What is premenopause?
This is defined as the years between when menstruation starts (puberty) and menopause.
What is perimenopause?
This literally means around menopause. It is a menopause transition phase where the physical signs of menopause begin to manifest before the final menstruation. This may last up to 6 years or more before the final menstruation and end a year after.
What is menopause?,
This is defined as the final menstrual period. It is a normal process that occurs around age 51 and is usually confirmed when a woman misses her period for 12 consecutive months in the absence of other obvious causes. Menopause is usually caused by reduced function in ovaries due to aging. This in turn results in a lower levels of estrogen and other hormones. Menopause marks the permanent end of fertility.
What is induced menopause?
It is the period between the first and the last period when menstruation stops. This can occur at any age and it is usually due to medical processes like ovary removal or cancer treatment.
I had a hysterectomy. Will I still go through menopause?
If you had a hysterectomy due to a medical condition and both your uterus and ovaries were removed, you will experience immediate onset of menopause. This is called induced or surgical menopause. However if your ovaries are kept intact during a hysterectomy, you will not experience menopause because your ovaries will still produce hormones. Although you will not have any more periods, the hormones produced by your ovaries will still make your body cycle and hence you may experience pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS). Some women with intact ovaries after a hysterectomy may have occasional hot flashes due to disturbance in blood flow resulting from the procedure. However, it is important to note that a hysterectomy may cause you to have an earlier menopause than you would have otherwise.
When is menopause considered early or premature?
Any kind of menopause whether natural or induced that occur at age 40 years and below is considered premature. This is usually genetic or due to medical intervention as a result of a medical condition.
What are the causes of menopause?
It is a natural process that occurs with aging but in some cases medical intervention, cancer treatment and rare ovarian conditions may be the cause.
What are the signs and symptoms of menopause?
Signs and symptoms of menopause include:
- irregular menstrual cycle
- vaginal dryness
- hot flashes
- mood swing
- increased fat around the waist
How is menopause confirmed?
In most cases women know they are approaching menopause because they start to experience the signs and symptoms. If you have missed your period for 12 consecutive months without any of the obvious causes like pregnancy , then that is confirmation that you have reached menopause. Your doctor will confirm this by conducting blood tests to check the levels of your Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and estrogen levels. Your FSH level increases and estrogen level drops during menopause.
Will menopause cause my voice to change?
Usually menopause does not cause a woman’s voice to change but in some rare cases women loose their upper register voice.
Do I still have to use birth control now that menopause has begun?
You have to confirm you have menopause before you stop using birth control. To confirm, make sure you have missed your period for a entire year and have the necessary blood work done to check your hormone levels. It is advisable to practice safe sex techniques using latex condoms during menopause to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.
What should I know about hot flashes?
Hot flashes are very common in perimenopause, but not all women experience them. Intensity is different for every woman – ranging from mild ones such as a light brush to intense night sweats that could wake you up from a deep sleep. Hot flashes last from 30 seconds to 5 minutes and may last a few years after menopause. However, a few percentage of women may experience it for years.
How can I treat my hot flashes?
Menopausal hormone therapy will relieve hot flashes for many women but there are some drug therapies that may also offer relief. These include prescription therapies (hormones like Provera and Megace and medicines like Bellargal-S , Catapres and antidepressants like Zoloft , Paxil and Effexor) and over -the -counter medicines like ibuprofen, vitamin E, vitamin B complex and soy protein found in food.
What are the side effects of menopausal hormone therapy?
As with all medicines there are various side effects. Estrogen alone increases the risk of breast cancer. A type of menopausal hormone therapy, Prempro , increases the risk of blood clots and stroke. It may also slightly increase your chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer.
How will menopause affect my sex life?
Many women experience painful sex due to dryness caused by low estrogen levels. Use vaginal creams and estrogen treatment creams and tablets to minimize dryness. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist for recommendations.
What are the complications associated with menopause?
Common complications of menopause include:
What is post menopause?
It is all the years beyond menopause.