Council taking the menopause seriously, and good on them.

Statistics tell us that ultimately all women who reach a certain age – average 51 – will hit menopause. Of these around, 80% will get symptoms from the well-known hot flushes to others like weight gain, low libido, mood swings, insomnia, aches and pains and a whole delightful suite of vaginal and urinary symptoms like burning, pain and incontinence.

It’s good to see that Folkestone & Hythe District Council is taking the issue seriously as more than 50% of employees at the Council are women.

On the 11/01/22 the Council paid £2,148 to Talking Menopause. Talking Menopause is a leading provider of menopause workshops, online learning, webinars and individually tailored programmes helping organisations – such as our council – transform their culture and create menopause confident workplaces.

The ignorant and uninformed all too often describe hormone replacement therapy (HRT) as a “lifestyle drug”which is hugely depressing for all women who rely on it. But that is how some have responded to the current crisis in supply, suggesting women like me – the only female member of The Shepway Vox Team – who use HRT should “just get on with it”. Britain is currently experiencing acute shortages of these drugs, which boost levels of hormones such as oestrogen as women get older and approach the menopause. HRT helps to alleviate the debilitating symptoms associated with menopause, including hot flushes and night sweats.

Here is a good explainer by Dr Lisa Mosconi on how menopause affects the brain.

Over the last few weeks there has been a plethora of stories run across mainstream media about HRT. It was first successfully marketed as a ‘cure’ for menopause in the 1940s before a misreported study crashed sales in 2002. But since then thankfully prescription rates have climbed.

There are two types of HRT medication

Oestrogen-only HRT

Combined HRT

According to Kent & Medway Clinical Commissioning Groups data in excess of 50,000 items of HRT brands have been prescribed in the last 12 months at a cost of more than an half a million pounds. Good value for money, that’s for sure.

It is important for women to be able to tell their story and call attention to the life-changing difference HRT has made for them. The treatment has allowed many women to continue working, carry out their caring responsibilities, live life normally and escape the crippling anxiety that menopause can bring. But the continuing problems with HRT supply, particularly the oestrogen gel that many women use, has left many desperate, swapping products or turning to the internet to get supplies.

As the only woman on the Shepway Vox Team, I can honestly say, the rest of the boys in the TEAM have been amazing, and understanding of me as my mood has swung from high to low and back again. They’ve done private research, run the stats and even visited some events with me, where both the menopause and HRT were spoken about.  Without them, I’d still be walking through a plethora of misinformation, and I thank them for their help.

If you are experiencing the menopause and are looking for a place to find information a good place to start is the British Menopause Society and of course your local GP.

The Shepway Vox Team

Talking about the Menopause is NOT Voxatious.

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1 Comment on Council taking the menopause seriously, and good on them.

  1. Shit, I nearly spat out my tea when I read that headline. But well done to the Council and the Team for raising this important issue.

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