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Menopause: “Not devastation, just a transition.”

Vekk med vannflasken?
Menopause can bring about certain physical changes which can be experienced as discomforting, to a greater or lesser degree. Around 25 percent women say they have no discomforts connected to menopause while an equivalent percentage states they are very discomforted.

The rest live through this phase of life with their problems. Some of the discomforts can be related to lack of oestrogen, such as hot flashes and night sweats. Other conditions are possibly psychological as a woman goes through a transition where she is definitely ending her ability to become pregnant.

The most common sign of menopause is a disturbance in a woman’s menstrual flow. Other usual phenomena are hot flashes, night sweats, pounding heart, incontinence, fatigue and poor sleeping. Hot flashes, night sweats and reduced quality of sleep are the given reasons for women seeking treatment for their discomforts.

Some of the discomforts associated with menopause can be signs of other conditions related to illness. Fatigue which often occurs during these years can, for example, often be due to low metabolism. Muscular and bone diseases also occur very often during menopause and are important to rule out before blaming them on “just” menopause.

When it involves psychological changes such as depression and anxiety, these aren’t for certain only related to hormonal lack. Research, however, has swung on this topic. There can be several other reasons as to why anxiety and depression occur more commonly in this age group. Diminished memory and concentration has not been proven for sure to be caused by menopause. The ability of ‘verbal fluency,’ that is finding the right words quickly, is however affected.

It is as the gynaecologist said to her patient: “Remember ma’am, it isn’t devastation, just transition.” It can be a comfort to know that almost every woman emerges from menopause into a new, changed and balanced life, without any major physical discomforts.

Saturday 26. January, 2008
Change of Life


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