Menopausal Arthritis Explained

Common Symptoms and Natural Pain Relief Solutions for menopausal arthritis

Hormonal changes around the time of the menopause can cause a range of physical and mental problems. Some of these, including hot flushes and night sweats, are well known but you may not be aware of the connection between the menopause and joint pain. If your joints ache more than usual, and you are between the ages of 45 and 55, it is possible that you are suffering from menopausal arthritis.

What is menopausal arthritis?

As we age we may experience stiffer joints and generally increased aches and pains but arthritis is specific pain resulting from inflammation inside joints.

In fact the word ‘arthritis’ means inflammation of the joints’ (‘arthro’ – ‘joint’ and ‘itis’ – ‘inflammation’). Menopausal arthritis is arthritis that is brought on or increased by body changes during the menopause.

What can cause menopausal arthritis?

There are two main types of arthritis, and both can be bone pain causes. With osteoarthritis the cartilage that protects the bones in a joint is worn down over time whereas with rheumatoid arthritis it is a flawed response by the body’s immune system that causes inflammation and pain.

As you move through perimenopause towards menopause, some of the physical changes that take place can cause joint pain. For example, if you develop sore finger joints during this time, it could be that menopausal arthritis is the cause.

sore finger joints

There are thought to be a number of reasons for the onset of or increase in menopause joint pain fatigue. These include:

Changes in hormone levels

As you move towards and through menopause your levels of hormones are subject to fluctuation. One of the key hormonal changes that are thought to lead to problems, for example menopausal hip pain, is the drop in levels of oestrogen.

These low levels of oestrogen experienced during menopause may be a factor in menopausal arthritis because this hormone plays a key part in the lubrication of cartilage.

Changes to diet and weight

If you experience weight gain as you go through menopause, you won’t be alone. It isn’t clear whether it is lifestyle factors or hormonal changes that make it harder to keep weight off at this time of life but many women do find it to be an issue.

Unfortunately weight gain can be a factor in menopause joint pain fatigue, particularly with regard to the knees and hips. Carrying extra weight can put a huge amount of additional pressure on these joints, and be a contributory factor to menopausal arthritis.

joint aches

Changes in stress levels

For many women the menopause can be a difficult time when it comes to their mental health. Many of the symptoms experienced at this time of life can be extremely disruptive to everyday life. For example, if you are experiencing short-term memory loss and finding it tricky to think straight, you may well feel more stressed both at work and home.

In stressful situations your body releases the so-called stress hormone cortisol. This hormone prepares your body to deal with difficult situations. One of the ways in which it does this is to stimulate inflammation. This isn’t a problem when stress occurs once in a while but if your menopause symptoms are causing ongoing stress, this inflammation can cause joint issues such as menopause hip pain.

What are the symptoms of menopausal arthritis?

If you are currently going through the menopause, aching legs might not be the first symptom that springs to mind. This is because the links between the menopause and arthritis are not as widely known as some of the more talked about symptoms of the menopause. The symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis differ slightly but both can be bone pain causes.

Symptoms –osteoarthritis

  • Problems moving a joint
  • Stiffness and pain in the joints
  • Grating noises when moving a joint

Symptoms – rheumatoid arthritis

  • Throbbing and aching pain, especially in the morning
  • Stiffness in the joints
  • Redness, heat and swelling in the joints
  • General tiredness and lack of energy

How can a holistic approach help me with menopausal arthritis?

One question we are often asked is, ‘Does menopausal arthritis go away? Unfortunately there are some permanent changes brought about by both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis but there is a lot you can do to limit their impact.

does monepausal arthritis go away

A holistic approach to medical issues takes into account both your mental and physical health, and recognises that your body is an interconnected system. In other words, what happens in one part of your body, including your mind, can have significant impact on another part. There are several approaches you can take that will help alleviate the symptoms of arthritis.

Lifestyle changes

By making sure you live an active and healthy life, you can give your body the best chance it has to deal with a number of menopause symptoms, including menopausal arthritis. Losing weight and eating plenty of fruit and vegetables will help, as will both aerobic and strengthening exercise.

Homeopathy

Homeopathy is a gentle approach to healthcare that encourages your body to act as its own healer. One of the most widely sought forms of conventional medicine, homeopathic remedies are made from natural substances, and are safe, non-addictive and don’t cause side effects.

Homeopathy is known to be successful in treating a number of symptoms related to menopausal arthritis. As well as bringing effective relief to joint problems, homeopathic remedies can assist in rebalancing hormone levels, dealing with stress and anxiety, and rebuilding lost self-confidence.

Reflexology

Reflexology is a very gentle and relaxing therapy that uses gentle massage techniques on the feet to bring about improvements in other areas of the body. Reflexology sessions are particularly calming and a very good way of dealing with stress. As stress is one of the key factors in menopausal arthritis, reflexology can have a positive influence on symptoms.

foot reflexology

Reflexology works on the understanding that certain areas on the feet mirror specific areas of the body. Because of this it is possible, through reflexology treatment, to minimise the joint pain associated with arthritis.

One of the most effective aspects of a holistic approach to health is that it gives us the opportunity to utilise and combine therapies to create a completely individual healing plan. When you visit us we guarantee we will take the utmost care to ascertain your needs and put together the best therapy plan for you.

For expert help in combating menopausal arthritis and a variety of other mental and physical issues using homeopathy, reflexology and psychotherapy, please feel free to get in touch on 07783 140294 and chat about your symptoms.

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