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Women’s Health

Why perimenopause signs and symptoms aren’t always clear



Heather Corinna, a 51-year-old Chicago resident, received a $ 10,000 medical bill after visiting the emergency room several years ago. Corinna, identifying as non-binary, thought she was having a heart attack. What they experienced wasn’t a heart attack, but a hot flash – a big one.

“So few people in the medical community are trained to do this,” they said. “I was given a whole bunch of tests that I probably didn’t need because no one said, ‘You’re in your 40s, you have a uterus – did you think this could happen?'”

With hindsight, Corinna, author of What Fresh Hell Is This ?: Perimenopause, Menopause, Other Indignities, and You, put all the symptoms she’d experienced up to this diagnosis together, and it all made sense. According to the American College of Gynecologists, perimenopause is the length of time before menopause characterized by changes in the menstrual cycle, sleep problems, vaginal dryness, and hot flashes. Nicole E. Williams, MD, a gynecological surgeon at The Gynecology Institute of Chicago, said that some of the early symptoms of perimenopause mimick a variety of other common health problems.

“Perimenopause is something that I think doctors, even gynecologists, don’t like to discuss,” she said. “Symptoms start in your thirties. Combine this with the fact that the most common symptom of perimenopause is irregular periods – it’s easy for a doctor or even a patient to overlook or ignore them, attributing this normal physiological change to stress, diet, or other reasons. “

Another major perimenopause symptom that Williams sees in her patients is night sweats and even symptoms of depression just before their period. Such symptoms can appear years before actual menopause, she said.

The symptoms of perimenopause are not uniform

When we think of menopause, we think of hot flashes. The transition to menopause is also marked by these sudden and intense feelings of heat all over the body, but somewhat less often. The actual symptoms of perimenopause vary widely.

Jill Leonard, 52, of Vancouver, Canada, said her perimenopause symptoms actually looked like rarer and more serious health concerns. “My hair loss could have been a sign of hypothyroidism, but post-sex bleeding could herald anything from uterine polyps to cancer,” she said.

One of the main barriers to diagnosing perimenopause is that the term itself is very vague, which creates a lot of problems with the way we talk about perimenopause as well as the symptoms, said Los Angeles-based gynecologist Sarah Yamaguchi, MD used to cover the hormonal changes women go through when they are about to miss their periods. There is no strict definition of perimenopause in terms of symptoms, ”she said. “Many women attribute any change in their health in their 40s to perimenopause, but that’s not always the case.”

Because it’s a gradual process, there isn’t a single test that helps diagnose the onset of perimenopause, according to the Mayo Clinic.

“Most of the time when we’re in we can’t find out how long we’ve actually been around because it’s not really one of those things that you can take a test on or where there is a certain ending,” said Corinna. “I’ve probably been in perimenopause for about seven to nine years now.”

Even that is difficult to track. The US Department of Health’s Bureau of Women’s Health defines perimenopause as the transition to menopause, or the time before your last period.

Treatment of symptoms of perimenopause

Doctors agree that any symptoms that interfere with daily life are worth treating. “We often overlook or downplay symptoms such as irregular periods or PMS and count them with normal shifts. While it may be normal, if symptoms persist or affect a woman’s life it is important to take that into account as these symptoms can and should be addressed, ”Williams said.

Yamaguchi notes that treating symptoms depends on what they are. “Treatments range from simple over-the-counter lubricants for vaginal dryness to hormone supplements,” she said. “Common symptoms include changes in their periods, vaginal dryness, and hot flashes, but women can also experience changes in their mood, decreased libido, headaches, weight changes, insomnia, and many other things.”

Race and gender differences present challenges

Racial and gender differences also present challenges in how we talk about perimenopause. According to a 2019 study in the Journal of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology, up to 80% of women experience vasomotor symptoms or hot flashes and night sweats during perimenopause. However, black women experience it an average of 10 years before menopause, compared to 6.5 years for white women. Yamaguchi recommends discussing these symptoms with a gynecologist. Doctors can prescribe medication to reduce hot flashes.

