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When Do You Start Having Menopause

Diagnosis Of Premature Or Early Menopause

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Premature and early menopause is diagnosed using a number of tests including:

  • medical history, family history and medical examination
  • investigations to rule out other causes of amenorrhoea , such as pregnancy, extreme weight loss, other hormone disturbances and some diseases of the reproductive system
  • investigations into other conditions associated with premature or early menopause, such as autoimmune diseases
  • genetic tests to check for the presence of genetic conditions associated with premature or early menopause
  • blood tests to check hormone levels.

When Does Perimenopause Start

Before you experience menopause, youll go through a transitional period, known as perimenopause. This phase can last for months or years, and usually starts when youre in your mid-to-late 40s. On average, most women experience perimenopause for about four years before their periods stop completely.

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For people who cannot take estrogen therapy, or choose not to, Stuenkel says some drugs in the antidepressant family, such as SSRIs and SNRIs, can help with hot flashes. Stuenkel says, “While they’re not perfect, they can take the edge off and help enough so that women can get a better night’s sleep.”

There are an abundance of nonhormonal, nondrug treatment options for managing symptoms, some of which have significantly more evidence backing them than others. In 2015, a North American Menopause Society panel found that cognitive behavioral therapy and hypnosis were significantly effective in treating hot flashes. The same panel also found that popular herbal remedies are “unlikely to help,” although some NPR listeners who wrote in said they got relief from some of those treatments.

For depressive and anxiety symptoms, women may want to seek out professional counseling or a psychiatrist.

When do I need to see a doctor?

You might not need to at all. Some people sail right through menopause with little trouble. But if you are experiencing symptoms that are interfering with your life, it’s worth making an appointment. Some of these symptoms could indicate other problems that need treatment, such as fibroids or even cancer.

Ways to cope with symptoms

For people approaching this stage of life or who are already going through it, here are four steps for making this transition more manageable.

1. Get educated

2. Monitor your health

3. Practice smart self-care

4. Cultivate community

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I Got My First Period Early Does That Mean Ill Go Through Menopause Early

I have many patients tell me, I know Im going to go through menopause earlier because I started my period really early, says Streicher. The reason women think that is because they think menopause occurs when you run out of eggs. This isnt going to happen; were born with millions of eggs and many of those are never used. When you go through menopause is really about the aging of eggs and what causes them to age more quickly, she says.

The average age of menarche in the United States has gotten younger for a variety of reasons, but that hasnt made women go through menopause earlier, she points out.

Menopause And Complementary Therapies

What Happens at the Start of Menopause?

Some women can benefit from using complementary therapies for menopause. But it is important to remember that natural herb and plant medications can have unpleasant side effects in some women, just like prescribed medications. A registered naturopath may provide long-term guidance and balance through the menopausal years.Herbal therapies can often be taken in conjunction with hormone therapy. It is important to let both your doctor and naturopath know exactly what each has prescribed, and to consult your doctor before taking any herbal treatments or dietary supplements for menopause. Some natural therapies can affect or interact with other medications you may be taking.

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General Recommendations For Ht

Current guidelines support the use of HT for the treatment of severe hot flashes that do not respond to non-hormonal therapies. General recommendations include:

  • HT may be started in women who have recently entered menopause.
  • HT should not be used in women who have started menopause many years ago.
  • Women should not take HT if they have risks for stroke, heart disease, blood clots, and breast cancer.
  • Currently, there is no consensus on how long HT should be used or at what age it should be discontinued. Treatment should be individualized for a woman’s specific health profile.
  • HT should be used only for menopause symptom management, not for chronic disease prevention.

Initiating Therapy

Before starting HT, your doctor should give you a comprehensive physical exam and take your medical history to evaluate your risks for:

  • Heart disease
  • Osteoporosis
  • Breast cancer

While taking HT, you should have regular mammograms and pelvic exams and Pap smears. Current guidelines recommend that if HT is needed, it should be initiated around the time of menopause. Studies indicate that the risk of serious side effects is lower for women who use HT while in their 50s. Women who start HT past the age of 60 appear to have a higher risk for side effects such as heart attack, stroke, blood clots, or breast cancer. HT should be used with care in this age group.

Discontinuing Therapy

Safety Concerns

Women who should not take hormone therapy include those with the following conditions:

When To See A Gp

It’s worth talking to a GP if you have menopausal symptoms that are troubling you or if you’re experiencing symptoms of the menopause before 45 years of age.

They can usually confirm whether you’re menopausal based on your symptoms, but a blood test to measure your hormone levels may be carried out if you’re under 45.

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Is Hrt A Good Option

HRT is very effective at treating hot flushes. It protects against osteoporosis, too, although the benefit depends on how long you take it for and drops off once you stop. Taking HRT slightly increases your risk of getting breast cancer while youâre taking it, but this depends on how long you take HRT for, and the risk goes down when you stop treatment.

