As a woman ages, the ovaries age and their function declines, resulting in ovulation and production of female hormones no longer possible. Menopause refers to a decrease in ovulation and ovarian hormone secretion due to aging of the ovaries. Menopause usually starts in the mid to late 40s and progresses in a gradual form, and although there are slight differences between individuals, it lasts on average for about 4 to 7 years. Because the cause of menopause is the aging of the ovaries, it is one of the natural processes of change in the body rather than the occurrence of diseases. Ovaries have two main functions: ovulate eggs and secrete female hormones estrogen and progesterone. If these symptoms of menopause are severe and not properly treated, they can affect the quality of life and increase the risk of developing various diseases. Therefore, it is recommended to understand the various prognostic symptoms that appear during menopause, and to devise appropriate treatment and coping methods. Now, let’s take a look at some of the prognostic symptoms that can appear during menopause.
Various symptoms appear due to hormonal changes during menopause, and the most common symptom is irregular menstrual cycle. In addition, hot flushes appear in one part of the upper body, causing the neck and face to become red. It is reported that hot flashes are experienced by about 70% of women entering menopause. In addition, changes in estrogen may decrease the elasticity of the pelvic organs, including the bladder and urethra, and cause urination-related abnormalities such as frequent urination, urgency, and incontinence. This causes the proliferation of various germs. In addition, the decrease in estrogen secretion causes changes in the skin joint system, which can lead to symptoms such as dry skin, joint pain, and muscle pain. In addition, the deficiency of female hormones can cause mental instability, which can lead to problems such as difficulty concentrating and memory loss, irritability, and anxiety. Other symptoms such as frequent fatigue and lethargy also appear during menopause, and it is known that about 40% of women in the menopause age actually experience these symptoms. As mentioned before, these symptoms of menopause usually improve in about 1 to 2 years after menopause. However, if the symptoms are not treated when the symptoms are severe, various physical and mental abnormalities can cause a decrease in the quality of life, psychological problems such as depression and anxiety, and problems such as sleep disorders. In addition, as estrogen decreases during menopause, it causes an increase in blood cholesterol, which affects the development of vascular diseases such as heart disease and stroke. Also, a decrease in female hormones affects the normal composition of bone density, which can easily lead to osteoporosis and fractures. Therefore, it is important to understand the various related symptoms well, to receive appropriate diagnosis and treatment, and to continue various lifestyle habits to alleviate symptoms.
How to deal with and manage menopause
1. Appropriate diagnosis and treatment
Treatment of menopause is aimed at alleviating accompanying symptoms and preventing the occurrence of diseases that can be caused by a lack of female hormones. Based on your family history, you will be asked whether you have malignant tumors, cardiovascular disease, or osteoporosis, and your past medical history will be checked and your psycho-psychological situation will be discussed. Afterwards, a systemic examination including blood pressure and weight measurement, breast ultrasound examination, and bone density examination will be performed. And, according to the diagnosis result, the treatment process is carried out according to the major symptoms such as changes in the menstrual cycle and hot flashes. Estrogen hormone therapy, which supplements the female hormone deficient due to menopause, is administered. In addition, osteoporosis drugs that increase bone density and reduce the risk of fracture can be prescribed and treated.
2. Eat foods that help improve symptoms
As menopausal symptoms appear due to the decrease in female hormone secretion, eating estrogen-rich foods can be an important management method. Various foods such as beans, tofu, cheonggukjang, pomegranate, raspberry, and arrowroot act similar to estrogen, the female hormone, during the process of absorption into the body, so it can help alleviate symptoms of menopause. It is also important to consume foods with low fat content such as fruits, vegetables, and grains, and to prevent osteoporosis, it is recommended to eat a balanced diet of milk rich in calcium and vitamin D, anchovies, cheese, and salmon. On the other hand, excessive consumption of hot or spicy foods may worsen symptoms such as hot flashes, so intake should be controlled.
3. Steady exercise
Exercising regularly for at least 30 minutes a day is also important in preventing and managing various symptoms during menopause. For this kind of steady exercise, walking, jogging, or lifting an appropriate weight at least 5 times a week is very helpful. In particular, as it helps increase bone density with muscle strength that is strengthened through muscle exercise, it is also effective in preventing fractures due to decreased bone density. In addition, exposure to sunlight during exercise helps the smooth synthesis of neurotransmitters such as serotonin, which helps reduce sleep disorders and depression, which often occur during menopause, and increases bone density by helping the body synthesize vitamin D, which is involved in calcium absorption. will help However, it is recommended to be careful as exposure to sunlight for too long can cause damage to the skin caused by UV rays. In addition, it is recommended to limit excessive drinking and smoking, as they exacerbate related symptoms and increase the risk of stroke and heart disease.