Menopause is a natural process that causes major hormonal changes in women’s bodies. There are health issues that come along with menopause besides hot flashes and mood swings. Find out what these problems are and how you can effectively treat them. Be sure to consult with a doctor before undergoing any course of treatment.
Osteoporosis is the loss of bone mass, and though scientists don’t know exactly what causes it, they do know that the disease is linked with the decrease in estrogen that menopause brings. Osteoporosis can make you more susceptible to broken bones and other injuries.
You can help prevent osteoporosis by getting plenty of exercise, and taking in a lot of Calcium and Vitamin D. If you’re already dealing with bone loss, all hope is not lost. Drugs like Fosamax can help slow bone loss and reduce your risk of injury (Cleveland Clinic).
Estrogen is thought to have a positive effect on arterial health. The hormone helps keep blood vessels flexible enough to expand and contract as needed. The decrease of estrogen that occurs during menopause increases women’s chances of cardiovascular disease.
Prevention is key to making sure that menopause doesn’t negatively effect your heart. Exercise regularly, and eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Avoid fatty foods and smoking (Heart.org).
While incontinence is certainly a less serious health issue, it is embarrassing and annoying. Estrogen helps keep the urinary tract healthy, so the lack thereof can have negative effects.
Kegel exercises can strengthen the muscles that hold urine in the body. There are also several medications available to aid in urinary health. For more extreme cases, doctors may administer Botox to relax the bladder, or can even perform surgery to improve any structural problems that may exist (WebMD).
Menopause often comes with unwanted sexual problems. Low libido and vaginal dryness are the primary sexual side effects of menopause.
Talk therapy with a counselor can be helpful if you’re experiencing a lack of sexual desire. Vaginal dryness can be remedied easily by using lubricants such as Astroglide or KY Jelly. For more severe cases, hormone therapy (HT) can be effective in relieving sexual problems in menopausal women (Menopause.org).
Mental Health Problems
Mood disorders are maladies that many menopausal women experience. In fact, mood change is the most common symptom that women seek treatment for at menopause (Psychiatric Times).
Hormone replacement therapy has been shown to be effective in treating depression due to menopause. Antidepressant medications can also alleviate symptoms of depression (Psychiatric Times). As with any mental illness, talk therapy is extremely beneficial as well.