Menopause is a natural biological process that occurs at the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle. A woman is said to be in menopause if she does not menstruate for 12 consecutive months. Menopause typically affects women between the ages of 40 and 50; however, this can vary depending on age, race, ethnicity, genetics, and medical conditions. Menopause occurs when the ovaries eventually stop producing eggs and female sex hormone levels drop, signaling the end of a woman’s reproductive years. Menopause causes a number of changes in a woman’s body. Essentially, every menopausal symptom is caused by ageing of the body. It can be difficult to distinguish between normal signs of ageing and signs of menopause as you get older.Also Read – Menopause Symptoms And Health Tips: 4 Easy Ways to Stay Healthy During Menopause
Menopause: Signs And Symptoms
Several health conditions and physical characteristics typify menopause which may vary in occurrence, severity, and intensity for every woman. These symptoms signal a reduction in estrogen production and hormonal fluctuations. Menstrual irregularities like skipping periods, disrupted cycles, extended or reduced duration, heavy or less flow, spotting, etc., are the foremost and most prominent indicators of menopause. The menopausal transition can be recognized by experiencing the following symptoms. Also Read – Going Through Menopause? Add These 5 Foods to Your Daily Diet
- Hot flushes – The sudden feeling of warmth spreads over the body, usually most intense over the face, neck, and chest, along with profound sweating.
- Night sweats – Hot flashes occurring during the night are generally termed night sweats.
- Cold flashes – menopause cold flashes are chills that develop immediately or after a hot flash.
- Vaginal dryness – During premenopause, the vagina becomes dry, leading to discomfort during sex.
- Urinary incontinence – The loss of bladder control varying from a slight loss of urine after sneezing, coughing, or laughing to frequent urination and even complete inability to control urination.
- Insomnia – It is a sleep disorder referring to persistent problems in falling and staying asleep.
- Emotional changes – mood swings and emotional distress leading to irritability, anxiety, and mild depression also characterize the onset of menopause.
- Physical changes – While nearing menopause, women might feel that their hair and skin become drier and thinner. Some women may gain weight, experiencing more fat around the waist, less muscles, and painful and stiff joints
Some people might also experience the following: Racing heart, Headaches, Joint and muscle aches and pains, Changes in libido (sex drive), Difficulty concentrating, memory lapses (often temporary), Weight gain, Hair loss or thinning. Also Read – 5 Common Women's Health Problems You Should Not Ignore
Menopause symptoms are natural and normal; however, they can be incommodious for some. A healthy diet, regular physical activity, and certain lifestyle modifications help relieve symptoms and improve the overall quality of life during this transition. Catalytic factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, caffeine dependence, stress, and anxiety trigger the effects of menopause and may worsen the symptoms; therefore must be avoided.
(With inputs from IANS)