Understanding The Different Stages Of Menopause

Menopause is a natural change that occurs in a woman’s body as she ages. There are three stages of menopause, as well as a variety of symptoms and side effects that you could experience. Here is everything you need to know about the menopause stages, symptoms, and potential ways to help it.

What Is Menopause?

In simple terms, menopause marks the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle and fertility. It happens when your ovaries no longer produce estrogen or progesterone and typically happens when you have not experienced a period for more than one year.

There are multiple ways to treat menopause, from something like Estrovera menopause support by Ethical Nutrients to hormonal treatments, to even exercise and diet changes.

Three Stages Of Menopause

There are three stages of menopause that you will experience: perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause; here is what you need to know about these three stages.

Perimenopause

Perimenopause is defined by irregular cycles and periods. Most woman will experience this in their late 40s or early 50s. You may experience some side effects of menopause, but you aren’t going through full menopause yet.

Menopause

Menopause begins when you have gone a whole year without a period. While you will only know this after a year, you will start to experience more menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, loss of sleep, and a few others.

Postmenopause

Postmenopause occurs a year after menopause, and you will now have postmenopause for the rest of your life. You will experience symptoms, but they will vary in severity from person to person. Vaginal bleeding is uncommon at this stage, and if you experience it, it is best to visit a doctor to seek advice and help.

Menopause Symptoms

There are a wide variety of symptoms related to menopause, with some being far more common than others. The severity of these symptoms will differ from person to person, and some women will experience almost all of them, while others may only experience a few of them.

A few of the more common symptoms will include hot flashes and sweating, even on colder days. Mood swings and a lower sex drive are all to be expected, as well as vaginal pain and dryness.

Persistent headaches are also to be expected, and you may find yourself having trouble sleeping due to some of the above symptoms.

Less Common Symptoms

There are also a few less common symptoms of menopause that you may experience. Joint and muscle pain may occur, and you also may find it difficult to concentrate or focus on a task, even if you are relaxed, have had enough sleep, etc.

You may also find yourself gaining weight quicker than before, and you may also experience hair loss or thinning as menopause has an effect on your hormones, which subsequently have an effect on several aspects of your body.

Treatment 

Menopause can be treated in a multitude of ways, ranging from simple lifestyle changes to medicine and hormonal therapy.

Hormonal Therapy

In simple terms, hormonal therapy is the process of replacing the estrogen and progesterone that your ovaries stop making during menopause. Hormonal therapy is fairly common as it can drastically improve the symptoms of menopause, and even stop some completely.

However, if you don’t want to go down this route, there are some substitutes that can help with the more unpleasant symptoms. Antidepressants, for example, can be used to help treat mood swings, and there are some OTC medications that can help with hot flashes.

You can also visit your doctor and be prescribed a sleep aid if you are struggling to fall or stay asleep, and you may also find that some OTC sleep aids can do the job as well.

Non-Hormonal Treatments 

There are also several non-hormonal routes you can go that could make a difference. Firstly, you can make some dietary changes, such as cutting out caffeine and spicy food to limit the effects of hot flashes and eating foods that are high in isoflavones. This chemical is known as plant estrogen, and while it doesn’t replace the estrogen in your body, it could help to lessen the effects of some symptoms.

Exercise can be a big help to those suffering from mood swings or those who are struggling to sleep. Considering it makes you tired, regular exercise can make your body far more relaxed and ready for sleep each night.

Exercise has also been shown to release good chemicals into the brain and help with stress and anxiety; this can potentially help with any mood changes you may experience. Finally, you can join a support group of women going through similar things.

Not only does this give you a space to talk about your journey with those who know what you are going through, but you can also learn a few potential tips or tricks to help with some symptoms.

Final Thoughts

Menopause is in no way a death sentence of any kind, and while it can be difficult to go through, you do have several routes to go down to help you get through it, no matter what you are experiencing or how you would prefer to go about it.

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