There is also the overlooked symptom that particularly affects trans and non-binary people who are transitioning into menopause: dysphoria. Gender dysphoria, or the psychological distress a person experiences when their gender assigned at birth and their gender mismatch, is something Corinna struggled with during her transition into menopause. “I had to upgrade my therapy level because I actually had dysphoria, although that doesn’t usually happen to me,” they said.

Corinna explained that people with dysphoria often need to avoid resources and information about perimenopause and menopause because it would cause emotional pain. “Even for cisgender women, there has been a lot of talk about menopause in the past who talked about gender in a way that has led to some gender identity crises,” they said.

Studies show that women who have had their ovaries removed or have decreased ovarian function due to PCOS report feeling “less of a woman”. Studies that specifically focus on perimenopause in this regard are not readily available. Corinna stresses, however, that such a close link between reproductive function and gender identity hinders conversations about perimenopause.

“I think it really benefits everyone better if you talk about it more fully and talk about perimenopause and menopause as something that happens to people.”


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Women’s Health

This non-profit is closing the gap between women and fertility awareness



Feminae Vero educates women about the truths of their reproductive health and how it relates to faith.

Mary Kate Knorr did not expect that she would stand up for the unborn child to raise awareness of the fertility of women. But the longer she worked for the cause of life, the more meaningful it made.

“I’ve seen that the pro-life movement hasn’t done enough to address the huge problem we have in our country and around the world with artificial hormonal birth control,” Knorr said in an interview with Aleteia. “That was a big gap for me – and I felt personally called to address it.”

That call led her to found Feminae Vero, a nonprofit dedicated to fertility education and other means of supporting holistic women’s health, with a particular focus on the connection between faith and health. Knorr said “Feminae Vero exists to serve, educate and evangelize girls and women about the truths of their reproductive health and their connection to our Catholic faith.”

Feminae Vero is a new company for Knorr. Her background is in politics and pro-life, and she served for many years as the executive director of Illinois Right to Life. She launched Feminae Vero in January 2021.

Women will find a wide variety of services at Feminae Vero, including the following:

  • Education about fertility
  • Doula services
  • Healing retreats
  • Representation of interests with elected officials and medical professionals

So far, the backbone of their work has been fertility education and it seems that this is the area where the organization can make the greatest impact.

Two projects that are currently in progress are particularly exciting. One of these projects is the creation of a curriculum for middle and high school girls to learn more about their reproductive health and its importance in Catholic education. This curriculum has the potential to be wonderful empowerment and usefulness for girls at an important stage of development.

As Catholics, we know that faith and honest science go hand in hand. ” said Knorr. “It is one facet of our philosophy to go ahead with science to teach girls and women about their bodies and then move on with the truths of faith to ultimately attain evangelization.”

It might seem strange to think that fertility education would lead to evangelization, but Knorr saw a real connection between the two. During her time in the pro-life movement, she made one key observation: “Most of my colleagues who have previously made an election have had a spiritual conversion in addition to their ideological one.” She said.

As they stood up for life, they also became Christians and, in many cases, Catholic. “Abortion is not entirely a logical problem,” said Knorr. “It’s a heart problem too.”

The second project is a curriculum for seminarians and clergy. “A future goal is to develop a program for seminarians and clergy that enables them to better support girls and women from a ministerial point of view”, said Knorr. This project sounds like a critical force for good: sometimes there is a discrepancy between what the church teaches about women’s health and what local clergy understand about that teaching, so this project will help bridge that gap to bridge.

There are many things in the life of modern women that are physically and spiritually toxic. Knorr hopes Feminae Vero will be a refreshingly holistic and positive resource.

“One of my main goals in founding Feminae Vero was to offer women a healing hand.” She said.

There are so many voices in society today who have deeply hurt women by lying to them about their origins and God’s plan for their bodies. Through our healing retreats and the service and education we want to offer women, our goal is to take women by the hand and initiate them into a healing process.

Ultimately, that healing comes from Christ. “It is the Lord who does the healing,” she explains.

That is why we place so much emphasis on evangelization as the primary goal. We believe that when shared with prayer and compassion, the truth leads women to Jesus Christ – and once they meet the Lord, their healing will be inevitable.

