Last night, TV presenter Davina McCall presented findings from a new menopause survey of over 4,000 women in her new Channel 4 documentary, Davina McCall: Sex, Mind and The Menopause. The survey found that one in 10 women who have worked while going through menopause have quit their job directly because of their symptoms.
Believed to be the largest survey conducted on menopausal women in the UK, it also found that 14 per cent of women had reduced their hours at work, 14 per cent had gone part-time and eight per cent had not applied for a promotion – again, all because of menopause symptoms affecting their ability to do so.
An additional 13 per cent of women who have been employed while going through the menopause say they have considered leaving their job. Women who report experiencing five or more ‘very difficult’ menopause symptoms are more likely (19 per cent) to quit, with disabled women even more likely (22 per cent) to do so.
We recently spoke to women about the impact of working from home on those going through menopause, but up until now, it has only been anecdotally acknowledged (and largely brushed under the carpet) that the menopause affects women’s ability to do their job. This is the first time the fact has been reflected in hard numbers through a rigorous study of this size.
The menopause survey also found that 45 per cent of the women surveyed had not talked to their GP about menopause – and even 29 per cent of women showing five or more severe symptoms had yet to speak to their GP or nurse about it.
Around a third said it took too many appointments with their GP to come to the conclusion that the menopause or perimenopause was an explanation for their symptoms; this rises to 45 per cent among women of colour.
If you think you may be experiencing the menopause or perimenopause, read what Dr Ellie Cannon says are the things every woman should ask her GP about the menopause.
You can still watch Davina McCall: Sex, Mind and The Menopause here.