Menopause refers to a stage in a woman's life when ovaries are no longer functional. Thus, no more hormones or ova are produced by the ovaries. Without hormone production, there is no creation of the lining of the uterus that occur in preparation for pregnancy; thus no more menses or shedding of these uterine walls every month. Menopause is typically a midlife stage in most women although this is not always the case. It is common in women during the age of forty to fifty years. It serves as a sign of the end of a woman's fertile life. Thus, it is a phase that signifies the end of menstrual cycles that occur on monthly basis in the life of a woman.
Causes of Menopause
Menopause is a natural occurrence when ovaries of a woman no longer have or capable of producing eggs. This results from the following;
- Failure by the ovaries to produce more eggs. At birth, a female child has approximately one to three million eggs. These are lost gradually in the life of a woman. By the time this female child attains her menstrual period age, she is left with about 400,000 eggs. At the menopause age, a woman usually has eggs fewer than 10,000 in her ovaries. Only a small number of the original eggs' number is lost via ovulation every month. Others die through Artesia.
- Eggs resistance to follicle stimulating hormone. In a normal woman, follicle stimulating hormone which is a reproductive hormone in women causes growth of the eggs. This hormone is very common in the early menstrual period of a woman. However, as a woman approach her menopause stage, eggs that are stimulated to start growing by this hormone develops resistance. Thus, a woman experiences a drastic reduction in the number of eggs produced by the ovaries. Estrogen hormone levels also decreases.
- Decreased production of estrogen hormone. Estrogen is a hormone that has a lot of effects in many parts of a woman's boy including the heart, blood vessels, bones, uterus, breasts, skin, brain and the urinary system. Loss of this hormone is associated with majority of menopause symptoms. Testosterone hormone production also decreases. This hormone is responsible for sex drive in women. Thus, as a woman approach menopause her sex desires decreases.
These causes combine together when a woman approaches the menopause phase in her life resulting to symptoms that reveal themselves differently in women.
Symptoms of Menopause
Menopause symptoms vary between women. There are also different types of menopause with different complication. Some women will start witnessing these symptoms very early in their lives. However, some may not have symptoms of menopause in their early stages in life. They notice them when they appear in combination. Such women may not even know they have reached the menopause stage in their life until when they visit their doctor. Nevertheless, menopause symptoms affect approximately 70 percent of women while nearing menopause. Typical menopause symptoms include the following;
- Hot flushes. These results from hormonal changes in the body due to the changes happening in the reproductive system. These flushes can be sudden or even transient sensation of heat or warmth that spread to different parts of the body very fast. They create redness that is quit noticeable on the female's face and the upper part of the body. However, not all women experience these flushes while approaching their menopause. In some women, decrease in estrogen production is gradual with few or less hot flashes. However, there are women who experiences sudden hot flushes due to abrupt stop of of estrogen production. Such women experience a really challenging moment with these symptoms.
- Night sweats. This refers to flashes that occur at night. These can be very intense causing sweating in some women. Some people consider them as nocturnal hyperhydrosis. These symptoms may be confused with sleep disorder but they are not. They are a perspiration disorder that is common to women in the menopause stage.
- Irregular menstrual periods: Majority of the women approaching or on their menopause stage experiences absent, irregular or even short periods. This symptom may result from a wide range of causal factors. However, the common cause of this symptom is hormonal imbalance. Menstrual period may become more frequent after twenty four days rather than the usual 28 days. You may also experience your period after the day when you expected them. Some women also get a period lighter than they are used to. There are also cases when a woman may skip periods in a month, go back to normal for a few months before it disappear completely.
- Libido loss and vaginal dryness: Production of the hormone responsible for sex drive decreases resulting to loss of sex desires. Some times this causes problems in a relationship if partners do not understand each other. Vaginal tissue also starts drying with decreased production of estrogen hormone. Walls of the vagina lose their elasticity making it hard for them to stretch during sex.
- Fatigue and mood swings: Fatigue is very common in women experiencing menopause symptoms. Chronic fatigue has a lost of impact in the life of a woman in this stage in life. Their work productivity, relationship and life quality are greatly affected. Mood swings also become very common. Some times a woman may be up and happy, and then in the next minute she is down. Mood swings can be very intense, uncontrollable and even sudden.
Basically, there are many symptoms of menopause. These may all be seen in a woman while in some only a few symptoms are noticeable. Other symptoms include sleep disorder, hair loss, disorientation, memory lapse, dizziness, weight gain and increased allergies among others.
