The Menopause is a natural occurrence for all women. It occurs through a process when a woman has not had a period for 12 consecutive months and can no longer conceive naturally. A woman’s periods will not stop suddenly but will become less frequent. It occurs due to

loss of active ovarian follicles and reduced hormone levels.

It is most common between women aged 45-55. Symptoms can last years and some women will experience them up to 4 years before and after their last period.

1% of women will experience premature menopause under the age of 40. Early menopause occurs ages 40-45.

Common Symptoms Include

  • Less frequent menstruation
  • Heavier or Lighter menstruation than normal
  • Hot flushes, night sweats

Other Symptoms Include

  • Reduced Sex Drive
  • Stiff Joints
  • Headaches
  • Dry Skin
  • Change in weight
  • UTIs
  • Tender breasts
  • Anxiety and/or depressions

Menopause can be induced. The ovaries can also be surgically removed. Contraception must be continually used for 2 years after menopause incase of pregnancy.

It is also important to up your calcium and vitamin D to avoid osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a natural result of aging but the decrease in oestrogen can increase the chances.

You can request a blood test from your GP to test your hormone levels if you believe you may be starting the menopause. Remember, the menopause is natural and there are treatments available as well as help from your GP to make it a smooth process.