Things Women Should Know About Menopause - Watsons Health

Things Women Should Know About Menopause

What is menopause?

A woman has reached her menopause when her periods have not occurred for at least 12 months after her last period. After menopause, a woman’s menstrual periods stop permanently, and she can no longer get pregnant. Menopause is a physically and emotionally challenging phase in a woman’s life.

What are perimenopause and postmenopause?

The transition from the start of irregular menstrual periods to the last menstrual period is known as perimenopause. Perimenopause usually starts in a woman’s mid- to late 40s and can last anywhere between one to four years before menopause is reached.

Postmenopause refers to the time after the woman reaches menopause.

At what age does menopause occur?

Menopause usually occurs between 45 and 55 years of age. In the Philippines, the average age of women experiencing menopause is 48 years.

Why does menopause occur?

With age, the reproductive cycle of women begins to slow down and prepares to stop. Levels of estrogen and progesterone, hormones that influence various systems in women’s bodies, decrease. The decline in hormonal levels brings about the symptoms of menopause.

What are the common symptoms of menopause?

Menopause can cause all or some of the following:

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Discomfort during sex
  • Urinary urgency (urgent feeling to urinate more frequently)
  • Insomnia (difficulty sleeping)
  • Emotional changes
  • Dryness of the skin, eyes, or mouth

What are hot flashes?

A hot flash is a sudden feeling of warmth in the upper part of the body. Hot flashes may be accompanied by perspiration or flushing (skin becoming red and hot) and usually last from 30 seconds to several minutes.

Why does sex hurt after menopause?

One of the symptoms of menopause is vaginal dryness, which can lead to discomfort or pain during sex. Consider using an over-the-counter lubricant jelly or talk to your doctor about prescription medicines.

Does menopause affect mental health?

Yes. Menopause can cause mood swings and make women depressed, anxious, unable to concentrate, forgetful, and irritable.

What screenings are needed after menopause?

Menopause can increase your risk for developing other health conditions. Regular screenings can help you identify them at an early stage. These include:

  • Mammogram
  • Pap test and human papillomavirus (HPV) test
  • Blood tests such as sugar levels and cholesterol levels
  • Blood pressure
  • Bone mass densitometry (BMD)
  • Height measurements to check for a decrease in height (due to bone loss)

How are menopausal symptoms treated?

Your gynecologist can discuss treatment options with you. These include hormonal therapy (estrogen, progesterone, progestin) and nonhormonal therapy (healthy diet, regular exercise, symptomatic treatment).

Consult your gynecologist for more information on managing the effects of menopause.

Shop at Watsons for prescription medications and other essential healthcare needs.

 

References:

https://www.medicinenet.com/15_things_women_should_know_about_menopause/article.htm. Accessed 31 July 2021
https://www.healthline.com/health/menopause/menopause-facts#symptoms. Accessed 31 July 2021
https://www.herdin.ph/index.php/partners?view=research&cid=23866. Accessed 31 July 2021

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