Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about menopause.
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What is the menopause??
It’s when ovulation stops and your oestrogen production reduces. The menopause actually happens gradually as you’ll notice your periods becoming less frequent over time with longer intervals between each one until finally they stop altogether.
For many, it’s the forerunner to the menopause, known as the ‘peri-menopause’ or menopause transition, that causes the most concern as it can affect you both emotionally and physically and can start up to 10 years before the menopause.
When will I have reached menopause??
You have reached the ‘menopause’ 12 months after your final period, which usually happens in your mid-fifties.
How will menopause affect me??
- Emotionally, it can affect your memory and concentration, make you feel tired, depressed, irritable, moody, and less interested in sex.
- Physically, you might go through hot flushes, sweats, chills, headaches, weight gain, palpitations, muscle pain, joint pain, urinary incontinence, disturbed sleep and thinning hair.
- You might also notice a change to the amount of blood loss when menstruating and have a heavier flow too. So you may want to review your choice of sanitary protection.
What happens post-menopause??
Although you may feel a little low, at least you will be free from all those peri-menopausal symptoms and you no longer have to think about periods and contraception any more. In fact, this can be quite liberating.
As you won’t have the same level of hormones, it’s vital to look after your overall health. If you have any discomfort, pain, swelling or bleeding after the menopause, make sure you go and see your doctor straight away.
How can a reduction in hormone levels affect me physically??
- You might notice your vagina becoming drier as the walls of the urethra and vagina may become thin
- The outward appearance of your inner and outer labia change
- There is an increase and tendency for vaginal and urine infections
- You might experience an urgency to pass urine or you might sometimes leak when sneezing or coughing
Will I need to use sanitary products after menopause??
You won’t have your period so you won’t need to use tampons. However, some women choose to continue using panty liners for freshness.