What is menopause?
Menopause (the climacteric, the change of life) is a natural event that happens to every woman. It marks the end of menstruation what is caused by weakening the hormonal function of the ovaries. We are dealing with the phenomenon when a woman past her forties doesn’t menstruate for 6 consecutive months.
Menopause usually occurs when a woman is approaching the age of 50 but the disorders connected with menopause may last for several years.
What is the course of menopause?
The signs of menopause are mainly connected with lower concentration of estradiol – a hormone which is one of the estrogens. A woman’s organism needs to switch from regular menstruation to lowered hormone production.
Adjusting to the hormonal changes may take a different course in every woman. The symptoms of menopause may appear even a few years before the last period. Some of the below mentioned symptoms are not experienced by some woman – it is a very individual matter. This is why the treatment needs to be established individually for every woman.
- hot flashes and night sweating – usually these last from few seconds to few minutes
- sleeplessness – difficulty to fall asleep and frequent awakening leading to irritability during the day
- mental changes – depression, problems with memory, mood swings
- menstruation disorders – less abundant and irregular menstrual flow, bleeding between periods
- dermatological problems – flabby skin, developing cellulite, bristle nails, hair loss, acne, seborrhoea etc.
- dizziness – often connected with hot flashes and increased pressure
- weight gain – the feeling of hunger is more frequent and it is more difficult to lose the excess weight
- vaginal dryness and loss of libido – connected with decreased excretion of vaginal mucus; the dryness may be accompanied by itching what may lead to discomfort during sexual intercourse
- painful urination, incontinence – mostly stress incontinence happening when a woman sneezes, coughs or lifts heavy objects
- chronic vaginal inflammation – dry mucous membrane makes infections more frequent
- cardiovascular ailments – connected with the loss of estrogenic protection
- osteoporosis, bone aches – connected with the rapid loss of minerals
- frequent constipations – caused by the internal changes in the body as well as by keeping a bad diet or living an unhealthy lifestyle
Remember that menopause is not a disease, but a natural biological process. Menopause isn’t something to be cured – the treatment lessens its unpleasant symptoms and helps to restore the hormonal balance disturbed by the climacteric. A doctor can advise a hormonal-replacement therapy, however not every woman can use it.
What can you do to help yourself go through the menopause?
- Remember that the way you will go through this period in your life is mainly up to you. If you keep looking after your physical and mental health you may discover that the menopause can be your “second youth”
- Focus on yourself. This is the time when you can focus on your own needs, rediscover your partner and yourself, focus on your passion. Give yourself the opportunity to be a positive egoist – it will do you good.
- If you are a smoker – quit, or at least try to quit smoking. Menopause is a good time to introduce positive change in your life.
- Keep a healthy and balanced diet – that will help you feel better, you will avoid constipation and weight gaining.
- Remember about your organism’s increased demand for calcium and vitamin D – if your diet is low in those elements take supplements.
- Look after your bladder – try to keep it free from infections; exercise your pelvic floor muscles.
- If you experience urine loss – ensure your own comfort by using discreet protection – use Seni Lady bladder control pads.
- Stay active – physical exercise will help you keep your body in shape; you will increase the happiness hormone production, and that will make you feel better. If you are not fit to exercise, be more active in your daily life – take walks, get off the bus a stop earlier and walk, use the stairs instead of the lift.
- See a doctor and don’t be afraid to ask questions – the doctor will advise you how to handle your condition and will clear all your doubts.
- Carry out all of the recommended examination – check your blood, urine, and hearing, have a mammography, visit a gynaecologist – some diseases which may develop during menopause, but are detected early, are easier to cure.
- Always be yourself – remember that menopause will pass, and that there are many years ahead of you to enjoy life.