While the average age of menopause is 51 across the world, this rate can vary between 45 and 55 years. In developing countries, the age of menopause is earlier than in developed countries. While the age of menopause in developed countries is between 49 and 51, it may vary between 43 and 49 in developing countries.
Menopause is not a disease, but a natural period in a woman's life that marks the end of the reproductive age. The diagnosis of menopause becomes definite when there is no menstrual bleeding in women for 12 months. During the period called the premenopausal period, there are fluctuations in hormone levels, especially estrogen hormone secreted from the ovaries. After a while, the eggs are depleted and the hormone secretion from the ovaries stops. As a result of all these changes, menstrual bleeding ceases. While some women have no or very mild complaints in the pre- and post-menopausal period, which is a process that continues for years, some women may experience much more severe problems.
What Are the Symptoms of Menopause?
The signs and symptoms of menopause differ for every woman, including changes in menstrual patterns. In the months or years that ensure the formation of the perimenopause process from the regular reproductive and menstrual period to the menopause period, the person, especially with irregular menstrual periods;
- Skin dryness,
- Night sweats,
- Weight gain,
- Slowing metabolism,
- Loss of fullness in the breast,
- Sudden changes in mood
- Thinning of hair strands,
- Hot flashes,
- Sleep problems,
- It may suffer from various signs and symptoms, such as vaginal dryness.
Skipping the menstrual period during perimenopause is a common and expected situation. Often, periods skip a month and start again in the next period, or skip a few months and start monthly cycles again for a few months. Also, menstrual periods tend to occur in shorter cycles. For this reason, it may recur more frequently.
However, pregnancy development is possible despite irregular periods. For this reason, it is recommended that women who skip a menstrual period but are not sure whether they have started the menopausal transition or not have a pregnancy test. If there is still bleeding in the vagina after the menopause process, then a doctor should be consulted. Because early control and the associated early diagnosis make a great contribution to the treatment process.
What are early menopause symptoms?
Early menopause is a common occurrence. Various symptoms can be counted as the first signs of menopause. These early menopause symptoms are;
- Sleep problems,
- Hot flushes,
- Don't be nervous or get angry very easily,
- Sexual dysfunction,
- Hair loss,
- Mood and mood disorders,
- Excessive weight gain,
- It can be listed as a decrease in cognitive functions.
Which treatments are used during menopause?
Since the stimulation of the body by basic sex hormones such as estrogen and progesterone decreases after menopause, there is a predisposition to the development of certain health problems. Especially in postmenopausal women, osteoporosis is one of the most common ailments.
Again, different problems, such as cardiovascular diseases, cerebrovascular diseases, certain cancers, gynecological problems, and an increase in the severity of chronic diseases, may occur.
To combat these menopausal problems, the following treatments can be applied to women:
Hormone Replacement Therapy: It is a treatment method that aims to replace the estrogen and progesterone hormones, whose amounts decrease in the body after menopause. It is especially effective in strengthening the bone tissue, eliminating symptoms such as hot flashes, and protecting the body against chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases.
Calcium Treatment for the Prevention of Bone Resorption: In this treatment method, calcium and vitamin D support, hormone and biological agent treatments when necessary, and the use of bisphosphonates may be on the agenda.
Cholesterol Treatment: For chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, lifestyle changes such as cholesterol treatment, a balanced diet, and exercise are among the elements of treatment.
Is it possible to delay menopause?
Menopause is a natural process for women, and it is not possible to delay it because it is not possible to increase the number of eggs. However, of course, a woman's menstruation can be achieved with hormonal drugs that can be given. Although this situation is known as delay among the people, in fact, the process consists only of imitating the menstrual cycle with medication. People who want to experience a healthy menopause process naturally can pay attention to the following facts:
- Paying attention to your eating habits
- Adopting a regular lifestyle
- Avoiding smoking and alcohol consumption
- To exercise
Does Menopause Affect Sex Life?
Sexuality in menopause is another curious topic. Vaginal dryness caused by decreased moisture and loss of elasticity in the vagina can cause pain, injuries, and slight bleeding during sexual intercourse. Also, decreased sensation can reduce an individual's sexual desire. In these cases, water-based vaginal moisturizers or lubricants can help the person during sexual intercourse. If the use of vaginal lubricants does not provide sufficient results, regional vaginal estrogen therapy in the form of vaginal cream, tablet, or ring may give positive results, again after the doctor's recommendation.
What can I do to reduce the distress caused by menopause?
Hot flashes and night sweats: light clothing should be worn. Hot drinks such as tea and coffee and spicy food should be avoided. A damp, wet towel can be applied to the neck during hot flashes. If smoking is used, it should be reduced, and if possible, it should be stopped. Because smoking increases the complaints of hot flashes even more.
Vaginal dryness: Vaginal lubricant should be used before intercourse. Vaginal moisturizers should be used when the doctor deems them appropriate.
Sleep problems: Try to develop regular sleep habits. The habit of drinking tea and coffee should be abandoned in the afternoon or after dinner.
Depression: Try to be active and social; sports and exercise must be done.