Menopause

gynaecologist singapore menopause - W Gynae

Menopause is a pivotal time in a woman’s life, signalling the end of her reproductive period. This universal experience comes with a wide range of physical and emotional shifts, all of which can take you by surprise.

A clear understanding of menopause, along with its symptoms, equips women to manage this transition with greater ease and confidence. With greater knowledge, you’ll be able to know just when you should visit a menopause clinic in Singapore for treatment.

What is Menopause?

Menopause occurs when a woman has not menstruated for twelve consecutive months. This stoppage of the menstrual cycle is a sign that she is no longer fertile. Typically, this process occurs between the ages of 45 and 55, with the average age being around 51. However, menopause can happen earlier or later, with the start of this process varying from one individual to another.

Menopause is a natural biological process, and should not be viewed as a medical illness. Menopause comes from a natural change in hormones, and occurs across a period of time, with each person experiencing a variety of significant symptoms during this time. However, menopause does not happen all of a sudden. Some unseen changes happen before actual menopause hits.

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The Menopausal Transition

The transition into menopause, often referred to as perimenopause, begins several years before menopause. This phase is characterised by significant hormonal changes, primarily involving the hormones oestrogen and progesterone, which are produced by the ovaries.

During perimenopause, the levels of oestrogen fluctuate and generally decline, but they do so in an unpredictable manner. This can result in a range of symptoms that vary in intensity from woman to woman. Some of the common symptoms associated with perimenopause include irregular menstrual cycles, which can be longer, shorter, heavier, or lighter than normal; hot flashes; sleep disturbances; mood swings; and changes in sexual function.

It’s important to note that women can still conceive during perimenopause, although fertility decreases as menopause approaches. Because of the irregular menstrual cycles, it might be harder to predict ovulation, making the chances of conception unpredictable.

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Hormonal Changes during Menopause

During menopause, the primary hormones in decline in a woman’s body are oestrogen and progesterone. The decline in oestrogen comes as the ovaries lose their reproductive function. With that, the health of the vaginal and urinary tissues, bone density, and skin elasticity can be affected.

Progesterone, another key hormone produced by the ovaries, also decreases during menopause. This hormone is mainly involved in preparing the uterine lining for pregnancy. As ovulation becomes less frequent and eventually stops with menopause, progesterone production significantly declines. This is the decline that contributes to the end of menstrual periods and affects the overall hormonal balance in the body.

Common Menopausal Symptoms

The symptoms of menopause can vary widely among women. Some common symptoms include hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, fatigue, and sleep disturbances. Women may also experience vaginal dryness, which can lead to discomfort during intercourse, and a decrease in libido.

Other symptoms can include weight gain, thinning hair, dry skin, and loss of breast fullness. It’s important to remember that each woman’s menopause experience is unique, and not everyone will have all these symptoms.

Hot Flashes

Night Sweats

Mood Swings

Fatigue

Sleep Disturbances

Weight Gain

Thinning Hair

Dry Skin

Lost of Breast Fullness

Menopause Treatment and Management

Menopause treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and managing chronic conditions that may occur with ageing. Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is a common treatment that can alleviate many menopausal symptoms.

HRT involves taking medications containing female hormones to replace the ones the body no longer makes. Non-hormonal treatments, such as low-dose antidepressants, can also be effective, especially for hot flashes. Additionally, vaginal oestrogen can be applied directly to the vagina using a cream, tablet, or ring to relieve vaginal dryness.

menopause Singapore - W Gynae
menopause treatment Singapore - W Gynae

Benefits of Menopause Treatment

Effective treatment of menopause can significantly improve a woman’s quality of life. HRT, for example, can reduce the severity and frequency of hot flashes and night sweats, improve sleep, and alleviate vaginal dryness. These improvements can lead to better sexual health and overall well-being.

HRT also has the added benefit of helping out in the prevention of osteoporosis, a common occurrence after menopause due to lower oestrogen levels. By boosting oestrogen levels, HRT can help maintain bone density and reduce the rate of bone loss. This is particularly effective when started around the time of menopause and continued for several years. It’s most beneficial for bone health when initiated in women who are at high risk of fractures or who have early menopause and when used for the duration deemed appropriate by their gynaecologist.

Consult a Specialist for Menopause in Singapore

Menopause may not always be comfortable to talk about but you don’t need to face it alone. At W Gynae, we have treated women with this condition for years and know the different challenges you face.

Tell us your needs, and we will provide the personalised care you deserve.

Frequently Asked Questions

HRT is generally safe but doctors will have to account for individual health factors, duration of therapy, and the type of hormones used. It’s essential to consult a menopause treatment specialist in Singapore to evaluate the risks and benefits.

Menopause can increase risks for osteoporosis, heart disease, and weight gain. Regular exercise, a healthy diet, quitting smoking, and moderating alcohol consumption can mitigate these risks. Regular health screenings are also important.

HRT is often used for the shortest period necessary to manage symptoms, typically around 5 years, but this can vary based on individual needs and risks.

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