Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when her period stops because her ovaries have stopped working. She will no longer be able to have children. This usually occurs around the age of 50 (average 52).
It is a normal part of ageing. The ovaries produce estrogen and progesterone. These hormones have many functions and when they are not produced anymore women can experience a wide range of physical and emotional effects such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness. Estrogen can control other functions such as bone density, skin temperature and keeping vaginal moisture. A reduction in this hormone can cause hot flushes, night sweats, loss of sex drive and osteoporosis.
What is HRT?
HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) is menopausal hormone therapy which relieves those symptoms listed above. It can relieve a lot of women from the negative side effects of the menopause. This therapy have also negative side effects, in particular a small increase in the risk of breast cancer.
For the vast majority of women the benefits of taking HRT are greater than the disadvantages. This is a very important decision that you should make after weighing pro and cons and having had a full discussion with your doctor.
Do not forget that the menopause does not finish as many women think and that you will live the rest of your life in menopause. It is up to you to decide what type of quality of life you want to have for this stage of your life.
If you are worried about the risks of HRT talk to your doctor as the real risks might not be as high as you think. Recent bad press has scared a lot of women who are not receiving the benefits of this treatment. You should get the right information to make the right decision for yourself.
Author Rita Galimberti Femplus Clinic