Menopause or the “change of life” affects each woman in a different way. Maybe hot flushes and sleep problems troubled your sister during menopause. You, however, might be feeling a new sense of freedom and energy.
Your best friend may hardly be aware of a change at all.
Just like puberty, menopause is a normal part of life. It is really the end of a long, slow process. When you are in your mid-30’s, your ovaries begin to change how much estrogen and progesterone, two female hormones, they make. These are both important for normal menstrual cycles and successful pregnancy. Estrogen helps to keep bones healthy. It may also have an effect on cholesterol levels in your blood, help keep skin and arteries more elastic, and possibly help memory. Although very rare before the age of 40, menopause can happen anytime from your 30’s to your mid-50’s or even later. Smokers often begin menopause earlier than non-smokers.
Puberty – This is the age when body changes begin and breasts develop. A young girl begins to have a monthly period, often around 12 to 13 years of age.
Perimenopause – This probably begins about 3 to 5 years before your last menstrual period. It lasts until 12 months after your final period. Some signs or symptoms of menopause may appear during this time.
Menopause – The event that marks menopause is your final menstrual period. You will know for sure that you have experienced menopause when you have not had a period in a year.
Postmenopause – Because this time follows menopause, it begins with your final period and lasts the rest of your life. Like menopause, you do not know you are there until 1 year later.
Menopause requires no medical treatment. Instead, treatments focus on relieving your signs and symptoms and preventing or managing chronic conditions that may occur with aging.
Our focus is providing the best possible treatments available to patients