What Is Post Menopause?
Once a woman has stopped her periods for one year, they are considered to be in post menopause. During post menopause, women can still experience menopause symptoms as they pass through the years after the end of menstruation. For women who have undergone ovary removing surgeries (such as a total hysterectomy or double oopherectomy), post menopause may occur during their younger years. In such women, post menopause symptoms tend to suddenly onset and can be incredibly intense.
How Do I Know If I’m Experiencing Post Menopause?
If you have not had a period in one year or more, chances are that you are post menopausal. However, another way to detect post menopause is to ask your physician for an FSH test. During the fertile years, your pituitary gland supplies a hormone to your body, known as the follicle stimulating hormone — or FSH for short. The job of FSH is to prod the ovaries to release eggs. However, as menopause approaches, the ovaries no longer accomplish this job well. As a result, FSH levels jump, as the body increases FSH levels in an effort to stimulate ovarian function.
Severity of Post Menopause Symptoms
In general, post menopause symptoms won’t occur as often — or be experienced with the same intensity — as those that are experienced in the years leading up to menopause. However, many women find their quality of life, daily routines, physical comfort and emotional health become disrupted by the lingering symptoms of post menopause.
Why Hormones Matter During Post Menopause
Even after menopause has hit, your body still needs vital hormones in order to function properly. After fertility ends, hormone levels tend to deplete, creating a state of hormonal imbalance that can affect your entire well-being. Many women seek out modes of hormonal balance — even risk-ridden treatments such as hormone replacement therapy and bioidentical HRT — during their post menopause years for just this reason.
When hormonal imbalances in vital hormones — such as estrogen, progesterone and testosterone — occur, symptoms such as hot flashes, weight gain, mood swings, fatigue and loss of libido begin to appear. Once hormones are brought back into natural balance, symptoms of post menopause tend to vanish as hormonal harmony is reestablished.