Menopause is a natural part of the ageing process and it occurs when your body produces less oestrogen and progesterone and your ovaries run out of eggs.
Your periods become irregular and eventually stop altogether, indicating that you are no longer fertile and cannot become pregnant.
The average age to reach menopause is 51 - this is when you have gone a complete 12 months without having a period - you will then be post-menopausal for the rest of your life. However, symptoms may begin up to 10 -15 years earlier, though you may not necessarily connect them to the menopause. After all, what 35 year old woman has given much thought to the menopause at this age? Any symptoms she may be having would probably be connected to the after effects of pregnancy rather than the onset of menopause. So ladies, if you have a daughter or daughter-in-law, please make them aware of this, you will be doing them a huge favour and it could make all the difference to their future.
Statistics also tell us that on average a woman lives until she is 82 and if you have your last period around the age of 51, this equates to approximately one third of your life being post-menopausal, so it is important to make sure you are in the best possible health to deal with everything that menopause throws at you, especially once you reach 'the other side'! After all there is not much point living to a grand old age if it is going to be one full of pain and ill health.
The menopause is mother nature’s way of telling you it's time to stop reproducing and start enjoying yourself.
You have given your body up to puberty, periods, pregnancy, peri-menopause and now its finally yours again, and you still have another 20 or 30 years left to enjoy it all.
Each and every woman is going to experience her menopause transition in a different way.
Some may suffer every symptom going, in varying degrees of intensity, while others may barely notice they are going through the menopause. Just as some women may suffer every month with heavy painful periods and some are lucky enough to escape with a mild inconvenience.
But for most, there is no escaping the emotional roller coaster journey that accompanies menopause, which at times can be quite turbulent to say the least.
You think you know yourself quite well - what makes you laugh, what makes you cry, you know which foods you like, what wine you enjoy, what little things irritate you and which you are prepared to overlook. Then all of a sudden you find yourself reacting somewhat differently to certain situations - Since when did you cry at TV commercials? and has your partner always had so many irritating habits? At times you are going to feel like some deranged woman has invaded your body, who will surprise you and catch you off guard. She will make you angry or upset at the oddest things, her memory is awful, she can never remember where she left the car, let alone the car keys,her mind wanders, she has the ability to impart a 'spacie' type feeling on you and she doesn't fit into any of your clothes!!
The first thing you need to do is learn how to tame this body invader. Understanding her will help solve these unfamiliar emotional and physical problems she has brought with her. Feed her the right foods, make sure she follows a regualr exercise routine, but most importantly, pamper her, love her and look after her - She will respond well to this, and you will be rewarded with a menopausal lifetime of good health and happiness.
The following pages will guide you through the second stage of your life, helping you to turn that inner demon into your inner goddess.
You may also find the forum pages useful, where you can connect with women who are experiencing similar concerns.