Women’s Health: Decoding Premature Menopause

Menopause is that phase of a woman’s life where she ceases to have her periods and she is no longer fertile. This phase usually strikes a woman when she enters her 50’s. However, there have been cases where women have reached menopause even before they’re 40. This early onset of menopause is called premature menopause.

There could be several reasons contributing to premature menopause. These reasons are as follows.

Genetics: Women with family history of early menopause face premature menopause.

Chemotherapy or radiation: Sometimes chemotherapy and radiation can cause early menopause in older women.

Removal or the ovaries or uterus: Removal of the ovaries or uterus will cease periods and pregnancy too. This may influence several menopausal like symptoms in women even before they turn 40.

Chromosome defects: Women with chromosome defects such as Tuner’s Syndrome also face early menopause.

How do you identify premature menopause
Any woman who has not had her periods for 12 months in a row is said to have reached menopause. This is then also followed by signs such as hot flashes, irregular periods, vaginal dryness, emotional changes and sleep problems. If you face these symptoms, get your blood tested to measure the oestrogen and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) level to determine if you have hit menopause.

Women undergoing menopause and premature menopause experience reduced oestrogen levels as their ovaries no longer produce this hormone. Low oestrogen often can often lead to many health conditions such as osteoporosis. Since premature menopause sets in early, a woman experiencing it is exposed to such medical conditions at an early age.

The treatments for premature menopause are similar to normal menopausal treatments where the doctor prescribes remedies and medication to control the symptoms of menopause.

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