Menopause could be considered by many women a welcomed stage where they no longer have to worry about pregnancy and monthly periods. However, researchers from the University of Michigan advise women to be careful what they wish for as menopause could be a stage that might bring many unwanted consequences.
Moreover, this period could be followed by extended mental health and physical issues. Scientists from the Michigan School of Medical School and Public Health found that the younger the women are when they first start experiencing changes in their monthly cycle or other symptoms that can indicate the presence of menopause, the longer their transition is.
Women who are younger than 45 years old when the first signs of the menopause begin could experience almost double the length of the transition period. For women with menopause after 51 years old, the transition period is on average 4.35 years while for younger women, the interval could reach 8.57 years.
A professor of epidemiology at the Michigan University of Public Health, Sioban Harlow, described the menopausal transition as the time from when women first start to observe changes in the frequency of their monthly cycle to their last menstrual cycle. The period could last, according to the professor, from a couple of years to as much as ten years.
The symptoms of menopausal transition could include mood swings, irregular periods, difficulty sleeping, hot flashes, and night sweats. Some females could also experience decreased sex drive, vaginal dryness, and emotional problems.
The Study of Women’s Health Over the Country analyzed 1,145 ethnically diverse women. Their symptoms and menstrual cycles were examined between 1996 and 2006. The volunteers were from Boston, Los Angeles, southeastern Michigan, Oakland, and California.
As the amount and duration of menstrual bleeding raised during menopause, a transition that lasts longer could mean that women with abnormal uterine bleeding or fibroids might show increased anxiety in efficiently dealing with their blood loss.
According to Harlow, African-American women experienced longer menopause transitions and were also more likely to develop fibroids. Moreover, researchers believe that their findings could change the way physicians prescribe treatments for their patients and how to best manage the symptoms. When women must decide along with their doctors if it is the right choice to use hormones is one of the hardest decisions. It is mostly because the treatment has many side-effects.
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