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#Menopause is the cessation (stoppage ) of menstruation (monthly menses). Many women seem to dread the arrival of this phase of life and feel that life has now stopped. Menopause in their minds equals to being old, sad, depressed, inactive and affected by many diseases. The typical stoppage of menstruation (periods ) to them means end of sexuality and irregular periods brings in fear of diseases. Diseases such as obsesity , diabetes , arthritis , skin allergies , heart ailments , raised blood pressure ( hypertension ) are commoner in this age group of women. Additionally, heavy menstrual bleeding in their minds equals to cancer of the womb or the related organs and these fears create a lot of frenzy.

Menopause , the cessation of menstruation is actually beautiful and let us see how !

What basically is menopause ?

Stoppage of the menstruation (monthly cycles)  for 6 months or more is labelled as menopause and is a sign that the production of estrogen and progesterone; hormones produced by the ovary is reduced. These hormones are essential for pregnancy and fertility. These functions naturally are a characteristic of the second to the fourth decade of life i.e age of 20 to 40. The ovary* has preprogrammed quantity of eggs and they are produced until the age of 32 rather optimally . After that the ovary gradually starts to reduce its capacity of producing the ova and the hormones

What is the regular age of menopause ?

Globally menopause age ranges from 47 to 52 years. Indian women attain menopause by the age of 47 to 52 years on average. In some parts of the country, it is experienced around the age of 45 years .

Is menopause sudden ?

Usually, menopause is a gradual process and a phase as the waning of ovarian function is slow . There may be a subtle change in the menstrual cycle with gradual reduction in the frequency and the duration of the menstrual bleeding. Some women experience severely irregular cycles and some have missed periods followed by heavy menstrual bleeding. Some may have sudden stoppage of menses. Surgical removal of ovary or irradiation as in radiotherapy may cause sudden menopause.

Are there any signs and symptoms of menopause ?

Increased weight, hot flashes ( suddenly feeling warm or cold and skin flushes, breaking into sweat), increased irritability, increased vaginal burning and dryness, increased urinary frequency, forgetfulness, skin drying, hair thinning are all signs of menopause but all of them are quite nonspecific. Many other conditions can have similar symptoms.

How should I manage menopause ? : the menopause mantras 

There are some mantras to be adopted once you turn 40

  1. Eat in moderation : include more proteins, pulses and fibres and probiotics in your meals

  2. Increase your water intake

  3. Exercise regularly : alternate walks with muscle strengthening and cardio workouts. This will in turn  strengthen the bones

  4. Engage in recreational activities such as reading, writing, painting, dancing etc:

  5. Share your knowledge, life – experiences with the younger generation and your family and friends

  6. Have a positive attitude and understand your own body and mind and take it as a positive transformation

  7. Accept your wisdom and maturity

  8. Be content , serene and stable

Do I need to take any tests for menopause ?

Its a good practice to get a thorough checkup done with a clinician. It can be your birthday gift at 40

  1. Metabolic screen for diabetes, anaemia, thyroid disorders

  2. Physical check-up for breasts and the womb and the cervix

  3. Pelvic sonography and a Pap test from a gynaecologist

  4. General checkup for weight and blood pressure

  5. Eye -sight and dental checkup

It’s like servicing your car . If properly cared for you will be amazed how blessed our bodies are as humans

Do I do any self assessments ? self checklist of menopause 

Yes you can look for following things and improvise

  1. Your weight , gait , posture

  2. Ask your self : Am I eating a protein -fibre rich diet

  3. Ask your self : Do I get angry or sad more often ?

  4. Ask yourself: Am I thinking well and am i positive ?

  5. Ask your self :Do I exercise ?

  6. Ask Yourself: Do I need a doctor ?

Menopause is actually a new lease of life. Children are grown and they look after you now, sometimes boss over you. You are on your free will and can now have your own dedicated time. Your thoughts are now stable and your emotions under control and this emanates confidence of maturity and wisdom.

This also is the time for giving back to the family and society. You may need to look after ailing oldies or other members, babysit the young children of your family or nurse the sick. If you have free time it’s a good practice to involve yourself in some social cause like guiding the adolescence or teaching the deprived class of society. Finally, we owe everything to humanity and that will truly help you handle the menopause well.


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