Knorr wants women to know that God created them with profound purpose and purpose. “The objectification and abuse of women in our culture is a result of human decline,” she explains, “but the theology of the body of John Paul II tells us that we are meant for more.”

Her goal for Feminae Vero is to help women discover that purpose and intention. She says, “Women can find such immense healing in the arms of Jesus Christ.”

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Women’s Health

Task force tackles problems that slow women’s success in workforce | Business News



Cora Faith Walker, Chief Policy Officer of St. Louis County Executive Dr. Sam Page, speaking at a community meeting on Tuesday. September 14, 2021. She leads the advancement of the District Board’s political priorities by providing an integrated approach to policy development and external engagement.

Childcare. Wage gaps. Education. Health care.

These topics were included during a town hall in Florissant on Tuesday, September 14th, to gather input from local women on topics and factors preventing them from fully participating, moving forward, or being successful among the workforce.

The lunchtime event was organized by United Women’s Empowerment (United WE) and the Missouri Women’s Economic Development Task Force at the city’s Civic Center.

Wendy Doyle, United WE CEO, said the organization is hosting a number of these town halls across the state to provide policy recommendations to leaders and lawmakers that will be sent to them in late 2021.

She said her organization’s goal is to collect the qualitative data from women to link it to quantitative research on working women in Missouri. Some of this data includes statistics such as that 44% of all Missouri counties have no recognized childcare facilities and that of the total Missouri women population, 15.4% are below the poverty line, compared with 12.9% of men. The organization also found that 18% of Missourians living in poverty were under 18 years of age.

Wendy Doyle, United WE CEO, said

“Above all, we wanted to have informed conversations as we approach the pandemic recovery because we know women have been severely affected.” Wendy Doyle, CEO of United WE, called. “And we just want to hear their stories.”

Dawn Gipson, Diversity Director at Centene, spoke during the small group sessions about how the pandemic is doing for their truly enlarged women lifting heavy loads both outside and inside the home. She also noted that people may be scared of going back to work after working from home for over a year.

“So there is this fear of going back to the office, but the focus is on ‘We need to get back to normal,'” she said, noting that women and people of color may not want to interact on a daily basis with people who are not tolerant or respectful of people’s identity.

Cora Faith-Walker lives in Ferguson and is Chief Policy Officer of the St. Louis County Executive’s Office. She agreed with Gipson and said the shutdown was so much more than just a shutdown.

“People think we can just snap our fingers and go back to 2019,” she said, adding that she almost felt like she forgot how to small talk while working remotely Office involved.

Dawn Gipson

Dawn Gipson

Finally, the small groups ended their conversation for a full group discussion that addressed the main barriers encountered during the small discussions: access to affordable childcare; same salary; Access to adequate health care; Access to equity; Teach children at home or help with their virtual education; and try to keep the household together even when working outside the home.

“Above all, we wanted to have informed conversations as we approach the pandemic recovery because we know women have been severely affected,” said Wendy Doyle, CEO of United WE. “And we just want to hear their stories.”

United WE’s November report said that due to the decline in the industry during the COVID-19 pandemic, Missouri could potentially lose 48% of its childcare offering, meaning there is only one place available in a licensed daycare for six children.

Faith-Walker later addressed the challenges faced by the county executive in obtaining pandemic aid to childcare providers.

“Another type of challenge we had with vendors was probably the amount of technical support that was sometimes required to take advantage of opportunities like the PSA programs,” she said.

The organization held two talks before Tuesday – one in Joplin and one in Sedalia. Several others are planned, including October 6 in Kansas City; October 14 in Kirksville; and October 28th, held virtually, and will highlight the needs of women of color.

For more information or to register, visit

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Women’s Health

Notts dad created emotion posters and wrote book after son suffered mental health problems during pandemic



A father of three from Nottingham has set a goal of raising £ 10,000 this year to buy Christmas gifts for cared children.

David Rogers, 50, first started his charity mission when his son suffered from mental symptoms during the pandemic and felt he wanted to do something to help other children who have no one to talk to.

