Health is essential, especially when a person is aging. It is hard to maintain a healthy body when you are growing old, but graceful aging is not possible. It can be achieved by having a healthy lifestyle, avoiding vices like alcohol drinking and smoking, managing stress, and a lot more factors. However, some circumstances are inevitable that makes aging more challenging such as a menopausal stage. Most people thought that it is an illness, but contrary to that, menopause is a stage that is happening to every woman in the world. Let’s tackle more about it to deepen your understanding of this matter.
What Is Menopausal
When a woman reached the age of twelve, the menstrual cycle usually begins. A menstrual cycle usually takes a minimum of two days and can last up to a week. Less than two days and more than a week might be an indication that there is a problem in your ovaries. Every 21 days, the menstrual flow will occur, sometimes it can go up to 35 days, but the average takes 28 days. Some women are experiencing an abnormal menstrual cycle with different reasons such as pregnancy, hormonal imbalances, polycystic ovary syndrome, ovarian failure, pelvic inflammatory disease, breastfeeding, and menopausal. When a woman reaches the age of 40, menopause can start as early as that age. But it is not common, only a percentage of women experiencing early menopausal stage. On average, it happens at the age of 50s. It is the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle, and you can confirm it when for the consecutive 12 months, there is no episode of any menstrual cycle. For some women during menopausal stage, they feel sick and irritable. However, menopause is not a disease, although you may feel unwell during the first stage of it.
What Causes It
So, what are the causes of menopause? There are four possible causes of menopause. First is a natural condition; it is where the reproductive hormones are naturally declining. When you begin your menstrual cycle, your ovaries will be ready for reproduction by making estrogen and progesterone. These two are responsible for making the menstruation flow regulated. When you are in your late 30s or early 40s, the production of both estrogen and progesterone will be lesser than earlier. When this happens, your fertility will be declining, and that is why getting pregnant at these ages are harder than more previously. On the mid and late 40s, your menstrual cycle will be lessened and shorter. If you are trying to get pregnant at this age bracket, it will be a tough one.
Then when you reach your 50s, you will have lighter periods or no period at all once the menopausal stage starts. Aside from the natural process of ending a menstrual cycle, there are three other such as total hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy, primary ovarian insufficiency, and cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation. When you have a problem in your ovary and needs it to be removed, together with the uterus, then it is the time that you will experience instant menopause. It is called a total hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy. Whether you are young or older when this happened, your menstrual cycle will suddenly be stopped and caused menopause. With primary ovarian insufficiency occurs when the ovary is failing to produce the normal levels of both estrogen and progesterone. This condition happens due to some factors such as genetic or by having an autoimmune disease, or it just happens. One way to treat this kind of situation is by hormone therapy that usually comes by taking pills given by the experts. It is necessary to undergo hormone therapy until the menopausal age comes in. In this way, there will be no to less further complications and will have the heart and brain protected due to premature menopause. Lastly, menopause can be caused by cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation. When either chemotherapy or radiation treated a patient, there is a chance of inducing menopause. But it may be only for a short time over time under the treatments.
Additional Read: 4 Health Risks Women Face After Menopause
What Are The Symptoms
Many women are experiencing being sick alike when they are on their first phase of menopausal. Each woman has a story to tell when menopausal days begin. Some have it flawlessly, and some are having difficulties. Let’s see what the symptoms are, and if you are experiencing at least three of it, there is a high chance that you are on the early stage of menopause.
The Skipping Periods. It is common for a woman to skip periods when the menopausal stage is approaching. For some women in their early 40s, skipping periods can be due to pregnancy, but other than that, it can be a start of menopause. It is not permanent, you may have a period this month, and then the next month you will not have, and then you will have again on the following month. Your menstrual flow may stop for a few months and then back again. During this stage, a woman can still get impregnated even there are skipping a period. So if you feel like you are pregnant other than menopausing, then make sure to have a pregnancy test done at home. If you skip your menstrual cycle for a year and you are not pregnant, then that is the menopausal stage of your life.
Change in the Menstrual Cycle. Just like with skipping periods, your cycle changes its schedule. Aside from the time frame, the volume of your menstrual discharge may be lessened or may increase. Also, the days may be shorter or longer. When these changes occur, then it may be a sign for menopausal.
Hot Flashes. When you feel warmth, especially on your chest up to your face so suddenly, then you are experiencing hot flashes. It is a serious matter too as if you lose too much sweat during hot flashes, and then you might be experiencing getting chilled after it. Hot flashes can happen even if the weather is not hot, and also you are inside a room where the air conditioner is turned on. Usually, it can be treated with deep, slow abdominal breathing. For women, hot flashes are very common during the menstrual stage.
Dryness on The Genital Area. Atrophic vaginitis or vaginal atrophy are the names being called by vaginal dryness during menopausal. When the menopausal stage starts, the vaginal tissues are getting thin, and therefore, the area will get irritated than usual. When this happens, the estrogen level will naturally go down and causing dryness to the genital area during the menopausal stage. It is very common to an older woman when one reaches the age of 40s and up.
Insomnia Attacks. During menopausal, a woman may be experiencing some sleep problems and discomforts. There are more than 50% of women during the stage that hardly sleeps during the night. Some of the sleeping problems are difficulty in breathing, mood disorder, hormonal changes, and hot flashes that leads to sleeplessness. Lack of sleep will not help during this stage but sometimes, it is inevitable. But some solutions might work for you that is worth a try. You can remodel your room by making it dark and noise free, turn on your air conditioner with pleasant cold temperature, avoid stress and vices, always keep a frozen compress bag beside you in cases hot flashes attack, and meditation might help too.
Anxiety Attacks. It is why many women feel sick, both physically and emotionally, when menopause strikes due to anxiety attacks. It is normal to have attacked as the body is changing. Imagine the changes that a woman has to go through during menopausal stage such as hormonal imbalance, sleeplessness, skipping a period, stress, and a lot more. Anxiety will be most likely to happen during this stage, and professionals mostly have given them antidepressants or hormone replacement therapy. Others go well with having a healthier lifestyle by exercising, eating the proper nutrition, avoiding vices, and constant communication with loved ones. It is also helpful to have someone to talk too, if you feel there is a need to go in a Houston home healthcare agencies during menopausal stage then it is ideal. There, you will have someone to talk to and will assist you with what you are going through.
The thinning of hair. During the menopausal stage, thinning of hair is normal since the production of estrogen and progesterone are declining. It is the time when androgen is the responsibility in shrinking the hair follicles and resulting in thinning of hair. One option to prevent this from happening is to use the anti-androgens drug, but not all have a positive response to this medication. It works differently with each woman.
Chills. After hot flashes, chills usually come in and takes place. But you can also experience cold flashes even if you are in a warm room, and you can suddenly feel getting cold and shivers in no time. Cold and hot flashes have their triggers, so you need to find out what. Common triggers include caffeine intake, stress and anxiety attacks, sugar, alcohol, nicotine, and spicy foods.
These symptoms are prevalent during the menopausal stage. Among the mentioned above, other symptoms include loss of fullness of breast, weight gain, loss of appetite, drying of the skin, and mood swings.