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La ménopause, je vous hais.

Arghhhhhhhhhhhh.

Why doesn’t it just get on and get it over.  It’s been hanging around, on and off for 2 years and from what I have read, it may continue to be present for another 10 years!   There are many negative symptoms and I have yet to find a positive.   Lots of information on the internet about menopause yet very little about changes to sense of smell related to menopause, and how to deal with that.

Menopausal Madness

I also had this weirdly heightened sense of smell that just drove me nuts. It changed the way I ate and how I interacted with the world. I felt like I was changing into something un-human.”

Lack of information on internet

A few women here have mentioned smelling smoke or petrol and an overall heightened sense of smell. I experience this pretty badly and so looked at Google yesterday to try to work out what hormone is involved and was pretty surprised and annoyed because there is so little information there,

Brain Freeze

  • During menopause women sometimes experience fuzzy thinking, forgetfulness and a loss of concentration. The brain freeze that some women complain of can be responsible for sensory problems including loss of smell.

I have had a sense of smell dogs would kill for, and now it is enhanced.  Oh good I hear you say, how lucky you are.  No, not lucky, as not only is it enhanced but many things are now tainted with an unpleasant smell that puts me off eating.  Aha, good I hear you saying, perhaps you’ll lose some weight,  Not so unfortunately, as in an attempt to disguise the smells wafting around me, I want to eat sweet things that don’t have the same impact.

I know I haven’t damaged my olfactory nerve, and I haven’t abused it by over use.  For over 30 years I have not liked perfume, and have avoided being around people over loaded (it seems to me) with heavy perfumes.  After Shave doesn’t get to live in this house, and husband has to pass any hygiene products by me before purchase so I can say yes or no.  For most of the time we have been together he’s used Botanics range from Boots which my nose finds acceptable.  Anything beyond that is a no no.  Even liquid soaps have to be checked out.  The other day I stood at the cash-desk with a couple of soap refills and suddenly realised I could smell them, and could smell the smell I hate that are in some liquid soaps.  I left the cash-desk and returned them to the shelf and had to wait to get home to wash the smell from my hands.

I first noticed the tainting issue around food products (meat products mainly)

back in October and blamed it on the sausages I’d bought from a farm shop in Kent.  The smell and subsequently taste (since they are inter-dependant) was horrible, enough for me to contact the farm shop by email and ask how they were storing their meat products.  I have since realised it’s me.   Similar to the woman above, I also frequently feel I am surrounded by exhaust fume smells.  In fact this was so bad that I asked my daughter to bring back a Carbon Monoxide alarm from the UK in December (they’re cheaper there).  Of course there is no smell to CO and the alarm sits now on the dresser silently reminding me all is well.  This exhaust fume smell thankfully has reduced in the last 2 weeks.

Of the usual negative menopausal symptoms, this for me is the worst, as I am unable to address it.  Hot flushes can be addressed with a choice of remedies, not all chemically based.  A friend recommended some herbal tablets which work really well for “les bouffées de chaleur”, there are many types on the market.   But what about the change in my olfactory abilities.  I’ve tried having essential oils diffusing nearby (in fact I might try that again shortly) but these don’t last for long.

Writing this means I have done some more searching on the internet and having looked at some of the possible symptoms, I think I’ll get off now please!

Menopause Indicators

Ahh, these ladies sound just like me, I am not alone!

Over Active Sense of Smell

I too, have had a very keen sense of smell my whole life. I drive my family crazy as I get migraines very easily from what I consider toxic fumes: perfumes, hand creams, smoke, cleaners, mechanic fluids, etc.

So, there we are, and I am not going to even mention the mood swings, the irritability and tearfulness.

Be careful as you close the gate, there’s creosote on it and that smell lingers for ages.

a bientot.

Kathy the Sane,  suffering with  hyperosmia and  dysosmia along with hormone shifts.

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About kathythesane

Lived in Kent, then Devon, now France. Trained as a Mental Health Nurse in Canterbury, then at Training South East (Sandhurst) in Transactional Analysis with Alice Stephenson (dec'd) , Suzanne Boyd and Mellie Lewin. Managed a Private Psychiatric Nursing Home for very mentally ill patients in Devon for 3 year before retiring to France in 2006.

2 responses »

  1. Kathy-I could hug you! What you have written so eloquently describes so well my hyperosmia! Actually made me smile and not feel alone-nobody I know seems to understand how debilitating this is-and unfortunately my husband thinks I am making this up! Grrrrr! Thanks for helping me not feel alone, even if there is no cure.

    Reply
    • Hug accepted 🙂
      It was good to understand what was going on (and still is, although the odd smells are more organic now).
      I hope you’re soon through to the otherside of menopause.

      Reply

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