Woman's menopause struggle leads to new business

Melissa Neisler Dickinson, the founder of a new Suffolk business called Menopause Vitamin Company

Melissa Neisler Dickinson, the founder of a new Suffolk business called Menopause Vitamin Company - Credit: LEE HAYES PHOTOGRAPHY

An Ipswich-based businesswoman has opened up about her own struggles with menopause and how it led her to set up her new business.

Melissa Neisler Dickinson, 50, the founder of Menopause Vitamin Company, struggled with climacteric issues for months, before finding the combination of hormones and vitamins that helped with her symptoms. 

The hospitality manager and owner of the Suffolk Wedding Show said: “Without my own menopause experience, I would never have considered starting a company that, I hope, will in some way support many other women. 

“When menopause hit me, I honestly thought my world had ended.  

“I suffered crippling anxiety, brain fog, stiff joints, not to mention the hot and cold flushes and endless sleepless nights.  

Melissa Neisler Dickinson, the founder of a new Suffolk business called Menopause Vitamin Company

Melissa Neisler Dickinson, the founder of a new Suffolk business called Menopause Vitamin Company - Credit: LEE HAYES PHOTOGRAPHY

“I was completely overwhelmed with these new symptoms, thoughts, and feelings. I felt as though I had lost my direction and purpose.” 

Even though Melissa was leading a successful career as a manager in the Essex hospitality industry and had a happy marriage, menopause “disconnected her from the person she was only a few months before”. 

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“I was not prepared for this. Why had nobody told me how this new phase of my life would be?  

“We are prepared for womanhood and pregnancy, but not this. Perhaps this is why a lot of women find it so difficult.” 

After experiencing a meltdown at work, Melissa decided to look for help and found Dr Louise Newson, one of the UK’s leading menopause experts.

Melissa said that trying hormone replacement therapy (HRT) was a “game changer”, as it relieved her hot flushes, night sweats, brain fog and, especially, her anxiety. 

HRT is the most recommended treatment for menopause and perimenopause symptoms, according to NHS. 

There are also other treatments, including non-hormone medicines and cognitive behavioural therapy.

However, hormonal therapy did not help Melissa with her thinning hair, dry skin, weak nails and mood changes. 

The 50-year-old woman from Ipswich said: “I spent hours researching the vitamins, minerals and botanicals that could help. 

“Then I discovered 15 different supplements that made a big difference, but how could I afford to take that many supplements every day? 

“There was nothing on the market that could combine all these in one supplement, so I set out to create my own."

Melissa worked with a leading UK nutritionist and manufacturer to launch ‘Vibrancy Blend’ for Energy, Hair, Skin and Nails, something she is "very proud of". 

She said: "Our nutritional supplement is purely clean vitamins, minerals, botanicals etc. We recommend you check in with your GP or healthcare professional if you have any doubt, especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or have any health conditions."

The company owner plans to donate money each year from her new business to The Menopause Charity, so they can continue their great work in supporting women.