Last week, we had a few of “those” days in Baltimore – we almost tipped 100 degrees in the dog days of summer after one of the mildest summers in my life! 7 a.m. was hot. 11 a.m. was on fire and so was I. Some of the simplest things in my handbag have become my new friend or you can say even my new lover… like my hair clip!
I have shoulder length layered hair with a mixture of high and low lights. I have always loved my hair… for many women, you understand me, right? In my 30’s and 40’s, I had strangers compliment me on my hair, cut, style, color… a bit has changed since the BIG 50!
Over the past year I have noticed that my hair is dry and not as easy to blow-dry. Then there is the grey strand that really appeared overnight and not just at the root! I am talking an entire 8-10 inches of a full grey strand. Hello! What the heck? Well today, I was coiffed in a chic pants outfit with leopard heels and then… it. hit. me. Starting with my face, back of neck and then the hair – hot flash on top of heat and humidity in Baltimore… what’s a woman to do???
Gotta love my new lover, a tortoise french clip that I can just twist, clip and go! I started laughing in my car as I was driving to an event to speak on a panel about women starting businesses, having courage, patience, passion and persistence to stay on course no matter the uphill battle. Oh how the universe is talking to me about the changes that are starting to surface in my own body and life with menopause at fabulous 50… the uphill battle, right?
I started thinking back to when I was eighteen and seeing my mother with the back of her short hair always wet! Fans always seemed to be blowing in the bedroom, kitchen, and living room. Now I am really laughing because I had no idea what was really happening… I just wanted to escape then and perhaps, now too.
This brings me to the articles I have been writing about this passage in our lives, deep thought-provoking conversations I’ve had with other women, and how embracing this stage in our life cycle seems to be one of the best approaches. I am not saying tough up and just endure. I am loving learning about new studies, treatments and healthy eating and exercise that can eliminate some symptoms. And, I also know the more we honor our bodies with new alternative therapies, the better we may be able to weather the storm.
Luckily I found Andrew M. London, M.D., a leading gynecologist, partnered with Leonard R. Derogatis, Ph.D. and created The Maryland Center for Sexual Health (MCSH) in Lutherville, Maryland. Dr. Derogatis has been an attending psychologist with the Johns Hopkins Sexual Behaviors Consultation Unit for over 35 years and was its director for a number of years. Dr. London, The Associate Director of the MCSH, also trained at Johns Hopkins and was Chief Resident in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Hopkins. Both clinicians have extensive experience and interest in understanding and treating sexual problems. Research and technology has yielded many new advances in the treatment for hot flashes. I found a pharmaceutical company who announced in September, 2013 a pivotal phase three trial of a bio-identical natural progesterone treatment. I have educated myself on the pros and cons of Bioidentical Progesterone vs. Non Bioidentical Progestin. Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy (“HT”) are reporting less signs of the risks associated with breast cancer, more favorable on lipid profiles (cholesterol), improved carbohydrate metabolism (glucose/insulin) and improved sleep efficiency and mood. I see light at the end of the tunnel!
MCHS is participating in this phase three trial. Currently, recruiting women, between the ages of 40 and 65, are experiencing discomfort from the first signs of sweating to persistent sweating and/or months or years of experiencing hot flashes. Substantial financial compensation is awarded for your time to participate. The rewards just might out weigh the financial return! To learn more and stay up to date on topics, trends and additional studies Click Here.
MCSH conducts an extensive range of therapeutic clinical drug trials, evaluating the therapeutic efficacy of new drugs for the treatment of numerous sexual problems with women in various stages of menopause in Baltimore.
As I laugh again to myself, I think of my mother in 1982. She did not have access to the vast resources and alternative therapies and treatments I have today. Many strides in research have changed the playing field for women’s sexual health and no doubt, there will be more to come. Anyone who knows me will tell you, I have never liked a “bad hair day” but today, at 50, letting my hair grow a bit longer to be in love with my tortoise french hairclip is not so bad!