Insomnia and Sleep Disturbances in Menopause

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Sleep Disruptions During Menopause

Do you feel like your sleep is lighter? Is it harder to attain sleep and remain asleeping through the night? It may be caffeine late in the day, or it may be perimenopause.

I bet that at this point you have an excellent sleep hygiene routine (who even thought about that when we were in our 20’s? I have to consider carefully if I should have decaf coffee after 1 pm these days. It has consequences…). And still. Some nights you can’t relax your mind, and despite being tired, exhausted even, you lay awake.

This could be the glass of wine you had with dinner, or the stimulating TV show you watched. But more than likely, Its your hormones. Or, in Chinese Medicine terms, you may experience surging yang qi, or have deficiency taxation. Maybe your qi is stagnant? your yin low?

Hot Flashes and Night Sweats:

Hot flashes and night sweats are the most common symptoms to interrupt sleep. Sudden waves of heat can cause discomfort and awakenings throughout the night. These can be caused by surging upwards of yang qi, which is the body's heat and vitality. Some women have flashes of heat with redness from chest up, including neck and face, with No sweating, while others experience varying degrees of sweating. Diagnostically, the degree of heat and the presence or absence of sweating are important to determine the treatment used.

No sweating indicates that the surface is closed and needs to be opened. in both cases there is an issue with yang and yin fluids, combined with lack of regulation of the opening and closing function of the pores. The body cant cool itself down, or can't keep the heat where it needs to be and it surges upwards. Unanchored heat (yang) means too much heat and sweating in unpredictable (and did we mention uncomfortable) waves.

Basically, the body's ventilation system is off. But what is the issue? Like in an HVAC system, Do we need cooling fluid? is the vent clogged? is the wiring off? A technician usually needs to diagnose and fix the system in order to restore function. The focus of Chinese Medicine treatment of menopause, also translated from Chinese as "climacteric disease", is to restore and correct physiological function. Chinese Medicine works well and safely alongside HRT (Hormone replacement therapy) to restore the proper flow of the fluids and qi.

Deficiency Taxation:

Exhaustion, depletion and fatigue can create deficiency taxation. There are several types of taxation, ranging from overwork and fatigue, to too much sweating depleting yang qi and yin fluids. (yes, that includes hot yoga and excessive sweating while working out). Heavy bleeding during childbirth and menses also causes taxation. Taxation can heavily influence menopause.

Mood Disorders:

Fluctuations in hormone levels can also lead to mood swings and increased anxiety or depression, which are closely linked to sleep quality and can include qi surgoing upwards and causing vexation, agitation and anxiety.

Increased Stress Levels:

Menopause can often bring about a reevaluation of life and self-identity, which, combined with sleep loss, can increase stress levels, further exacerbating sleep problems.

Chinese Medicine Approach to Menopausal Sleep Disruptions:

In my practice, I take a holistic approach to treating sleep disturbances associated with menopause, focusing on restoring balance and harmony within the body. Here’s how Chinese medicine can help:

Herbal Medicine: Herbal remedies are a cornerstone of my treatment strategy. Herbs such as Ziziphus, Rehmannia, and Anemarrhena can be incredibly effective in nourishing kidney yin, clearing heat, and stabilizing the emotions, thereby promoting better sleep. Each herbal prescription is tailored to the individual’s specific symptoms and overall health condition.

Acupuncture: This ancient technique works by stimulating specific points on the body to enhance the flow of Qi (energy) and blood. For menopausal symptoms, acupuncture can help in cooling the body, calming the mind, and restoring sleep patterns.

Lifestyle and Dietary Guidance: I also provide advice on diet and lifestyle that can help manage menopausal symptoms. Incorporating cooling foods, avoiding stimulants close to bedtime, and establishing a soothing nighttime routine are all part of the holistic care.

Chinese Medicine addresses the internal imbalance to restore homeostasis and works well in an intergative setting.

Telemedicine and Local Clinic Visits

Understanding that not everyone can visit the clinic in San Diego, I offer telemedicine consultations to extend care to those who are out of state. During these sessions, we discuss symptoms and treatment options in detail, and I can ship customized herbal formulas directly to you.

My mission is to empower women to navigate the transition of menopause with ease and grace. If you're experiencing sleep disturbances or other menopausal symptoms, remember that you are not alone, and there are natural and effective options available to support you. Whether you prefer a telemedicine consultation or can visit my clinic in San Diego, I am here to provide compassionate, expert care tailored to your unique needs.

To all women navigating this natural phase of life, I offer not just treatments but a partnership in health, helping to restore balance and enhance well-being through every stage of menopause.

In Health,


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