Carla parks her car and dashes across my kitchen floor. She opens the fridge and empties a large glass of water in 3 huge gulps and in spite of the air conditioning, she is dripping with sweat. I ask “Carla…what’s with the sweat”. Carla responds that in the past two weeks she has generally felt unwell, experienced fatigue, breaking out in sporadic sweats especially at night. Carla turned 45 last June and I ask if she has thought about Menopause as a probable cause. “Wow….Havilah, I’m just 45. That can’t be the prognosis”. Trust me, I decided to give Carla a brief talk on the state termed “MENOPAUSE”.
What is Menopause? Another name for menopause is the climacteric. It is the time when women’s menstrual flows cease and they are no longer able to conceive. It is usually preceded by a number of symptoms which may or may not cease even after menopause kicks in.
What is the Cause? It could arise from a natural change in hormonal balance or as a result of surgery to remove the ovaries or some types of chemotherapy.
At what age does it commence? It usually occurs between the ages of 48-52 years but in some cases it could occur earlier or later than the average band width.
What are some of the symptoms?
- Irregular periods.
- Changes in the volume of menstrual flow.
- Hot flashes that are short periods where intense internal heat is felt resulting in profuse sweating and possible shivering as a result.
- Night sweats.
- Mood swings.
- Vaginal dryness and reduced libido.
- Osteoporosis (reduction in bone density).
Can it be treated? The severity of the symptoms vary for each individual and where the symptoms become very uncomfortable, prescribed medication may help. However, the situation can often be managed by lifestyle changes that include :
Keeping within cool environments
The right nutritional diet
Reduction in the intake of stimulants e.g. caffeine, alcohol, tobacco etc.
“Hmm….Havilah, that was some help. I think you absolutely nailed it. Now I have an inkling …it could be menopause setting in.”
“Carla, I think you should see your Doctor and once confirmed, please involve Chad – your husband to see you through the transition. It sometimes takes a toll on the family relationship – especially your partner”.
See you next week y’all!
5 thoughts on “THE CLIMACTERIC A. K. A MENOPAUSE”
Thanks very much for this important topic.
For the past 1 year I have been experiencing these signs. Sometimes I say to myself that am sick but after seeing the doctor and running different test that proves negative, makes me wonder what is the the matter with me.
Quite recently my doctor diagnosed it and since then , I am living with it.
Thanks Sylvia. Most women happen into menopausal symptoms without a prior understanding of what to expect. It can be unnerving though a natural ourse of events. Some lucky ones breeze through though without experiencing such symptoms.
Is it possible to also go through Menopause without experiencing any of the symptoms aforesaid. Can on just get hit gradually buy the bug or could the only symptom be a reduction in the days or periods between the menstrual flow?
Is it possible to also go through Menopause without experiencing any of the symptoms aforesaid. Can one just get hit gradually by the bug or could the only symptom be a reduction in the days or periods between the menstrual flow?
Each person has different symptoms and some persons actually transit to menopause without serious symptoms. Our body systems are different and react differently to hormonal changes just as happens with menstruation.