Its 2 am and you are still awake or you have worken up for the third time or even worse you have woken up because it feels like someone cranked the furnace all the way up. Your sleep will change as you are going through menopause, that is a fact. But you need to be aware of what is normal and what is not. You also need to make sure that you get treated for these problems.

In one study almost 60% of people 50+ who had sleep problems were never asked by their doctor about their sleep and were not offered help. Some doctors feel that is because sleep problems are inevitable when we age and others think even if they do ask there is not much that can be done. This is of great concern to me because there are so many people who could be feeling better and have more energy if they knew what was wrong.

The first thing is insomnia. That is a prolonged sleep onset or in laymans terms you spend the night staring at the ceiling counting the cracks that have developed since last night. There are some great medications out there to help with this. It could also be a side effect from a medication you are taking. If you are into natural remedies Melatonin has been studied to be an effective treatment option as well.

Pain can also be an issue it can cause insomnia or fragmented sleep, the up and down all night sleep. The bed part is that if you do not get the sleep you need you will be more irritable and your body will take longer to heal. If you have found that you have chronic pain and you can't sleep talk to your doctor he might be able to help.

Hot flashes are annoying and come at the most inopertune times such as when you are trying to sleep. There may be no help for them or they may be a sign that you have a sleep disorder such as obstructive sleep apnea. The incidence of sleep apnea increases increases as we get older. 10% of the population has it. So if you have increased snoring or you wake up gasping talk to your doctor because there is a simple test to find out if this is the problem.

Restless leg syndrome also increases as we age. Sometimes it is caused from low iron levels in our blood. It can also be caused from some mineral deficinecies. Most of the time these are not the causes. There is help and there was even a recent study that compression stockings might help to relieve the symptoms rather then taking medication. Again the best thing to do is talk to your doctor about your options.

Remember the problem with untreated sleep problems are many. It can lead to memory issues, fatigue, high blood pressure, irritability or more significant health issues. Talking to your doctor can help to fix these problems, but you may have to be the one to initiate the conversation.

Author's Bio: 

Amy Korn-Reavis, RRT, RPSGT has been in the respiratory field for over twenty years. She has worked in all areas and is currently focusing on sleep and how to help the community feel better by sleeping better. She is the manager of Emery Sleep Solutions an independent testing facility located in Apopka, Florida. She is also the coordinator of A.W.A.K.E. Orlando a support group for people with sleep disorders If you have any questions about sleep or are looking for someone to speak at your community function she can be reached at