Menopause aches and pains
Around the time of menopause, many women notice an increase in aches and pains in their joints and muscles. These can be related to menopause itself, or to other medical conditions that become more common as we age. Use this guide to find out more about menopause aches and pains, and speak to your doctor if you need further support.
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ACHES AND PAIN DEFINITION
This group of symptoms is very broad, and can include pain, discomfort and stiffness in the joints or muscles of almost any part of the body.
Other types of pain can also be more common around the time of menopause. You can find more information in our articles on Headaches if you are experiencing these.
Start your free online menopause assessment to see if HRT is right for you
HOW LIKELY ARE MENOPAUSE ACHES AND PAINS?
- They are very common
- One study of more than 8,000 women around menopause found that over 60% had muscle and joint aches
- Of these, just over 15% were rated as severe or very severe
Read more about the stages of menopause.
WHAT MAKES ACHES AND PAINS WORSE?
Weight gain & BMI >30
Reduced muscle mass
Mood changes, including depression
HOW CAN YOU REDUCE ACHES AND PAINS?
It really does depend on the cause of your aches and pains. If you have aches and pains that are persistent or severe, talk to your doctor, as many are treatable.
If your aches and pains are put down to menopause rather than any condition in particular, there are plenty of things you can do. Remember to talk to your doctor if you have persistent pain or pain that doesn’t ease. It’s also important to get your doctor’s advice before trying a treatment at home or a new regime.
MENOPAUSE ACHES AND PAINS REMEDIES
- Pilates. Stretch out your muscles and strengthen your bones
- Yoga. A great way to relax and help muscle flexibility. If being on your knees is painful, try padding out your mat with a cushion or towel. You can also experiment with knee pads
- Strength training. If you are in pain, take it easy and start slow and gentle
- Weight loss. Keeping within a healthy weight range will help ease pressure on your joints
- Over-the-counter pain relief. Talk to your pharmacist about what may help. If the pain persists, always talk to your doctor
- Ice. This may help some aches and pains but always consult your doctor
- Massage. When you are aching, a deep tissue massage can really help
CAN HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (HRT) HELP?
Some women may find HRT helpful in reducing the aches and pains associated with menopause. HRT can also improve symptoms that may contribute to chronic pain including mood changes and poor sleep. However, HRT is not suitable for everyone and there is limited evidence that it helps for general aches and pains alone.
Read more about the HRT debate.
SUPPLEMENTS FOR MENOPAUSE JOINT PAIN
Take care if you are considering shopping for natural supplements to help ease your menopause symptoms. The scientific evidence that they work is mixed and often results are from very small studies. Read our guide for more information.
MENOPAUSE ACHES AND PAINS
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