Menopause is a completely natural process in which a female’s reproductive capabilities come to an end as the body produces less estrogen and progesterone. The average age at which menopause starts is 51, but some women can experience menopause much earlier or later than that. The experienced and caring providers at Advanced Women's Healthcare in Bloomington, IL, can help you through menopause by recommending methods or treatments for reducing menopausal symptoms.
Symptoms of Menopause
A woman is considered to be in menopause when 12 full months have elapsed since her last menstrual cycle. However, some women also experience peri-menopause as the body begins producing fewer reproductive hormones (estrogen and progesterone). Several symptoms can develop with the onset of menopause or peri-menopause, including:
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Cessation of the menstrual cycle
- Diminished sexual drive
- Irritability or moodiness
- Depression or anxiety
- Vaginal dryness
- Night sweats
- Hot flashes
- Weight gain
When to See the Doctor
Many changes can happen during menopause so it is important to know when to talk to your doctor. Women in menopause or peri-menopause are at risk for developing osteoporosis, due to the decrease in hormone production. Osteoporosis is marked by a loss in bone density, which causes bones to become more brittle and more prone to injury. Your OBGNY can help you take measures to protect your bones.
The average age when menopause occurs for most women is 51 years. However, some women experience menopause as early as their 30s or 40s, while others may not go through it until they are in their 60s. You should begin talking to one of the skilled and caring providers at our office in Bloomington, IL, about menopause when you are in your 40s or earlier if you are beginning to experience any of the symptoms associated with it.
Many options are available to women for managing the symptoms of menopause. For instance, topical lubricants or prescription medications can help with symptoms such as vaginal dryness and discomfort, while medications and hormone therapy can help improve mood and reduce hot flashes.
Your doctor will develop individualized recommendations for you based on your medical history, needs and preferences. Some women with a history of certain cancers should not undergo hormone therapy. The doctor can recommend alternative treatment methods for managing hot flashes and other symptoms when hormone therapy is not an option.
Talk to your doctor about menopause anytime during your 40s or as soon as you begin experiencing symptoms of menopause or peri-menopause. For help managing the symptoms of menopause in Bloomington, IL, schedule an appointment with one of the experienced providers at Advanced Women's Healthcare by calling (309) 808-3068.