At about the age of 50 to 55, most women’s monthly cycles finally stops – no more periods, no more ovulations, and no more chances of pregnancies. Welcome to the world of menopause.
What Actually Happens
Some women say that you can really feel it when you lose your ability to reproduce. Few say you can hardly tell the difference. But for every woman, the menopause is more than just medical condition – it is also a personal experience.
As women approach their 40s, the waning estrogen release from the ovary causes a variety of symptoms which can be uncomfortable at best, and well, needing medical attention at their worst.
Hot flushes are probably the most common symptom of menopause. About three in four women have them at the onset of their menopause. Aside from hot flushes, sleeplessness, night sweating, vaginal dryness, increased urinary incontinence, and urinary tract infections are usually experienced. Intense mood swings and reduced interest in sex have also been reported. These symptoms differ in their severity, frequency of occurrence, and duration. Needless to say, they have different effects on different women.
All of these menopausal symptoms are associated with the diminished production of estrogen in the body. See, lowered estrogen levels have an impact on some parts of your body – including your brain, which means change in your emotions is to be expected. Your skin is also affected, meaning you’ll probably notice changes in its thickness and elasticity.
When the ovaries stops producing estrogen, other long-term changes in your health start to take place. These changes may also affect your bone’s strength and density. This is mainly the reason why menopause is sometimes associated with osteoporosis. The female skeleton depends heavily on estrogen to be able to maintain their strength. Most women might look out for vaginal dryness and hot flushes, the first sign of menopause is bone-related. The fact that it often has no obvious symptoms is the reason that it has affected too many unsuspecting women.
Estrogen deficiency also causes chemical changes in the body that might increase the risk of heart disease and stroke for women past the menopause stage.
How Do You Know that Menopause Has Taken Place?
Menopause is not simple. It doesn’t come with a big sign saying it has arrived. Well, irregular periods and a hot flush now and then are pretty good signs that something big is taking place. However, identifying the exact time when the actual menopause happens is complex, especially if you are undergoing Hormone Replacement Therapy or taking the Pill to relieve some perimenopausal symptoms.
What Can You Do about It?
Having a healthy lifestyle can help lessen the effects of the menopause and help keep your bones and heart strong. A healthy diet is of course essential, especially at this stage. Regular exercise can also help relieve stress and some pains. Stay calm and relaxed as much as you can.
Menopause is not an easy phase that every woman has to go through, but with the right preparation, it’s nothing a strong woman cannot deal with.