In India, as per recent and consistent studies, the average age of a woman for entering menopause is between 46-48 years. The pre-menopausal stage may begin between 44 and 47 years. In the United States, the average menopause age is recorded as 51.
Menopause is characterized by a sharp dip in estrogen. This hormone is used in various parts of the body. So, its decline affects you overall.
Symptoms vary. They can be mild to severe. Some may require treatment. Some women glide through menopause without problem.
A reputable gynecologist in Gaur City, Noida has listed out the commonest changes that occur at midlife in women. However, please note that some changes may be a natural part of aging and not directly linked to menopause.
1. Changes in menstrual cycle
Periods may become longer or shorter, heavier or lighter. This is normal. However, you must consult a doctor in case of:
- Extremely heavy bleeding
- Closely-spaced periods
- Periods lasting more than a week
- Your periods return after a pause of a year or more
2. Hot flashes
Hot flashes may last a few years after you enter menopause. You suddenly feel heated in the upper or whole body. Neck and face appear flushed. Some women get red blotches on their arms, back, and chest. Heat follows by cold shivering and heavy sweating.
Hot flashes usually last 30 seconds to 10 minutes. They could be mild or strong – even strong enough to wake you up in the middle of the night. They may occur multiple times in an hour, a few times in a day, or one or two times in a week.
Vagina becomes dry. This makes sexual intercourse painful. You also become more vulnerable to infections of the vagina and the bladder.
4. Urinary incontinence
This is not for all women, but some may experience it. You may leak during laughing, sudden movement, sneezing, or exercising.
5. Trouble in sleeping
You may find it hard to fall asleep easily. You may wake up too early. In case you wake up at night, you may find it hard to fall asleep again.
You may not feel like having sex. Or you may feel like having more sex. Once you go for one whole year without periods, you cannot become pregnant. However, you can still get sexually transmitted infection. So play safe.
7. Your body looks different
You lose muscle. You gain fat. Your waist widens. Your skin thins out. You may get memory problems. Your muscles and joints may feel achy and stiff. Scientists still don’t know whether these changes are related to aging or menopause.
8. Mood swings
You become moodier. You become more irritated. Scientists have still not found out the cause of mood swings during menopause. Try to keep yourselves happy. Learn new things. Socialize. Dress up and go out with friends. Accept your body and never feel less beautiful.
In case you are feeling depressed or emotionally unstable, please talk to a therapist. You can also consult the best gynecologist in Noida. She will give you tips to cope with menopause.