My mother is unsure of whether she has started the menopause... She is 42, and yesterday got her period very light and only for one day. Today she woke up aching all over a lot, with a massive headache. She is unlikely to be pregnant, we don't know if she has been exposed to a cold. Thanks
Posts: 165 | From: England. | Registered: May 2006
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"Menopause" is defined as a woman's not having any menstrual periods for 12 months. Early symptoms are hot flashes, night sweats, and being hellaciously crabby.
... just kidding on that last part, though it's true that our moms can become pretty emotionally off-kilter in early menopause. If we had hot flashes and night sweats we would feel crabby too.
Her gynecologist will be able to tell her for sure whether she's in menopause. Some women go on HRT (hormone replacement therapy), taking synthetic estrogen to deal with symptoms. Some women do fine without meds.
Menopause can also lead to osteoporosis because it's harder for the bones to absorb calcium without estrogen - so it's important for your mom to get at least 1200 mg of calcium a day.
Posts: 455 | From: New York, NY | Registered: Apr 2005
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btw, except in cases of hysterectomy or oophorectomy (surgical removal of female organs), menopause doesn't happen overnight. It's a process that starts with PERI-meopause. Women experience a gradual onset of menopausal symptoms.
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