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Slideshow: 10 Ways to Deal With Menopause Symptoms

Hot Flash Cooldown

Keep a diary to track what sets off your hot flashes. Caffeine? Alcohol? A hot room?  Stress? All are common causes. When a flash starts, take slow, deep breaths, in the nose and out the mouth. For tough cases, talk to your doctor.

Freeze Out Night Sweats

At night, hot flashes can go on for 3 minutes or more, leaving you drenched in sweat and unable to sleep. But there are ways to keep your cool. Trade the heavy flannels for light PJs. Put a bag of frozen peas under your pillow. Flip the pillow through the night and put your face on the cool side. Choose layers of light blankets over one thick quilt. Use a bedside fan to keep air moving.

Boost the Odds of Sleep

Yoga, tai chi, and learning to meditate have all been shown to help you sleep. Any exercise can make a difference; just quit 3 hours before bedtime. Skip a nightcap, as alcohol will waken you later. Instead, try sipping warm milk. It contains a substance that can help you relax. Still up? Get out of bed and read until sleepy. If the trouble persists, talk to your doctor about short-term sleep aids.

Give Your Body Help

Hormone changes leave the vagina thinner and dryer, which can make sex painful. Lucky for you, lots of products exist today that can help. Try nonprescription, water-based vaginal lubricants or vaginal moisturizer. You can also ask your doctor about prescription vaginal creams or rings, or prescription pills for vaginal dryness and painful sex. The more sex you're able to have, the better for blood flow, which helps vaginal health.

Nurture That Lost Desire

Make more time for sex. Try massage and other acts short of intercourse. Use erotica and new-for-you sex routines as ways to build desire, too. Other causes besides hormone changes can strike at the same time. Ask a doctor about poor sleep, bladder trouble, or feeling depressed or stressed.

Mood Highs and Oh-So Lows

It's like PMS, only amped up -- crying jags, happy happies, cranky crankies. These are common in women around the time of menopause. And if you had bad PMS, the hormonal changes that happen during this time may cause even bigger mood swings. Yoga and tai chi can help here, too. So can doing things with others that you enjoy. A low-dose birth control pill, antidepressants, and even alternative treatments are sometimes recommended for mood changes.

Head Off Headaches

Migraines can worsen at or around the time of menopause, or show up for the first time. Keep a diary to see what triggers them and if they show up along with hot flashes so you can take steps to lessen them. Eating small meals through the day can help if hunger is a headache trigger. Lack of sleep is another one, so nap if your nights are messed up. Treatments vary and can help prevent migraine frequency or severity. Talk with your doctor.

When Hair Goes Down the Drain

Hair can thin or shed faster. At the same time, it may show up where you don't want it -- on your chin and cheeks. To save what you have, switch to coloring products that don't have harsh chemicals. Avoid the sun, which is drying. Got unwanted facial hair? Ask a skin doctor for to help wax, bleach, pluck, or zap it away.

Zits? Now? Really?

You expect to have acne in your teens but not in your 50s. Surprise: It's common around menopause, too. Make sure your moisturizer, sunscreen, cleanser, and other face products are gentle. Look for the words "oil free," "won't clog pores," "noncomedogenic," and "non-acnegenic." Even tough cases can clear with time and a doctor's help.

Blast Through Mental Fog

"Use it or lose it." That simple phrase can help you fight fuzzy thinking and stay focused during menopause. Challenge your brain in new ways. Learn something new, like a hobby or language. Lowering your stress level can help, too. Women with more hot flashes have more memory complaints.

Menopause and Sex

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD on October 01, 2013

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experiencing moderate to severe painful intercourse

Moderate to Severe Painful Sex Due to Menopause?

Many women experiencing very painful sex after menopause never initiate a conversation with their healthcare providers. But providers can help. Open up and start talking.

find the words to get help

Find the Words to Get Help

Don't live in silence about the changes you face in your menopausal years. Moderate to severe painful intercourse after menopause can often be treated. You are not alone.

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Important Safety Information for Osphena

Most Important Information you should know about Osphena (ospemifene)

Osphena works like estrogen in the lining of the uterus, but can work differently in other parts of the body.

Taking estrogen alone or Osphena may increase your chance for getting cancer of the lining of the uterus, strokes, and blood clots. Vaginal bleeding after menopause may be a warning sign of cancer of the lining of the uterus. Your healthcare provider should check any unusual vaginal bleeding to find out the cause, so tell them right away if this happens while you are using Osphena.

You and your healthcare provider should talk regularly about whether you still need treatment with Osphena.

Call your healthcare provider right away if you get changes in vision or speech, sudden new severe headaches, and severe pains in your chest or legs with or without shortness of breath, weakness and fatigue.

Osphena should not be used if you have unusual vaginal bleeding; have or have had certain types of cancers (including cancer of the breast or uterus); have or had blood clots; had a stroke or heart attack; have severe liver problems; or think you may be pregnant. Tell your healthcare provider if you are going to have surgery or will be on bed rest.

Possible side effects of Osphena

Serious but less common side effects can include stroke, blood clots, and cancer of the lining of the uterus.

Common side effects can include hot flashes, vaginal discharge, muscle spasms and increased sweating.

Tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take as some medicines may affect how Osphena works. Osphena may also affect how other medicines work.

What is Osphena (ospemifene) tablets?

Osphena is a prescription oral pill that treats painful intercourse, a symptom of changes in and around your vagina, due to menopause.

Please read the Patient Information for Osphena (ospemifene) tablets, including Boxed WARNING in the Full Prescribing Information.

OSP13-WWW-038-00 11/13

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