MENOPAUSE

The menopause is a natural part of ageing, but that doesn't mean all women find it easy.

If you're experiencing uncomfortable symptoms, or you're worried that you might be experiencing early menopause, our doctors will provide all the help you need.

The menopause is a natural part of the ageing process that occurs between the ages of 45 and 55 in most women.

Once the menopause occurs, you can no longer get pregnant naturally and your periods will stop. This is due to a decline in the amount of oestrogen produced by the ovaries.

Many women experience a range of symptoms as their bodies adapt to these changes. Our doctors are here to support you during this time and provide treatment for any symptoms you’re experiencing.

You might notice symptoms of the menopause long before it actually happens. Some women experience symptoms years beforehand.

While there are a wide variety of indicators, here are some of the more common signs of the menopause:

  • Irregular periods
  • Hot flushes
  • Sweating, particularly at night
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Memory problems
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Reduced sex drive
  • Vaginal dryness

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should see a doctor. This advice applies even if you’re not in the age bracket normally associated with the menopause.

 

If you’re looking for help to deal with the menopause, the exact nature of your treatment will depend on the symptoms you’re experiencing. Our doctors may recommend:

  • Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), which provides an artificial source of oestrogen in the form of a tablet, patch or implant.
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which is a talking therapy that will address any psychological symptoms you have.
  • Lifestyle changes, such as getting more exercise and eating a healthy diet. Your risk of issues such as heart disease and osteoporosis increases once you have gone through the menopause, so it’s important to look after your general health.

The usual reason for the menopause is that your hormonal balance of the body changes as you get older. Your ovaries produce less oestrogen, which means they stop releasing an egg every month. This is why your periods stop and you can’t become pregnant naturally.

This is a natural process for all women, so if you’re aged between 45 and 55, it’s quite normal.

Some women experience an early menopause and it’s not always clear why this is. However, possible causes include:

  • Surgery, such as a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) or oophorectomy (removal of the ovaries)
  • Some cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy
  • An underlying medical condition