- Take the Menopause Quiz
- Essential Screening Tests Every Woman Needs Slideshow
- Surprising Benefits of Sex Slideshow
- Patient Comments: Women's Health - Menopause Symptoms
- Patient Comments: Menstruation - Symptoms
- Find a local Obstetrician-Gynecologist in your town
- Introduction to women's health
- Women's general health and wellness
- Female anatomy
- The female reproductive System
- Female hormones
- Diseases more common in women
- Cancer in women
- Women's cosmetic concerns
- Fertility, birth control, and infertility
- The mature woman - post menopause
Quick GuideWomen's Health: Nutrition and Health Care Reform
A woman who has children devotes a large proportion of her life to motherhood. Although a woman's fertility is limited roughly to a 40 year period, her maternal responsibilities may last considerably longer -- 60 years or so. And most mothers never cease being concerned about the health and welfare of their children (and grandchildren), no matter what their ages. In other words, a mother is a mother forever.
During the time of motherhood, a woman is responsible not only for the maintenance of her own health, but also that of her family. Roughly one-third of all children in this country (19 million) live apart from their fathers, which means that society still relies on mothers to protect and nurture their children.
The term menopause is used to describe an event or a period of time in a woman's life. In some contexts, it is used to designate a period of a number of years, typically the time when a woman is in her 40's through the decade of her 50's and beyond. Strictly speaking, a woman is said to have experienced menopause when she has had 12 consecutive months without a menstrual period. On average, menopause occurs around 51 years of age. The premenopausal process, however, usually begins in the early 40's. Diminishing sex hormone levels can be measured in a woman in her mid-30's.
"Menopausal" women represent a major component of the population. An estimated 50 million women in the US have reached menopause. Most women can expect to spend around 1/3 of their lives after menopause has occurred.
- hot flashes,
- mood swings,
- vaginal dryness,
- diminished sexual desire,
- trouble sleeping, and
- urinary incontinence.
Until the 1950's, society's attitude was that menopause is a woman's destiny and she should simply accept her destiny. Now there are many medical strategies to cope with the symptoms of menopause. Women are encouraged to think of menopause not as a cataclysmic event in life, but merely as a time of transition.