The designer, who lives near Newark and owns a shop in Nottingham city center, first set out to create emotional posters to help young people open up.

David Rogers has his own children’s book “Have You Heard of Jelly Bean Juice? to raise money for children in care

“During the pandemic, our son Milo, who is 10 years old, had some mental health problems,” explains David.

“He was able to open up to me and we got support, but I thought of other children who may not be able to speak easily, or their parents who, through no fault of their own, are not.” sure how to communicate about these things.

“We set out to research and design posters that would help children point to the faces that are sad or angry, that most reflect their feelings, just to start a conversation.

“We sold them to raise some money for charity, but we also gave them away to schools, parents, teachers and children.

“They have had a storm and we have had really great feedback on how they have helped kids get into conversation, even if it’s the smallest kind, it’s a start and hopefully it will make a difference.

“We have now also made posters for teenagers.”

David and his company created posters to help children identify their emotions and speak

David and his company created posters to help children identify their emotions and speak

David’s charity efforts began a few years ago when he decided to raise money for children in social institutions on Christmas Day. He would get their Christmas lists and go to work raising the money to fulfill them.

Last year he was able to help three homes, but this year he has bigger ambitions and has published his own children’s book to pay for Christmas gifts in 10 different children’s homes.

“For the past 4 years I have tried to give children a wonderful Christmas Day in social institutions. They are asked to give me a list of how lucky most children are, and then I use the money to buy gifts. We also use whatever is left to help blackboards, women’s shelters and gifts, toiletries and groceries in the run up to Christmas.

“I helped a children’s home for the first three years, last year I managed to help three, but this year my dream is to help ten.”

To achieve his goal, David needed a plan – and then he remembered a children’s story he had written that languished on his laptop.

“I wrote the story for my son for fun, but I’m a designer, not a writer, so I’ve never done anything with it,” says David, who is also the father of Lewis, 16, and Charlie, 6.

“But when I was thinking about how to raise money, the book seemed like a good idea because I knew I could have it designed and printed through my business, keep everything local, and not pass these costs on.

“It has been produced to a really high standard, is beautifully illustrated and printed in Nottingham, and every single penny that is raised goes straight to the charity campaign.”

The book, Have You Heard of Jelly Bean Juice? was inspired by bath times with his son when they mixed up different hand washes, resulting in strange and wonderful colors and a mixture that smelled like jelly beans.

Ever heard of Jelly Bean Juice?  Is for sale to raise money for cared children this Christmas

Ever heard of Jelly Bean Juice? Is for sale to raise money for cared children this Christmas

“It’s a bit of fun with a group of animal lovers at the center of a party, including a Siberian moose named Bartholomew. At one point an accident happens and jelly bean juice is spilled all over the place. Then jelly bean juice is created and one of the guests decides Mindy, whose father’s name is Mr Big Shot, that they can market and sell it. “

David and his wife Annabelle have been selling the books through word of mouth and their Instagram accounts for two months and have already raised £ 6,500.

But David wants to hit his £ 10,000 goal by the end of November.

“I firmly believe that these children can have the same experiences at Christmas as other children and I want to help more,” he says, a crucial time for women fleeing their homes with children. We will also support boards and, if possible, charities for the homeless. “

David’s wife Annabelle, who is also a designer, has supported him with all aspects of publishing and selling the book through her popular Instagram account @designermumetc and David himself can be found at @shopperdave_.

The book costs 8 pounds including postage and packaging and is already on its way all over the world.

“We got two orders from Florida, that’s great, and we’ve now sold around 300 books in total.

“It was very important to me to create something good quality so that for a charity donation people would get a really nice product and so far the buyers seem to love the book which is a good feeling.

“But it will feel better when I reach my goal and can give these children a Merry Christmas in 10 social institutions. That is the most important thing.”

As part of their charity work, David and his company also produce luxury tea towels with maps of popular UK vacation destinations such as North Norfolk, and they also sell the Emotions posters for children and teenagers.

Have you heard of Jelly Bean Juice? Go to Instagram and send a message to @designermumetc or @shopperdave_

Or send an email to

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