The risk of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism is increased by some forms of HRT but not others. Your GP can advise on the specifics of risks and benefits for you, depending on your medical history.

There are lots of lifestyle tips to cut the impact of hot flushes and sweats too, including avoiding woolly jumpers and polo necks; cutting out alcohol and caffeine; switching to a thinner duvet; and wearing several thin layers you can take on and off. Increasing the amount of soya you eat and drink may also relieve flushing, as can herbal remedies like Menoherb® or red clover.

Regular exercise can relieve hot flushes, protect your heart and help keep weight down. It can also protect against osteoporosis and type 2 diabetesâ and all drug-free!

With thanks to âMy Weeklyâ where this article was originally published.

What Is Hormone Therapy

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During menopause, your body goes through major hormonal changes, decreasing the amount of hormones it makes particularly estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen and progesterone are produced by the ovaries. When your ovaries no longer make enough estrogen and progesterone, hormone therapy can be used as a supplement. Hormone therapy boosts your hormone levels and can help relieve some symptoms of menopause. Its also used as a preventative measure for osteoporosis.

There are two main types of hormone therapy:

  • Estrogen therapy : In this treatment, estrogen is taken alone. Its typically prescribed in a low dose and can be taken as a pill or patch. ET can also be given to you as a cream, vaginal ring, gel or spray. This type of treatment is used after a hysterectomy. Estrogen alone cant be used if a woman still has a uterus.
  • Estrogen Progesterone/Progestin Hormone Therapy : This treatment is also called combination therapy because it uses doses of estrogen and progesterone. Progesterone is available in its natural form, or also as a progestin . This type of hormone therapy is used if you still have your uterus.

Hormone therapy can relieve many of the symptoms of menopause, including:

  • Hot flashes and night sweats.
  • Vaginal dryness.

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Can My Diet Affect How Well I Sleep

The following tips can help reduce sleep problems:

  • Eat regular meals at regular times.
  • Avoid late-night meals and heavy late-night snacks.
  • Limit;caffeine, which is found in coffee, tea, chocolate, and cola drinks. Caffeine stays in the bloodstream for up to 6 hours and can interfere with sleep.
  • Avoid alcohol. It may make you feel sleepy, but it actually affects the cycle of REM and non-REM sleep. This may cause you to wake up throughout the night.

What Is Menopause Its A Moment In Time

Menopause is a specific point in time. Menopause occurs when periods stop and youve gone 12 consecutive months since having your last period. Once youve hit that moment, you enter post-menopause.

Reaching menopause means that youre no longer able to bear children. Every woman except for those whove had their ovaries removed before puberty will go through menopause.

When does menopause start?

The average menopause age is around 51. But some women experience menopause in their 40s with a small percentage experiencing menopause even younger. Some women may not reach menopause until their 60s.

Theres no way to know your exact menopause age until it happens, but genetics seem to play a strong role. You may get a general idea of when to expect menopause based on when your family members went through it, particularly your mother.

Genetics arent the only thing that can impact when menopause starts. Medical factors can also influence menopause timing. When the ovaries are removed, symptoms will begin to show immediately.

Certain medical conditions like autoimmune diseases have also been associated with early menopause. Women whove undergone treatments like radiation therapy or chemotherapy are also more likely to show symptoms earlier.

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Southern Cross Medical Library

The purpose of the Southern Cross Medical Library is to provide information of a general nature to help you better understand certain medical conditions. Always seek specific medical advice for treatment appropriate to you. This information is not intended to relate specifically to insurance or healthcare services provided by Southern Cross. For more articles go to;the Medical Library index page.

Predicting Natural Menopause: Why Does Age Matter

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If theres not a lot that women can do to change when theyll experience menopause, why does predicting it even matter?

It would be helpful for every woman to know exactly when menopause will arrive. Beyond recognizing and addressing issues such as increased cardiovascular disease risk and risks related to bone health, if a woman knows her age of menopause and how long the perimenopause transition will last, it could help her make important health decisions, says Faubion.

If youre bleeding like crazy it would be helpful to know, she says.

As of now, research hasnt uncovered a way to determine when a women will go into menopause, but having that information could be useful in making decisions such as whether to have a hysterectomy or other invasive procedures, says Faubion. If menopause is going to be a few months or a year from now, you may choose to wait it out; if it’s going to be five years from now, you might want to go ahead and have an invasive procedure, she says.

The ability to predict when menopause will occur could also help with managing menopause symptoms or deciding which type of birth control to use, adds Faubion.

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Testing For Menopause & Early Menopause

Is it possible to test for and diagnose if you are in menopause?

