World Menopause Day: Woman says it took five years to convince GP she had menopause symptoms
A woman from Nottingham said it took her five years to convince her GP she had menopause symptoms.
Claire Mann first noticed something was wrong soon after her 40th birthday, as she started to get lots of niggling health problems and couldn't work out why.
Her symptoms included changes to her period, problems with her skin, sleep and bladder.
She went back and forth to the doctor and spoke to friends about how she was feeling and after a couple of years she started to realise that perhaps she was in the perimenopause.
However, it took another 18 months to convince her GP.
Claire says she felt anxious for the first time in her life because of her symptoms
Finally, at the age of 45, she was put on Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) which she said has made a vast difference to her life.
Now, after winning grants at both Nottingham and Nottingham Trent universities, she has launched a new business today on World Menopause Day, to help empower women going through what she did.
Her organisation, called ChangeXtra, will seek to create a community of women to support each other through positive change.
One of her big ideas is to pilot a team of menopause mentors, matching up women who have already been through it with others who are just beginning. She's also keen to see all workplaces giving women the support they need.
And Claire will find out on Friday 22 October whether she's won a share of a prize fund of £15,000 from this year's Engineers in Business Competition.
Quarter of women going through menopause 'considered leaving work'
Menopause at work
In a recent study by The Menopause Society, eight out of ten women said their symptoms affect their work.
Yet more than seven out of ten said they hadn't discussed their symptoms with their employers.
And one out of ten had such a difficult time they left
Timpson praised for offering free HRT prescriptions for workers going through the menopause
Perimenopause means "around menopause" and refers to the time during which a female body starts to make the natural transition to menopause.
This is usually when symptoms start.
Menopause is the time that marks the end of your menstrual cycle. You are said to have reached it when you've gone 12 months without a menstrual period.
There are more than 34 symptoms of perimenopause.
They include difficulty concentrating or brain fog, palpitations, joint pain, night sweats, itchy skin, anxiety and burning tongue.
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