Menopause
Thursday, April 9, 2009

Menopause is a normal, natural event and each woman’s menopause experience is different. In today’s 60 Second Housecall, Dr. Edward Hill takes a closer look at the “big change.”

Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when the function of the ovaries ceases.  The average age of menopause is 51 years old, but there is no way to predict when an individual woman will enter menopause.

It is important to remember that each woman’s experience is highly individual. Some women may experience few or no symptoms of menopause, while others experience multiple physical and psychological symptoms. The extent and severity of symptoms varies significantly among women. Symptoms of menopause can include irregular vaginal bleeding, hot flashes and vaginal dryness.

Hormone therapy may help your symptoms, but it is not for everyone. Taking estrogen for a long time may be related to problems like heart disease and cancer. Ask your doctor about the risks and benefits of taking hormones.

Many of the symptoms of menopause can be lessened or even avoided by taking steps to lead a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise can help protect against cardiovascular disease as well as osteoporosis. Proper nutrition and smoking cessation will also reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, I’m Dr. Edward Hill.