Did you get a little more relaxed with your schedule this summer? Did you stay up later than usual, indulge in extra sweets and drinks, and have fewer days of rigorous, consistent exercise? When we’re younger, we can get away with this schedule switch for a few months without too many consequences. However, in midlife and beyond, it gets much harder to lose the extra weight and repair the damage to your health. It may be difficult, but it’s not impossible if you know what to do.
Unfortunately these bad habits and inevitable weight gain can also make symptoms of menopause worse. Even more important, these bad habits can lead to silent (and often preventable) health conditions that can make an impact on your quality of life. I’m excited to help you regain control of your life after your fun summer. I think fall is the perfect time to take charge and get things under control again!
The Consequences of Getting Off Track
So, why do I care so much about getting your life back on track? The answer is quite simple: I see so many women who put everyone else first, and the result is their own health and wellbeing suffer. The consequences can be serious: obesity, diabetes, heart disease, dementia, hip fractures, uterine cancer, and osteoporosis. These conditions are often silent and creep up on us because we are too busy to even notice what’s happening to us. That’s why it is so important to take control of our health before it takes control of us. It doesn’t have to happen, and I don’t want it to happen to you!
It starts with being aware of your health and having the tools to live the life you want to live. Start by asking yourself what it is you want to do and how long you want to be able to do it: Do you want to be able to ski or hike, kayak with your friends, be active with your kids or grandkids, enjoy sex with your partner, or fit into your favorite shorts comfortably? Having a vision or a goal can help you get back on track as you get back into your fall routine.
At true. Women’s Health, we offer a unique experience to help you reach your goal and take back control of your health. We have two different wellness programs available for you to choose from—Basic Wellness Program or Complete Wellness Program. Regardless of which one you choose, you will get personalized care from our entire staff. Besides meeting with me, you will have access to Chef Anna Pietrangelo, our Nutrition Coach; Susanne Pettigrew, our Nurse Practitioner; and Amy Rains, our amazing LPN.
Tools to keep yourself on track
In addition to our phenomenal staff, I want to highlight some of the tools we use at true. that can help you turn things around this fall and help you reach your goal:
- true. Women App—As a true. patient, you get access to our App, which includes detailed intake forms, educational videos and content, and thought-provoking questions. Either Susanne Pettigrew or I will read your answers thoroughly before you come in for your first visit. We will have a sense of who you are before you even walk through our office door. In addition, you will have all your lab work done before your visit. We will discuss those results as well. As if that wasn’t enough, you can use the App for telehealth visits, questions for us, or help with symptoms you are experiencing.
- W*A*I*Pointes® Program—This stands for “Who Am I” and represents a method of personalized goal-setting that I created especially for women in midlife and menopause. It starts with identifying your Picture of Self (POS), which is simply your health goal. We help you identify your goal and give you the help you need to reach it.
- SEEDS®—The Seven Essential Elements of Daily Success (SEEDS®) are the basic habits that lay the foundation for healthy aging. We talk about the SEEDS® at your first visit and give you tips to help you incorporate them into your daily life. You even get to track your SEEDS® on the true. Women App to see how you’re doing and where you can make improvements. I’ve also recently released a comprehensive ebook on SEEDS® – download your copy here.
- MTS—The Menopause Transition Scale™ (MTS) is a tool to track your midlife and menopause symptoms. We look at a variety of symptoms and have you rate the degree of bothering each one presents to you. We also get you set up on our App to track these symptoms and see how they relate to your SEEDS®.
- Life Action Plan (LAP)—At your first visit, we help you create a personalized plan to assist you in your journey through menopause; we call this the LAP. It looks at the W*A*I*Pointes® wellness categories and has you determine where you are in each category, and where you want to be.
- I Want to Age Like That! Book and Workbook—As a true. Women’s Health member, you will receive a copy of both the book and workbook. Both of these were designed by me to help women create their Picture of Self. To empower them to make lifestyle changes to reach their goal, and arm them with tools to be successful during menopause and beyond.
- Sex Puzzle Cards—If sexual health issues are bothering you, we will give you a pack of our Sex Puzzle Cards that help you determine your barriers to sex and how to solve the issues. We will discuss the cards that apply to your situation and then send them home with you to use with your partner.
- true. Women’s Health Website—We are so proud of our website! Our Resources and Events tabs provide you with helpful articles, upcoming events, and other tools (like the Symptom Circle©) that can help you live your best life!
We can help
We want you to walk out of our office with a plan to get control of your life. Here at true., we want to be the ones who help you put it all together. You deserve to be at the center of your healthcare—it’s time to take care of YOU! If you feel well, you can do what you want to do, as long as you want to do it. Isn’t it time to put yourself first? Fall is the perfect time to do just that!
By Dr. Diana Bitner