Sleep and Menopause
Insomnia and disrupted sleep are one of the more common issues that accompany menopause. Women who are menopausal or postmenopausal will often find that their quality of sleep is lower than it was before menopause. Luckily, there are a multitude of tricks you can use to improve your quality of sleep, and to combat insomnia.
- Eat a balanced diet
Sleep quality is often affected by our diet, so maintaining a healthy and balanced diet will often help improve your sleep quality. Avoid eating large or heavy meals before bedtime, and opt instead for a larger breakfast or lunch. You may find that foods that are spicy or acidic may trigger hot flashes, which can disrupt sleep. Foods rich in soy may decrease the amount of hot flashes you have in a day. Taking note of what you eat and how it makes you feel is paramount to eating what is right for you.
2. Avoid stimulants
Nicotine, caffeine, and even sugar will disrupt your natural sleep cycle and are likely to lead to a lower quality of sleep. Avoid stimulants past 3:00 pm, especially before bed time. Some research suggests that caffeine can stay in your system for up to ten hours, so keep this in mind when reaching for an afternoon cup of coffee.
3. Keep cool
Wear light and flowy clothes to bed to ensure you are not overheating during the night. You may also find that using a fan or air conditioner to keep the room cool will help you sleep through the whole night. Avoid heavy doonas, and instead opt for a sheet or a light blanket when the weather gets cooler.
4. Speak to your healthcare professional
If the above tips are not helping to improve your sleep, speak to your doctor or pharmacist about how they can help to improve your sleep and any other symptoms of menopause.