Menopause Home remedies
Menopause is not a disease but a stage in the life of a woman. Therefore, one can only get remedies aimed at helping them cope up with disturbing symptoms. Such remedies include the following; Remember, you should always consult with your physician in order to get a proper diagnosis and before trying to incorporate these home remedies and herbal remedies yourself!
- Try This– Eating plants that can increase the level of estrogen in the body. These include soybeans, alfalfa, soy sprouts, green beans, cucumbers, pumpkin seeds, wheat, yams sesame seeds, apples, corn sunflower, papaya, beets, anise seeds and cabbage among others. All these can supply the body with natural estrogen. They also help in the maintenance of the overall body health.
- Water– Drinking a minimum of eight glasses of water per day. This should be steam-distilled water. It can also be supplemented with 800 milligrams of primrose oil every evening.
- Try This– Toners can be used as remedy for dry skin. They improve the appearance of the skin while nourishing and soothing it. Two ounces of aloe Vera or water from orange-blossom can be used. A tablespoon of wine vinegar and size drops of rose geranium can also be used as a home remedy. Chamomile and sandalwood are some of the essential oils that can be used as home remedies for menopause.
- Skin Cream– Dry skin cream is another home remedy for menopause. This comprises of beeswax, vegetable oil, vitamin E, rose geranium and distilled water. However, it is important to note that paraffin should not be used.
- Lotion– Use lotion for vaginal dryness. This comprises of almond oil, geranium oil and vitamin E all of ingredients should be mixed together and applied on the inside and outside of the vagina at least twice per day.
- Exercise– Exercise is also another important home remedy. It helps in improving the overall health reducing the intense of hot flashes.
- Red clover isoflavone– Red clover isoflavone is a great herbal product that you can use to treat menopause. This is a great herb that has a positive effect on the rate of bone loss, helps improve cardiovascular health. It also helps reduce the effect of hot flashes.
- Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidus– Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidus are the other herbal remedies that you can go for treating menopause. These herbs are effectively mainly because they help in utilization of estrogen and also help with metabolism and reduce yeast infections.
- Black Cohosh– Black Cohosh is the other recommended herbal remedy for menopause that you can go for. You just need to take 20 to 60 mg three times a day and you will also reduce the effects of menopause symptoms.
- Dong Quai– You can also go for the Dong Quai which is a great herbal cure for menopause. You just need to take about 500 mg to 1000 mg 2 to 3 times a day of the herb.
- Evening primrose oil– Evening primrose oil is the other product that you can try and prevent the effects of menopause. It helps relief one from certain symptoms of menopause like painful and sore joints.
- Chasteberry– You can also try Chasteberry if you want to treat or prevent menopause. It is known for inhibiting prolactin a natural hormone that acts mainly on breast. It helps prevent or reduce breast pain and premenstrual syndrome.
- Ginseng Root– By taking about 100 mg to 500 mg three times daily of Ginseng root can also help cure adverse effects of sleep disturbance, headache and gastrointestinal problems associated with menopause.
- Valerian root– Valerian root is also a great remedy for menopause. It has been used as a tranquilizer or a sleeping aid fro many years. You can either chew the root or make a juice of it and consume a number of times in a day.
- Try These– Lastly, Vitex Agnus Castus, dandelion, St. John’s Wort and Ginkgo biloba are the other effective herbal remedies for menopause you can try.
The list of menopause remedies is long. Other remedies include, quitting smoking, cutting down on coffee consumption and loosening the belt among others.
Diet for Menopause
Dietary changes are very important for a woman approaching or even in her menopause stage. A good diet should comprise of the following;
- Fruits, whole grains, and vegetables which are very important for promotion of a woman's overall body health. They also promote achievement of healthy body weight.
- Soy-rich foods are also very essential as they are rich in substances that promote production of estrogen in the body. They are natural sources of estrogen in the body of a woman. They are also rich in fibers content which is very important for a woman in this stage in life.
- A good diet for a woman in her menopause should also have edamame, tofu and soy milk. These foods have high soy amounts which are essential for women approaching or on their menopause stage.
- It is also important to cut down spicy foods and alcohol. This can decrease the rate of hot flashes occurrence.
Prevention of Menopause
Menopause is a natural stage in the life of a woman. Thus, it cannot be prevented and it usually occurs once a woman has had the last period. All that a woman can do is to observe;
- Proper dietary rich in soy to reduce the effects of it symptoms.
- Alcohol consumption and smoking should also be reduced.
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