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Menopause, Sleep and Earplugs

Words: Dinah Siman
Photography: Clive Rose & Linus Morales

For those not from the UK, any mention of the Cotswalds may bring forth emotions or tales of fantasy from Middle England. The Cotswolds, which rise from the meadows of the upper River Thames, is home to Dinah Siman and her very real story of menopause and learning to sleep again. Dinah has dealt with, suffered from, taken head on and learned to live with/through menopause. Along the way, Dinah’s symptoms would fluctuate. She would change her diet and her commitment to exercise, but learning to sleep again became Dinah’s Cotswald fantasy.

Menopause, while used as a catch all phrase, is actually the specific period 12-months after a woman experiences her last period. The cause – Estrogen is no longer produced in the ovaries. Prior to one’s “menopause birthday” is perimenopause, which can last a decade or more. Not enough? Postmenopause kicks in afterwards. During this entire period as symptoms fluctuate, sleep, or lack thereof, becomes the greatest obstacle to one’s overall well being.

Dinah’s perimenopause hit in her late 40s and she experienced menopause at age 56. For years there had been inconsistent sleep fueled by adrenal rushes, burning skin, hot flashes and more. “There were waves of symptoms and constant fluctuations in symptoms”. “You can change your diet and you can exercise, but if you can’t sleep consistently you can’t function consistently”.

Dinah changed her diet, devoted herself to pilates and exercise, she would see a specialist and receive HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy). Taken together, this “helped hugely”. Sleep, however, remained inconsistent.

There was a plan to exercise and to eat healthier, but not a plan to sleep better. Why? The reality is sleep in menopause is highly complex and always changing. A woman suffering from menopause will experience a fluctuation in symptoms over many years yet on a daily basis there are changes in light, temperature and sound. For example, a snoring partner snores at different levels and times as one’s own sleep is fluctuating from deep to shallow. Throw all of this together and a good night’s sleep can become incredibly complex and difficult to plan for.

To complicate matters further, for Dinah, it was at age 56 when menopause hit that she also developed a heightened sensitivity to sound. Growing sensitive to sound and/or experiencing tinnitus is well documented through menopause. Put the timeline together, throw in Dinah’s snoring partner, and consistent sleep was a thing of the past. If Dinah was going to ever sleep consistently again she would need a plan and the tools to do it.

Enter Dinah’s close friend, Minnie, and her life would change. Minnie would recommend Happy Ears earplugs to Dinah. Happy Ears had helped Minnie sleep better through menopause and she wanted her friends to know it.

Dinah was gifted a pair of the earplugs from her friend and she used them right away. There was no effect. Her sleep didn’t improve. Dinah stuck with it because of her friend’s insistence and simply because her sleep was so bad there was no option. She had suffered now for more than 10 years. Enough was enough. She had to sleep better!

After one month using Happy Ears Dinah really started seeing the benefit. During this time she learned to better position the earplug… Dinah is a side sleeper. Most importantly she learned if she could get to sleep, the earplugs were helping her stay asleep. A fantasy no more, she had cracked the code and discovered there was a pattern to her sleep and now had a plan to sleep better. It took time to learn how the earplugs fit best and to gain confidence they were working…particularly with a snoring partner. Looking back, Dinah wonders what if?…”Why have I not been using earplugs to sleep better through menopause for the last ten years?” “Having tools like Happy Ears…I feel so much better with consistently good sleep”.

Experiencing menopause and struggling to sleep? Sleep is complex, but with a plan and the right tools you can sleep better. Happy Ears are an incredibly simple product and just one of many tools/practices to incorporate, but as Dinah says the impact can be “life changing”. At Happy Ears we know sleep is complex and we know it can take 2-4 weeks to change your sleep pattern. Some will sleep better the first night, but if you try Happy Ears and at first don’t succeed, don’t stop. Persevere as Dinah did. As long as the earplug is comfortable, continue for at least one month.

Suffering through menopause and need to sleep better? Start with one of our Discovery Packs, which include all three sizes of Happy Ears and include a full money back guarantee – We guarantee you’ll sleep better.


Dinah Siman - Thank you for sharing this important story.