All about each symptom of menopause

Crashing Fatigue during Perimenopause

Crashing fatigue during perimenopause can be stressful and interfere with a woman's quality of life. Crashing fatigue differs from chronic fatigue because with chronic fatigue, the sufferer tends to feel tired and lacks energy constantly, while crashing fatigue causes exhaustion to suddenly impact a woman.

Crashing fatigue can be caused by dropping hormone levels.

Why Do Women Experience Crashing Fatigue during Perimenopause?

Menopause can cause crashing fatigue in women. This is because during perimenopause, women's bodies are adjusting to functioning with lower levels of hormones, such as estrogen. The endocrine system makes and secretes hormones like estrogen, and controls many of the body's main functions with the help of this hormone. Changing estrogen levels can cause the body to feel suddenly tired and lose energy, which can lead to crashing fatigue.

When a woman finishes the menopause transition and her body adjusts to the lower levels of hormones present in her body, menopausal crashing fatigue should subside. However, a woman should not have to wait until menopause is complete to regain energy levels. There are several different methods of combating crashing fatigue during menopause.

Managing Crashing Fatigue

The main way to manage crashing fatigue is through lifestyle choices and sticking to a regular and healthy sleep pattern. During the few hours leading up to when you go to sleep, don't eat, drink caffeine, watch TV, play on your phone, or use your computer. Exercises such as yoga, running, tennis, swimming, and other aerobic and anaerobic activity can often help to relieve stress and balance hormone levels in women.

Alternative Treatments for Crashing Fatigue

Herbal supplements can be taken to help women with their crashing fatigue during perimenopause. There are supplements believed to stimulate the body to produce hormones, which may help to battle crashing fatigue and other menopausal symptoms.

Other methods believed to help battle crashing fatigue include aromatherapy, meditation, or massage therapy. Talking to a counselor or therapist may also help if you think your crashing fatigue may be triggered by stress, anxiety, depression, or another psychological problem.

However, little research has been done on crashing fatigue, so it is difficult to say how well any of these treatments will work, and it is suggested you choose options that you feel are best for you and your body.

Recommendations

If lifestyle changes and alternative therapies are not enough to treat your crashing fatigue, it may be a good idea to talk to your doctor. He or she may prescribe you hormone replacement therapy, which is used to abate severe menopausal symptoms, and although it has some concerning potential side effects, it is thought to be safe in low doses if it is not taken for an extended period of time.

If your crashing fatigue is caused by an inability to sleep, your doctor may prescribe sleeping pills if there are no lifestyle adjustments that are helping you sleep soundly. Read more about the different treatments to help with crashing fatigue during perimenopause.

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Sources:
  • Female Menopause Mentors. (2012). Crashing fatigue during menopause [Web video]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nT65sFKWxVw
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014). Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chronic-fatigue-syndrome/basics/definition/con-20022009