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Workforces are urged to provide greater support for menopausal women
April 7th 2015
Recent research has suggested that women are being forced out of their jobs due to a lack of support when going through the menopause - but experts say this can't continue
A new government report has recently revealed that employers are failing to support older women who are going through the menopause.
Written by Dr Altmann, Business Champion for Older Workers, the report calls for more support for women going through this significant life stage and states that a lack of support is forcing some women out of their jobs.
Dr Altman states the menopause “is not on the work radar. Pregnancy is, childbirth is, bereavement is but [menopausal women] get no support in the workplace.”
“The news that women are being forced out of the workplace because employers are ignoring the impact of the menopause is shocking,” says Dr Marilyn Glenville, the UK’s leading authority on women’s natural health. “The menopause is just a transition in a woman’s life and if given good advice this transition can be comfortable and easy. Women can now live 30 to 50 years past the menopause and they want to live that with a good quality of life.”
“If women are told how to cope and manage this stage in their lives, then they can be very productive and efficient at work. They have the experience and maturity to do their jobs well and can be very valuable assets to a company. The menopause should be ‘on the work radar’ because it not only helps women feel well and healthy at this time in their lives, but also helps the company retain and utilise the valuable experience of productive and efficient women.”
The average age in the UK is 51 but the menopause can start as early as 40 or as late in life as 55. The menopause typically lasts for about 7 years, but some women can experience symptoms for up to 14 years. Common symptoms can include; hot flushes, night sweats, irritability, declining libido, osteoporosis, weight gain, depression, lack of energy, ageing skin, hair loss, vaginal dryness, mood swings.”
When asked what initiatives and support employers could introduce to make it easier for women to manage their symptoms and stay in full time employment Dr Glenville has said, “I think it would be brilliant if employers could bring in someone like myself to give a ‘training’ day for women on how to cope with the menopause. This information day should be open to all women in the company, no matter what their age, because if they are given good advice earlier on and prepare for the menopause then they can move through this transition easily and comfortably. It would be of value to the women definitely but also to the employers as they will then be keeping a valuable member of staff who wants to stay in full time employment who is healthy, productive and efficient. And with the renewed general health will come less absenteeism across the board for these women.”