About menopause and menopause stages
Menopause is a natural phenomenon and is defined as the final menstrual period in which ovary stops producing estrogen and progesterone hormones. It is confirmed when a woman fails to get her period for 12 consecutive months. It happens due to aging, when the levels of estrogen and other hormones fall down. It occurs usually after the age of 40 years and sometimes around the age of 51.
There are four stages of menopause:
- Pre - menopause: In this stage the entire reproductive period up to the last menstrual cycle is included, according to some experts. It is a beginning of menopause. Women experience irregular periods but the symptoms of menopause don't get started at this level. A woman undergoing this phase is in the middle or in her late 40s.
- Perimenopause: At this stage the women start experiencing hot flashes, night sweats as well as vaginal dryness. These are the common symptoms of menopause. Women are around the age of 47 when they hit this stage.
- Menopause: At this stage women get their final menstrual period. You cannot pinpoint your final period until the period of one year gets completed. You see the date of your last period which is the date of your menopause.
- Post - menopause: This stage is the last third in many women's lives; it includes women who have been free of menstrual periods for at least one year to women completing their 100th birthday or beyond. In other words, once you're passed the stages of menopause, you are considered as postmenopausal as long as you live.
A woman's ovary produces estrogen and progesterone hormone and is born with infinite eggs that are stored in the ovaries. These hormones regulate the process of menstruation as well as ovulation. When the ovaries stop releasing egg in a month menstruation comes to an end which leads to the occurrence of menopause. There are women who experience menopause very early because of a surgery like hysterectomy or due to damage caused to the ovaries by chemotherapy. Menopause that occurs before 40 years of age is known as premature menopause.
During menopause hormonal imbalance occurs due to which women experience several physical and emotional symptoms. It starts at mid - 40s when the reproductive capability of a woman's body end.
Some major symptoms of menopause are as follows:
Hot flashes, night sweats, irregular periods, loss of libido, vaginal dryness, mood swings, fatigue, hair loss, insomnia, memory loss, dizziness, weight gain, bloating, brittle nails, allergies, change in body odor, depression, anxiety, breast pain, digestion problems, osteoporosis, tingling extremities, itching, muscle tension, gum problems, electric shock sensation, headaches, joint pain, panic disorder and burning tongue.
Three Approaches for Treating the 34 Menopausal Symptoms:
There are various treatments to alleviate the symptoms of menopause.
You should practice the following three methods to treat menopause symptoms:
- Lifestyle Changes - For making your life better you must follow a well - balanced diet and a regular exercise regime. It helps to minimize the symptoms of menopause and also to maintain overall good health. By making slight changes in your lifestyle you also manage to get rid of unhealthy habits that you are used to for a long time period. You can also stop smoking as well as consuming too much alcohol. To reduce hot flashes wear light comfortable dresses and avoid taking spicy foods and caffeine. To get relief from vaginal dryness you can use non estrogen lubricants.
- Drugs and Surgery - Hormone replacement therapy (HT) decreases the symptoms of menopause, especially hot flashes, night sweats and osteoporosis. Women having a hysterectomy are prescribed from estrogen alone. If you don't want to take hormones various medications are available to alleviate a few symptoms of menopause. Doctor prescribes antidepressants for mood swings and sleeping disorder. Medications such as gabapentin and clonidine help to reduce hot flashes. These are the medications that can be used along with a hormone therapy, in most cases.
- Alternative Medicine - Meditation, acupuncture and relaxation methods are considered safe and are used to eliminate menopause stress. Many people are benefitted by these techniques. Many women try natural remedies such as herbs for treating their symptoms.
Menopause Supplement: Best way to deal with menopause symptoms
Besides all these treatments for menopause there are supplements that can help to reduce the symptoms safely. For instance black cohosh is regarded as the best menopause supplement. It helps in relieving hot flashes as compared to placebo. Other supplements include calcium, red clover, vitamin d, wild yam, dong quai and ginseng.
Menopause is a natural process associated with many symptoms and various treatment options are also available. Menopause supplements work best and are the most chosen form of treatment. Discuss with your doctor first if you are taking any supplement.