Menopause is defined as the permanent end of menstruation and fertility, generally occurring 12 months after the last menstrual period. In the United States, that happens about age 51 on average. However, there is wide variation from person to person. The signs and symptoms of menopause often appear long before the one-year anniversary of your final period. They include irregular periods, hot flashes, sleep disturbances, mood swings, vaginal dryness – just to name a few. Hormonal changes cause the physical symptoms, but mistaken beliefs about the menopausal transition are partly to blame for the emotional ones.
First, menopause doesn’t mean the end is near – you’ve still got as much as half your life to go. Second, it will not rid you of your femininity and sexuality. In fact, you may be one of the many women who find it liberating to stop worrying about pregnancy and periods. Most important, even though menopause is a natural biological process and not a medical illness, the physical and emotional symptoms can be extremely stressful. Many treatments are available, from lifestyle adjustments to hormone therapy. We recommend bioidentical hormone replacement therapy in the form of creams or subcutaneous hormone pellets and each patient’s treatment program is geared to his or her individual hormone requirements.
Dr. Woodward, a Dallas based menopause doctor, has over 30 years experience in treating hormonal issues and can be reassuring to you during the transition period and beyond. To make an appointment please contact us.