Menopause-What to expect if you are between 40 to 55 years

July 9, 2014 by  
Filed under Tips for Ayurveda



menopause-what to expectMenopause is a natural transition in women that occurs at the age of 40-55 years. The menstrual cycle stops and sex hormone levels decrease, including that of estrogen, resulting in the condition called menopause. Menopause is not a disease. In Ayurveda, menopause is described as a natural effect of aging and does not reflect any disease.

There are lot of stories shared by our elders and friends that the thought of going thru’ the stages of menopause is so scary. While some women sail through menopause comfortably, others struggle to deal with its annoying or even unbearable symptoms. Let’s understand to have a clarity on menopausal stages in a women’s life.

Symptoms of Menopause

Menopause symptoms varies from person a woman to woman. This is due to differences in lifestyle, attitude, genetics, weight, and customs. However a few symptoms are almost universally experienced.

Hot Flashes

A hot flash is the body’s response to our decreasing estrogen levels. It is experienced as a It can be felt as a slight warming, slowing rising up and over your entire body; or it can be a raging fire from the depths, consuming your entire body.  Either way the warming is felt , this reaction is completely normal and more than 50% of women going through menopause suffer from hot flashes.

Night Sweats

Night sweats occur for the same reason as their close friend, the hot flash, and cause extreme night time perspiration and discomfort.  You will not be able to have a sound sleep due to being uncomfortable. They are clinically called nocturnal hyperhydrosis. Nocturnal meaning “night”, hyper meaning “too much” and hydrosis meaning “water condition.”

Loss of Sex Drive

Due to the hormonal changes in our bodies, you may experience a loss of libido (sex drive). The key to getting through this is to be open and honest with your partner about the reasons you may not be in a mood these days.

Irregular Menstruation

The main cause of menstrual irregularities of any type is a hormonal imbalance. In menopause, the main contributor is estrogen and its decreasing levels in our system. You may experience periods more frequently or less; and they may be heavier (clots) or lighter.

Vaginal Dryness

Dryness in vagina is a common observation by most women. Along with the loss of moisture and dry feeling comes a loss in elasticity as well. You may be prone to repeated vaginal infections easily, loss of bladder control and having sex may become a pain, literally.

Mood Swings

You are going through an emotional pendulum with the changes in moods. You could be prone to tears and angry outbursts for no apparent reason, and believe it or not, this is a normal symptom of menopause.

Tiredness

You will feel exhausted quickly. Your low energy and tiredness are all symptoms of menopause setting in. You will long to take a nap at any time of the day. This tiredness and exhaustion can be described by women only.

Stages of Menopause

Perimenopause

Perimenopause is the stage that many women go through before hitting full-fledged menopause. The symptoms of menopause can begin as early as your 30’s or 40’s. Symptoms like the hot flashes and night sweats are common early on in a period called perimenopause. It usually happens four or five years prior to the onset of menopause, but in some women, it happens much earlier.

Menopause

Actual menopause usually begins in your 40’s or 50’s, when it occurs naturally. Surgical menopause occurs when a woman needs to have a hysterectomy and a bilateral oophorectomy (removal of both ovaries). Women who go through surgical menopause have a far worse time than those who go through it naturally. Their body is thrown into a hormonal imbalance, instead of eased into it and this can make the symptoms much more severe.

Post Menopause

Post menopause is considered to be a full year after the menstrual cycle has ceased to occur by most Doctors. During post menopause you can look forward to a lessening or complete suppression of the symptoms.

Lifestyle tips for balance

  • Follow a strict routine: According to Ayurveda,sleep is important for the woman entering menopause or going through menopause, because both Vata and Pitta imbalances can cause sleep problems that will only make menopausal imbalances worse. To balance both the doshas and to have a good sleep, be sure you’re in bed before 10 p.m and that you arise before 6 a.m. This is the time of night when sleep comes easier and is more restful. If you stay awake past 10 o’clock, it will be harder to fall asleep, and you’ll also increase any Pitta imbalance, because 10 p.m to 2 a.m is the Pitta time of night, when the body needs to be at rest in order to cleanse and purify itself.
  • For both Pitta and Vata dosha, it’s important not to skip meals, and to eat your main meal at noon, when digestion is the strongest. Try to eat at the same time every day, and go to bed and wake up at the same time.
  • Be sure to get lots of rest during your menstrual cycle as you approach menopause, because this will keep Apana Vata in balance and avoid the more serious complications of menopause.
  • Daily exercise is also important for keeping all doshas in balance. Do yoga or meditation if you cannot go out for walking.menopause-what to expect
  • Oil massage twice a week will increase circulation, calm Vata dosha, and provide needed moisture to the skin.
  • Drink lots of water. Minimize on caffeine intake and avoid alcohol to keep Vata dosha in control

Consult a doctor for medical advice if you observe varying conditions that are not manageable. At times a friendly talk or guidance from a counselor will do wonders rather than medicine.

Take out time for yourself. Minimize stress and you can control the hormonal imbalances to a large extent.

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