"It just makes me feel a little less alone": a qualitative exploration of the podcast Menopause: Unmuted on women's perceptions of menopause

Amy L. Edwards, Philippa A. Shaw, Candida C. Halton, Stacy C. Bailey, Michael Wolf, Emma N. Andrews, Tina Cartwright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Menopause can negatively impact women's quality of life, with many women reporting inadequate information and support. Podcasts have grown in popularity in recent years and have been found to be accessible methods for increasing knowledge and challenging perceptions of stigmatized topics. The current research aimed to understand the impact of the podcast "menopause: unmuted" on women's menopause-related knowledge, understanding, and communication practices. METHODS: A diverse sample of 30 women aged 40 to 60 years listened to the podcast series, which focused on menopause stories, before taking part in semistructured interviews to discuss the impact of the podcast on how they understood and communicated about menopause. The interviews were analyzed thematically. RESULTS: Two overarching themes were identified in the data. A "journey of knowledge gain" explores participants' understanding of menopause before listening to the podcast and describes how this is deepened by hearing and connecting with women's stories. "Reframing menopause" describes the impact of the podcast, where women reflect on the value of communication amongst women, challenge and re-evaluate the stigmatization of menopause, and discuss ways to make positive behavioral changes in their lives. CONCLUSIONS: The podcast "menopause: unmuted" helped women to learn about the menopause experience, have a greater sense of belonging to a community of women, and feel empowered to make changes in their own lives. Sharing stories via podcasts has potential as an accessible and impactful medium to educate women and reduce the widespread stigma associated with menopause.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1374-1384
Number of pages11
JournalMenopause (New York, N.Y.)
Volume28
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 7 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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