As women approach menopause, many will notice the onset of muscle tension. This is a common menopausal symptom that is a normal part of getting older; however, there are treatments that can help alleviate muscle tension related to menopause.
Women between the ages of 45 and 55 begin to experience hormonal fluctuations that pre-empt the eventual low levels of hormones that set in once menopause has been achieved and thereafter. This hormonal imbalance is responsible for muscle tension prior to menopause. Continue reading to learn more about muscle tension, its causes, and treatment option.
About Muscle Tension
Muscle tension is a menopausal symptom that is closely related to stress and anxiety. Muscle tension is the feeling that muscles are always tight or strained, sometimes to the point of frequent pain, or even persistent and ongoing pain. One can experience tension, pain or cramps in any of the body's muscles as a result of muscle tension. The common symptoms of muscle tension are listed on the right.
Continue reading to learn more about the causes of muscle tension.
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Causes of Muscle Tension
As mentioned above, hormonal imbalance is the primary cause of muscle tension in women approaching menopause. As menopause nears, a woman's body reacts in many ways. Her hormones, primarily estrogen and progesterone, begin to fluctuate as they prepare to settle into low levels for the rest of her life.
Although hormonal imbalance is the main cause of muscle tension prior to menopause, there are other potential causes. They are:
• Past injuries
• Bad posture
Both estrogen and progesterone play a part in causing muscle tension. First, estrogen exercises an inhibitive effect on the stress-hormone cortisol. When estrogen is too low, levels of cortisol rise, raising blood pressure and blood sugar. Extended high levels of cortisol in the face of low estrogen levels causes the muscles in the body to tighten and become fatigued.
Progesterone has a calming effect on the body and mind. When levels of progesterone begin to drop prior to menopause, muscles tend to become tense.
Continue reading to find out the best treatment options for muscle tension.
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Treatments for Muscle Tension
To treat muscle tension in the healthiest manner possible, it's important to explore treatment options that get to the root of the problem without leaving women with harmful side effects. That's why most doctors recommend beginning with lifestyle changes, then moving onto alternative medicines, and if nothing else seems to be working, look to medications or surgery to alleviate the symptoms of muscle tension.
Lifestyle changes are the least obtrusive form of treating muscle tension. A woman who suffers from muscle tension should first try simple muscle stretches. It's also a good idea to make sure to get enough sleep and eat a healthy diet high in nutrients.
Alternative medicines are the next step on the path to treatment. These often involve herbs, vitamins, and supplements. It's important to realize that there are some alternative medicines, sometimes called natural remedies, which will treat the symptoms but not the underlying cause of muscle tension. Because muscle tension is causes largely by hormonal imbalance during menopause, find herbs that help to stimulate natural hormonal production. Another form of alternative medicine that can help alleviate muscle tension is acupuncture or massage.
Finally, some women with exceedingly severe muscle tension will want to turn to medications or surgery for relief. Consult a healthcare professional before administering this treatment option. Although medications might be the only way to attain relief for some women, they typically come with harsh side effects.
Click on the following link to learn specific treatments for muscle tension, which begin with lifestyle changes, move onto alternative medicines, and finally, if those options don't seem to help, medications and surgery. The most effective treatments typically combine lifestyle changes and alternative medicines.
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