When women tell their family and friends that they are going through menopause, the myths suddenly come out of the woodwork with convictions that seem to make sense. Given the many symptoms that women go through, often separating fact from fiction can be interesting, but important enough to ease the mental attitude and to help go through this transition in a woman’s life cycle.
Some common menopause myths include:
1. Menopause Begins at Age 50
The average age of women to undergo menopause is 52, even though many women experience menopause in their 40s and some as late as their 60s. However, the normal age for women is between 45 and 55 years of age.
2. All Women Go Through Terrible Symptoms
Men more than women have heard about the terrible depression and lack of sex drive that menopausal women experience. Not all women have symptoms during menopause. Researchers believe that DNA and lifestyle has more to do about the intensity of menopausal symptoms than this normal life change itself. However, hot flashes at varying levels is experienced by all menopausal women.
3. Menopause Brings on Lack of Libido
Decreased sexual desire is considered a sign of hormonal imbalance which has a great effect on the physical and emotional side of a woman’s sex life. Lower levels of estrogen can cause a decrease in blood supply to the vagina can affect the vaginal walls by drying them out which can cause discomfort during intercourse. But for the most part, many menopausal women experience the freedom of a happy sex life because of the mental thoughts that they can not become pregnant.
4. Menopause Lasts about a Year or Two
Menopause can last from between 6 to 13 years. Whether a woman begins earlier or later, women experience symptoms and the length of menopause differently. There are many factors which influence the timing of menopause, such as genetics, diet, lifestyle, stress, cultural lifestyle, and a woman’s overall general health.
5. There is a Cure for Menopause
Menopause is a natural occurring process that all women of a certain age will experience. It is a normal process, not an illness or disease. There are many products, like over the counter supplements, hormone therapies, diets, and herbal products that help with many of the menopausal symptoms.
6. Menopause Causes Terrible Memory Loss
Cognitive or memory loss during menopause is not a sign of dymentia or Alzheimer. Menopause memory loss change is normal for some menopausal women, characterized by forgetfulness and loss of concentration. Estrogen hormone levels stimulate the brain’s neurotransmitters which are responsible for memory, mood and language. Estrogen dilates the blood vessels, increased blood flow, and improves the brain functions, therefore when estrogen levels are decreased, short term memory or fuzzy thinking can easily occur. Also, memory loss is not permanent, it only occurs during menopause and not for the rest of your life.
7. A Women Doesn’t have Hormones after Menopause
For women who are long past their menopause phase, yes, you can still produce hormones. Most of the production of hormones will stem from the adrenal glands. During menopause about 50% of the estrogen and progesterone is produced by the adrenal glands. Even though hormone levels decrease during menopause, the body still produces them, but in smaller amounts.
8. Menopause Causes Uncontrollable Weight Gain
Many women do gain weight during the menopause phase due to the fluctuations in hormone levels. But, the weight gain is centered around the abdomen due to fat tissue seeking to restore balance that has been reduced by the lack of estrogen and the fat cells begin to store more fat around the waist, hip and thighs. Eating the right foods and incorporating light exercise into daily regiments, helps to keep excess weight gain from forming.