Okay ladies, we all are going to experience this at one point in our lives, so let’s get educated and learn Understanding Menopause and what is happening to our bodies. The word menopause was first used in 1879. The meaning is a combination of two Greek words; mens meaning monthly and pause meaning cessation.
There are actually Three Stages of Menopause :
1.) Peri-menopausal – This is the stage of 4 – 10 years before the last menstrual cycle, and is when the ovaries start to produce less estrogen; this stage can last several years.
2.) Menopause – This stage usually occurs on average at 51 years old, and is defined as occurring 12 months after your last cycle. This is the stage where our ovaries stop releasing eggs.
3.) Post menopause – This stage is the years that follow menopause; and our symptoms start to ease.
There are actually Three Kinds of Menopause :
1.) Natural Menopause – This generally happens between the ages of 40 – 58 years of age.
2.) Premature Menopause – Premature menopause is usually due to an autoimmune disorder/ genetics; and is known to happen before age 40.
3.) Artificial or Induced Menopause – Typically rare, affecting 1 in 4 women and is caused by both ovaries being surgically removed; or after chemotherapy or radiation.
What causes Menopause ?
When we are premenopausal, our hormone levels are fluctuating; dropping in a steady manner, they often spike or dip which trigger the
symptoms of menopause; which include:
- Changes in our skin and hair
- Irritability and forgetfulness
- Anxiety and feelings of insecurity
- Hot flashes; inability to regulate body temperature.
- Vaginal dryness; diminished sex drive, including pain or discomfort during sexual intercourse.
- Irregular cycles
- Trouble sleeping, aching muscles, joints and even headaches
- Breast tenderness
- Weight gain
We can of course try to alleviate our symptoms naturally:
1.) Keep active – get regular exercise as this will help lift our spirits and improve our general health.
2.) Quit smoking – Smoking can actually make hot flashes worse; so its most important to try and cut the habit completely.
3.) Eat plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy, nuts, leans meats and eggs. Anything that is natural is better for us than processed foods.
4.) It has also been proven that taking Black Cohosh supplements will also relieve symptoms of irritability, hot flashes, anxiety and also is a great sleep aide.
Black Cohosh also provides a safe alternative to Hormone Replacement Therapy. Menopause is a natural part of the again process which occurs in all women, it causes changes in the balance of the bodies sex hormones. All women have heard their fair share of menopausal horror stories – relax; with self care and guidance from your medical provider you can look at this new stage in your life as a new blossoming of yourself. Your mother, grandmother went through “The Change” and you’ll get through it too!