Menopause & Perimenopause
If you are a woman in middle age and are experiencing hot flashes or irregular periods, you may be going through menopause. Menopause is the permanent cessation of the primary functions of the ovaries, or the end to menstruation and fertility. It is a natural process all women go through in mid-life, usually around late 40s or early 50s. Technically, you do not actually reach menopause until it has been one year since your final menstrual period. In the United States, that happens at about age 51, on average.
What are the symptoms?
Even though menopause is a natural biological process and not a medical illness, the physical and emotional symptoms of menopause can disrupt your sleep, zap your energy and indirectly trigger moodiness or feelings of sadness. Common symptoms include:
- Irregular periods
- Decreased fertility
- Vaginal dryness
- Hot flashes
- Sleep disturbances
- Mood swings
- Increased abdominal fat
- Thinning hair
- Loss of breast fullness
Is there treatment?
Even though menopause is not a disease, it is common for women to seek treatment for the symptoms. Many effective treatments are available, from lifestyle adjustments and nutrition changes, to hormone replacement therapy.
What is perimenopause?
Perimenopause, also called the menopausal transition, is the interval in which a woman’s body makes a natural shift from regular cycles of ovulation and menstruation toward permanent infertility, or menopause. Once you’ve gone through 12 consecutive months without a menstrual period, you’ve officially reached menopause, and the perimenopause period is over.
The age that women start perimenopause varies. Some women begin seeing signs in their 40s, or even as early as their 30s. A common sign is when your periods become irregular – either longer, shorter, heavier or lighter. You may also experience menopause-like symptoms, such as hot flashes, sleep problems and vaginal dryness. Treatments are available to help ease these symptoms.
What is BHRT?
Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy, or BHRT, is a natural form of hormone replacement therapy that is very commonly used to treat menopausal symptoms. BHRT involves using hormones that are derived from plant or animal sources-and which are identical to your body’s hormones on a molecular level. These are taken topically to restore your body with the hormones it needs, such as progesterone. BHRT is a popular alternative to traditional hormone replacement for a variety of reasons, including less side effects and greater safety. As a result of BHRT, your hormones will be back in balance, which means you will experience relief from many of your undesirable menopausal symptoms.
If you are experiencing the nagging symptoms of menopause or perimenopause, call Med Stop today at (732) 366-1000 and find out how we can help you get relief fast!