Ob-Gyne Associates of Lake Forest, Ltd
OB-GYNs & Women's Health located in Lake Forest, IL & Grayslake, IL
Whether or not you have traditional symptoms such as night sweats and hot flashes, menopause marks a major change in your life cycle that brings with it new benefits and new concerns. If you’re in menopause or think you may be, the caring OB/GYNs at Ob-Gyne Associates of Lake Forest, Ltd. reduce your symptoms and optimize your health. If you live in the Lake Forest or Grayslake, Illinois, area, call the friendly, office staff today or request an appointment online to set up a menopause consultation.
Menopause Q & A
When does menopause occur?
Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when she permanently stops ovulating and stops having menstrual cycles. Although you can go into menopause early, due to medical conditions or surgery, the average age of menopause is 51 years.
How do I know if I am in menopause?
Menopause officially begins after you haven’t had a period for 12 months straight. However, you can develop symptoms as early as your 30s or 40s, during a period that’s called perimenopause. At that time, you may notice changes in your menstrual cycle and physiology, such as:
- Shorter or longer menstrual cycles
- Prolonged or heavy bleeding
- Hot flashes (suddenly feeling heated)
- Night sweats (sweating profusely during sleep)
- Sleep problems (falling or staying asleep)
- Dry vagina or painful sex
- Decreased libido
- Urinary incontinence
The symptoms of menopause and perimenopause occur because your natural levels of the hormone estrogen drop. The reduction in estrogen can also cause fatigue and depression.
What other changes come with menopause?
The low levels of circulating estrogen that occur during the first few years of menopause put you at risk for bone loss. Your doctor may recommend a bone density scan to test for osteopenia (bone loss) and osteoporosis (bone loss that puts you at risk for fractures).
Drops in estrogen also raise your risk for heart disease and stroke. After menopause, it’s more important than ever to eat healthy, stay active, and have your cholesterol levels tested regularly.
How can I manage the symptoms of menopause?
Menopause is a natural stage of life, but that doesn’t mean you have to put up with symptoms that dampen your enjoyment of sex or make you uncomfortable. At Ob-Gyne Associates of Lake Forest, Ltd., the OB/GYN experts tailor treatments to your individual symptoms. Some therapies may include:
- Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) — replaces estrogen, progesterone, and progestin
- Bioidentical HRT — plant-based HRT that’s identical to the structure of your own hormones
- Gabapentin or clonidine — controls hot flashes and night sweats
- Antidepressants — alleviates depression and fatigue
- Vaginal estrogen — topical cream that alleviates vaginal dryness
- Vitamin D and calcium —helps maintain healthy bone density
To find out what therapies are best for you, book a menopause or perimenopause consultation today by calling the Ob-Gyne Associates of Lake Forest, Ltd., at their Lake Forest or Grayslake offices, or by using the online contact form.
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