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  • Writer's pictureMonigho Griffin

Menopause Brain fog: 12 (scientific) ways to improve it.


"I completed a phone call and instantly forgot what I agreed to do.”


“I was having a conversation, and my thoughts went blank, and I did not know what to say.”


It had become difficult for me to express myself and understand what was being said.


I started to overthink, and my confidence was at an all-time low.


These are all comments and feelings of some I spoke to those who are experiencing menopause brain fog.


What makes it more worrying is at the time, they did not know it was a peri/menopause symptom.




Menopause Brain Fog


One of the most common Perimenopause symptoms (as per menopause in the workplace survey House of Commons, women and Equalities commitee2021–2022) is difficulty concentrating and remembering.


75% of the respondents complained about this symptom


This is another example of menopause brain fog.


So


What is Menopause brain fog?


What can reduce it?


Is menopause brain fog a sign you will get Dementia?


What is Menopause Brain Fog?


I was finding it difficult to concentrate, so it took me longer to finish work. When this occurs during the transition to menopause, i.e., Perimenopause, it is not Dementia, as I had self-diagnosed.


Still, it is a symptom that comes under the umbrella of Menopause Brain Fog!

Menopause brain fog is a group of symptoms that happens around the time of Perimenopause.


Perimenopause is the symptoms you experience while your body is going through the biological process where women will no longer be able to reproduce due to the decline of the hormones progesterone and Estrogen; this process comes to an end when you reach the point when you have not had a period for 12 months.


Why does menopause brain fog occur?


Brain fog, as a result of declining Estrogen, plays a role in memory and how your brain functions to process and understand information. Declining estrogen levels, such as during menopause, have been associated with changes that lead to difficulties with memory and concentration for some individuals.


Examples of menopause brain fog


Difficult to remember words and numbers,


Disruptions in daily life (misplacing items like keys),


Trouble concentrating


Losing a train of thought, being more easily distracted


Forgetting appointments and events.


Difficulty switching between tasks,


Forgetting the reason for doing something





What can you help improve Menopause brain Fog?


All is not lost. There are plenty of things you can do


1. HRT


studies show when estrogen levels are increased, the symptoms improve, so if you are taking HRT to help hot flushes, for example, it should also enhance your brain fog.IMS-White-Paper-2022-Brain-fog-in-menopause.pdf )


2. Mindset


Once I accepted and stopped masking my brain fog, this unburdened some pressure, I felt less stress and felt my symptoms improved.

Please do not give yourself a hard time.

We don’t expect athletes to perform at their best if injured.

So accept that you will not either. And that your best changes each day.


3. Practical arrangements


Focus on one task at a time and avoid multi-tasking.

Set realistic expectations and note essential events on a calendar.


4. Sleep


Managing Perimenopause symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, and difficulty sleeping can help reduce your menopause brain fog as they impact your quality of Sleep.


5.Heart health = brain health.


Move to get your heart pumping (running, swimming, dancing, walking, cycling). Aim for

150 mins per week


6. Nutrition


Cut sugary, fatty food and replace it with more fruit and vegetables.

Eat more phytoestrogen (plant estrogen), e.g. soy products, i.e. soya milk & soya beans.


7. Manage your stressors


8. Stop smoking & reduce alcohol intake


9. Do not socially isolate yourself. Get involved with a community and or your family.


10. Aim for blood pressure of 120mm HG 18


11. Maintain weight with a BMI of 18–25


12. Keep the brain active by learning something new


These lifestyle changes will reduce the impact of Brain fog. Post-menopause, your understanding will return to normal levels, but you may have some issues remembering.




Menopause brain fog is not the same as Dementia.


Menopause brain fog does not naturally lead to Dementia.

So be reassured that the memory issues you experience are not necessarily early symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease or Dementia.


Prevalence of Alzheimer’s Disease depends on biological sex and geographical location, with higher rates among women than men and higher rates in Europe and North America than in Asia, Africa and South America.”


In the USA, the lifetime risk of Alzheimer’s disease dementia is 19.5% at age 45 years and only increases to 21.1% at age 65 years.


Dementia at midlife is sporadic unless you have a family history of early-onset Alzheimer’s. Of all the women who transition to menopause, most women will not develop Dementia later.


Can you delay or prevent Dementia in later life?


One of the advantages of getting older is that you can make decisions to improve your current health, providing a better foundation for your future health.


If you are concerned about Dementia, there are five risk factors you should be aware of that you can improve.


These Five factors can increase dementia risk by 41–78%, including


Obesity,


Diabetes,


Currently smoking,


Hypertension


High cholesterol.



Conclusion


Menopause brain fog is one of the most common perimenopause symptoms. It occurs because of declining Estrogen. It does not necessarily lead to Dementia.


You can adjust your lifestyle to:


improve your brain health


manage your current health


help your future health


There are lifestyle changes that you can take to help with brain fog today & also to delay or prevent Dementia in later life.

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