beginning use of the product. Since I can’t do hormone-based therapies, I’m pleased with the results, and very grateful to feel a little more human.
We live in a society that is focused on instant gratification. One of the things I’ve discovered about natural therapies of any kind, including Relizen®, is that they are almost never instantly effective (except for maybe my Friday night martini – that’s pretty instantly effective!). My advice to women considering using non-prescription support such as Relizen® is to definitely try it, but also to realize that you are going to have to keep the faith. You will not have instantaneous results. The reward, however, of symptom relief from a non-prescription solution, versus using drugs in your system, is always a great choice for your body in my book.
Oh, and a great choice for your mind, too- if you’re someone like me, and hot flashes and night sweats make you crazy!
Editor’s Note: I’ve known Nora and worked with her for years, so when she told me this product worked for her, and we checked out her doctor’s recommendation and the product, I felt we could share this information with you responsibly. Nobody at Hot Flash Daily.com is a health specialist or expert, so always, always, consult the experts who support your health before taking action.