For many women struggling with symptoms of menopause, traditional medical interventions are not effective at resolving the symptoms and, in some cases, can even make them worse. And it’s because of this that more women are looking for alternative ways to treat menopause naturally.
But it’s not all doom and gloom, there’s good news on the horizon. Ongoing research into CBD and menopause shows that the cannabinoid may offer significant relief and resolution of many of the common symptoms. So, if you, like many others transitioning into menopause, are struggling with a range of symptoms, CBD might just be the answer.
What is menopause?
Menopause is a natural part of ageing for women and usually occurs between the ages of 45 and 55 as your oestrogen levels decline. During this time periods become less frequent over the course of a few months or years, and then stop altogether. In general, menopause is caused by a change in the balance of the body’s sex hormones as your ovaries stop producing as much oestrogen and you no longer release an egg each month.
Most women experience menopause symptoms which can vary from mild to severe and at their worst can impact your everyday activities. The most common symptoms include night sweats, hot flushes, vaginal dryness, low mood, anxiety, reduced libido, problems concentrating and difficulty sleeping. The symptoms can start a long time before your periods stop, and last for many years after your last period.
What is the best way to treat menopause naturally?
If you experience extreme menopausal symptoms, it may be necessary to use hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to replenish oestrogen levels, but most women choose to make natural changes to their lifestyle. This can include eating a healthy, well-balanced diet, exercising regularly and starting cognitive behavioural therapy (talk therapy) to address symptoms of low mood and anxiety. Increasingly, women are also turning to alternative health supplements such as CBD to manage their symptoms.
How can CBD help with menopause?
1. Hormonal Imbalances
Cortisol levels may rise during the later stages of the menopause, causing feelings of anxiety and stress, which can be exacerbated by lower levels of oestrogen.
CBD has been shown to regulate the secretion of cortisol, the stress hormone. For people who use broad-spectrum or full-spectrum CBD, there is also the added benefits of omega fatty acids and gamma-linolenic acid which have hormone-regulating properties.
2. Anxiety and Depression
Menopausal women are more likely to develop anxiety and depression, but help is at hand. CBD has been shown to effectively reduce anxiety, as well as having anti-depressant effects. There are several studies that have links the interaction of CBD on the body’s endocannabinoid system with stress and anxiety reduction.
A study conducted in 2019 looked at the effects of CBD administered to menopausal women. They noted a success rate of over 78% for relieving anxiety-related issues and a 66% success rate for addressing signs of depression.
3. Skin Conditions
Menopausal acne and rashes are common symptoms. This is thought to happen as testosterone in the body is no longer counterbalanced by oestrogen, which causes the skin’s sebaceous glands to work overtime. CBD can help as it suppresses acne breakouts by regulating oil production in the sebaceous glands. It also lowers skin inflammation which can improve conditions such as skin rashes, eczema and psoriasis,all of which can flare up during menopause.
Along with many other changes that menopause causes, unpleasant symptoms can include bloating, cramping and inflammation, which impacts digestion. It’s estimated that a third of women going through menopause struggle with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).
CBD’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties can target IBS-related inflammation, as well as reducing bloating and boosting digestion.
More than 60% of women between the ages of forty and sixty report feeling muscle and joint pain, making it one of the most common symptoms in menopausal women. CBD has been shown to reduce pain and inflammation, and may therefore help promote a better quality of life.
Hot flashes, coupled with higher levels of stress and anxiety can lead to disrupted and poor-quality sleep. Unfortunately,sleep quality affects many different areas of our lives and disrupted sleep can exacerbate other symptoms of menopause.
CBD is often used, therefore, to relax the body and mind as you prepare to go to bed, allowing you to sleep better as well as helping to regulate sleep cycles.
Many women experience vaginal dryness during menopause which leads to painful sex, and this, coupled with hormonal changes, can lead to a lower libido. CBD-infused products can help address the symptoms as well as the underlying causes. For example, CBD oil can be used for relaxation and to reduce anxiety, while lubricants and sprays can alleviate dryness and pain.
Because of the wide range of CBD products available, they can be used to relax the body and mind, set the mood, reduce performance anxiety and increase pleasure.
The seven most common symptoms of menopause include anxiety and depression, digestive issues, pain and inflammation, insomnia and sexual issues and, for many women, the only option has been to grin and bear the discomfort and wait for menopause to end.
But the introduction of CBD to the UK market, and the accompanying growth in the product range of CBD-infused options, means that help is at hand. This all-natural alternative is making waves as more and more women choose a safe, effective product that offers real relief for their menopause-related signs and symptoms.