The answer is yes.;

The changes in your hormones cause several changes to other hormones in your body which can be picked up with routine blood tests.;

What you need to realize is that all of the systems in your body are connected in some way.;

If you drop your estrogen, for instance, then that will alter other hormones that are normally produced by your brain to stimulate the release of estrogen.;

These hormones and prohormones can be picked up and used to help draw a picture of what is happening in your body.;

So which blood tests do you need to diagnose menopause?

Ive included a list below that every woman who is going through menopause should ask their doctor for:;

Its also helpful to understand what happens to these values during menopause so that you can understand where you are at in your transition.;

Ive included some of the general ranges to look for with these lab tests below:;

Changes In Mood Including Irritability Anxiety Or Depression

âLately I have been so irritable and a mood swing can happen out of nowhere. I can be so content and then something happens and I find I am getting into exhausting rows with my partner.â

While mood swings might be fairly mild for some women and dissipate over time, they could be life-changing and last much longer for others. The key is to recognise the signs, especially if you think you might be suffering from anxiety or depression, and approach your GP for diagnosis and treatment.

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Do You Live Both Poles Of Your Menstruation / Ovulation Cycle

Another important message I took from Wild Power is the information about our two poles during our menstruation / ovulation cycle. The pole of menstruation and the pole of ovulation stand as beacons that embrace our female existence. These poles are like the north and south poles of our being. At each pole something happens; at menstruation you bleed and at ovulation you release an egg. In between these two activities your being is in transition. The built-in imperative of your menstrual cycle is to facilitate this evolutionary process but if you only honour one pole you can end up sabotaging this natural process of initiation.

We firmly believe that much of our menstrual and menopausal suffering is ultimately a profound feeling of indignation from our own soul that this awesome process of evolution has gone unrecognized. The grief and rage that emerges pre-menstrually and at menopause, this grief has a direct line back to this loss. Much postnatal suffering is also the result of not being tutored in this initiatory dynamic, so the initiation into motherhood shocks us.

The first half of the cycle builds our sense of self. It is about going out into the world and take our place. The second half of the cycle makes us more permeable and allows us to see the world as one. It is a time to rest more and reflect. This was also the time that I could really get into my meditation, yoga and tantra practices effortlessly.

Is Having A Hard Time Concentrating And Being Forgetful A Normal Part Of Menopause

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Unfortunately, concentration and minor memory problems can be a normal part of menopause. Though this doesnt happen to everyone, it can happen. Doctors arent sure why this happens. If youre having memory problems during menopause, call your healthcare provider. There are several activities that have been shown to stimulate the brain and help rejuvenate your memory. These activities can include:

  • Doing crossword puzzles and other mentally stimulating activities like reading and doing math problems.
  • Cutting back on passive activities like watching TV.
  • Getting plenty of exercise.

Keep in mind that depression and anxiety can also impact your memory. These conditions can be linked to menopause.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Perimenopause

During perimenopause, you can experience a variety of symptoms. The reason: Your ovaries have been making estrogen since your first period. During perimenopause, the estrogen production decreases substantially. Your body has to adjust to functioning with less of the hormone, putting you into estrogen withdrawals. The type and intensity of symptoms vary greatly among women some just feel a little off or don’t notice anything at all.

Others can experience perimenopausal symptoms including:

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Feeling irritable, anxious or depressed
  • Night sweats
  • Hot flashes

About 80 percent of women will experience some form of a hot flash during perimenopause or menopause. Hot flashes happen when your brain has trouble regulating your internal temperature, which is a common response to having less estrogen. The shift in temperature may not be noticeable. Or, it may feel like someone cranked up the thermostat on your core body temperature. You suddenly feel uncomfortably hot and sweaty, or you may wake up drenched in sweat .

Is Heart Disease Linked To Menopause

Conditions related to your heart may arise during menopause, such as dizziness or cardiac palpitations. Decreased estrogen levels can prevent your body from retaining flexible arteries. This can impact blood flow.

Watching your weight, eating a healthy and balanced diet, exercising, and not smoking can reduce your chances of developing heart conditions.

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A Womans Genes Influence When Shell Hit Menopause

Genetics is probably the number one factor that determines when you will go through menopause, according to Streicher. It doesnt have anything do with when you start your period; thats a common myth. You dont go through menopause because you run out of eggs, she says. Its because your eggs age; you still have plenty of eggs, she says.

If your mother went through menopause early, in the absence of some medical reason, then you may too, says Streicher. There are still many things we dont understand about why some women go through menopause earlier than others, but it can be health-related. People with autoimmune diseases or thyroid disfunction tend to go through menopause earlier, as well as those with chronic disease in general, she says. Smoking has been linked to earlier menopause, too, she adds.

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