As the biological clock ticks away, women who are above 45 years of age or thereabouts, experience hot flashes or hot flushes and other menopause symptoms, the severity of which can disrupt normal lives in some women. A natural biological progression, menopause brings on reduced production of the hormones, estrogen and progesterone, and as ovaries stop producing eggs, menstruation gradually comes to a complete stop.
Different women experience varied menopause symptoms ranging from hot flashes, insomnia, night sweats, mood swings, headaches, joint pains, decreased sex drive, and vaginal infection and dryness.
Recent studies have shown that menopause symptoms can last for at least 10 years, as opposed to about five, as previously believed. In a study, researchers studied 400 women aged between 30 and 40, followed them for 13 years, collecting yearly data about general health and menopause symptoms. 55 women were free of hot flashes, while 90 women experienced mild hot flashes and 259 women had moderate to severe hot flashes at least one during the 13 years.
Hot flashes continued for a period of 11 and half years in those who reported it, while those who reported moderate to severe hot flashes, it continued for a period of 10 years. The researchers noted that women, who had hot flashes when younger and before menopause started, continued to have them for more number of years.
Most women find their own ways of coping with the various symptoms of menopause, as these are inevitable, while for those whose symptoms are extreme and unbearable, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can mitigate the suffering, largely. However, HRT has several side effects including cancer risks.
Menopause is part of a woman’s life and women would do well to take some steps early enough to deal with hot flashes and other menopause symptoms , which include regular health check up to monitor blood pressure and cholesterol, exercise and healthy diet, adequate vitamin intake and avoid cigarettes and alcohol.