Menopause is a natural occurrence when a woman experiences changes in her body that lead to the end of her reproductive period, in which the ovaries no longer produce eggs, consequently, making the woman unable to conceive. The menopausal period is said to be concluded 12 months after your last menstrual period.
During the late 30’s, a women’s ovaries produce less estrogen and progesterone, the hormones responsible for regulating menstruation. This is a gradual process that is unique for each woman. On average, women in the United States experience menopause at the age of 51, but it can happen anywhere in your 40’s or 50’s.
In the perimenopausal transition period, this can be months or even years that lead up to menopause, a woman can expect to experience the following symptoms:
• Hot flashes
• Night sweats
• Irregular periods
• Abnormal vaginal bleeding
• Vaginal dryness
• Pain during intercourse
• Mood changes
• Loss of breast fullness
• Weight gain or loss
• Thinning hair
• Frequent urination
It is also possible not to experience any symptoms and maintain a steady menstrual cycle each month up until your last period.
For some women, this is a stage in life that they look forward to as they no longer have to worry about the chance of pregnancy. For others, this can be a stressful period of change. Either way, the end of fertility does not mean the end of a healthy and sexual lifestyle, which many women often times believe.
Learn how to control your menopause symptoms with these tricks from Women’s First Health Center.