For most women, menopause occurs around age 50, but each woman’s personal experience is unique. As a specialist in women’s health, Dr. Darin L. Weyhrich in Boise, Idaho, understands that each of his patients deals with menopause in their own personal way, and he works with each one to develop a plan to manage symptoms. If you’re going through menopause and need guidance, call the office or book online.
If it’s been 12 months in row that you haven’t had your period, you’ve hit menopause. Menopause is when you stop menstruating due to the natural decrease in estrogen and ovarian function.
Menopause is often associated with specific symptoms such as hot flashes and difficulty sleeping, but these are related to the changes in hormones leading up to menopause. The transitional period that occurs before menopause is known as perimenopause.
Although everyone is different, most women begin perimenopause in their 40s. As estrogen levels decrease, in addition to the hot flashes and disruptions in sleep, you may also experience:
Perimenopause symptoms can last for a few months or up to 10 years. But most women experience these symptoms for an average of three to four years.
Medically, perimenopause begins when your periods become irregular and ends 12 months after your last period, when menopause begins.
If you’re experiencing any symptoms of menopause, you should talk Dr. Weyhrich.There’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to managing menopause, and he can help design a treatment plan that fits your needs and lifestyle.
Lifestyle changes may be one of the first places to start to alleviate the discomforts associated with menopause. This might include modifying your diet to reduce carb intake and adding more physical activity. If you have hot flashes, altering the temperature of your living space may help improve your symptoms.
Hormone replacement therapy is a common form of treatment for menopause. If this is a consideration for you to help manage symptoms, Dr. Weyhrich determines the safest and most effective treatment regimen, which might include bioidentical hormones, a type of natural hormone replacement, or traditional hormone replacement therapy.
Dr. Weyhrich may also recommend nonhormonal medications to manage some symptoms, such as antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or bisphosphonates, which are medications that protect bone health.