Menopause is a natural biological process that signals the end of a woman's fertility. This change typically occurs in your 40s or 50s, with the average age of menopause in America being about 51 years. Althought women who have gone through menopause can no longer bear children, this natural change doesn't affect a woman's sexuality. 

For most women, the process of menopause usually lasts about two years. Because every women's body is unique, some women may experience little physicial effects while other women experience moderate to severe symptoms as their bodies change. 

Some of the more common symptoms of menopause include:

  • Change in menstrual frequency
  • Hot flashes
  • Insomnia
  • Night sweats
  • Fatigue
  • Mild depression or mood swings
  • Vaginal dryness 


Treating Menopausal Symptoms

While the physical symptoms of menopause last only a short period of time, they can interfere with a woman's quality of life. Talk to your gynecologist about treatment options, including hormone replacement therapy to mitigate the decrease in your body's estrogen levels. This treatment is not for everyone and your physician will determine if this therapy is right for you. Maintaining an acive, healthy lifestyle is important to managing the symptoms of menopause and maintaining good health for the future. 

Osteoporosis After Menopause

The decrease in estrogen and changes to your body's chemistry after menopause can leave women susceptible to increased bone loss, which leads to osteoporosis, or brittle, porous bones. Women with osteoporosis are more prone to bone fractures and breaks. 

Capital Women's Care -  Division 56/Charles Street OB/GYN offers screening for bone density called the DEXA scan to monitor your bone density. Certain medications and calcium supplements may help slow bone loss. Talk to your doctor for more information.