Women and people of biological childbearing ability will eventually go through menopause. Menstruation ceases and the body begins to exhibit changes. Person to person, this is incredibly different, and while some people may experience extreme difficulties, others are not going to have symptoms that cause any noticeable discomfort. Additionally, the mental and physical relief of no longer experiencing a period, or for some, no longer worrying about getting pregnant, maybe a salve. Here are some facts to know about menopause, whether you’re going through it now or may go through it in the future.
When is Menopause?
Menopause is often treated as a general extended period in one’s life when it actually covers the twelve months after your last period. Of course, you may experience many symptoms or conditions leading up to it, such as hot flashes or changes in your cycle, but these are referred to as perimenopause or the menopausal transition. This stage will typically begin between ages 45 and 55 and can last, typically, anywhere from the typical seven years, up to 14 years. Health and lifestyle factors will affect hormones in such a way as to cause a wide variation amongst people experiencing perimenopause.
Can Other Conditions Present as Menopause?
Any conditions that concern you, or if you’re wondering if they are menopausal, should be discussed with your doctor. They will want to know about your family history, as well, to help determine if hot flashes, etc, may be from another source. Menopause also does not always occur of its own accord and can be triggered by surgery, and symptoms will be worse if you don’t take hormones.
What are Typical Symptoms of Menopause?
There are many possible symptoms, of course, but the typical signs are:
- · A change in your period
- · Hot flashes
- · Bladder control issues
- · Change in sleep (difficulty getting a full night’s sleep)
- · Mood changes
- · Vaginal health changes
There are others, including changes in your body that could be attributable to many things, so as always, consult with a competent OB-GYN.
What Treatments are Available?
There are also many medical and lifestyle change treatments that should be discussed with your doctor, including hormonal therapy, melatonin usage to help with sleep, and prescriptions for vaginal dryness. Since these changes vary from person to person, your doctor can help you establish a regimen and treatment plan that will allow you to take the safest route to avoid the worst effects of menopause.
There’s nothing wrong with being prepared, even for the inevitable. Knowing your own body and how it may react is a good start, and discussing it with your OB-GYN can also help you understand other challenges you might face when going through menopause. While it is simply yet another cycle of your life, it can be difficult to handle due to unnecessary social stigma and people who may not understand what you’re going through. Find an O
B-GYN who will listen attentively and who will provide you with any advice or guidance you may need to make your experience as comfortable as possible.