Menopause Specialist

Connecticut Women OB/GYN

OB/GYNs & Women's Health Center located in South Windsor, CT & West Hartford, CT

For the average woman, middle age marks the beginning of a decline in fertility that ends in menopause, or the end of menstruation. Although this final stage in the female reproductive cycle can come with a variety of unwanted symptoms and health changes, it’s possible to manage them effectively. The first-rate team at Connecticut Women OB/GYN is dedicated to helping women manage the symptoms of menopause comfortably. If you live in the greater Hartford area, call or book your appointment online at one of their three office locations in South Windsor, West Hartford, and Enfield, Connecticut.

Menopause Q & A

What is menopause?

Menopause is a natural biological process that marks the end of a woman’s fertility. It’s triggered by a decline in the production of estrogen and progesterone, the female reproductive hormones that control menstruation and make pregnancy possible.

The production of these hormones begins to decline sometime in your late 30s, but menopause doesn’t usually occur until a woman reaches her late 40s or early 50s. In the United States, the average age for menopause is 51.

Menopause officially starts 12 months after your final menstrual cycle. For women who undergo a total hysterectomy (surgery that removes the uterus as well as both ovaries), menopause begins without a transitional phase. Although menopause signals the end of your fertility, it doesn’t have to affect your:

  • Vitality
  • Sexuality
  • Health   

What are the signs and symptoms of menopause?

During perimenopause, or the time it takes to transition into menopause, you may experience a range of physical and emotional symptoms related to the diminishing levels of reproductive hormones, including:

  • Irregular menstrual cycle
  • Hot flashes and night sweats
  • Weight gain and slowed metabolism
  • Vaginal dryness and discomfort during intercourse
  • Mood changes and sleep problems

For some women, the physical symptoms of menopause can lead to lower energy levels or give rise to feelings of sadness and loss.

Does menopause present any health risks?

Yes. Following menopause, you have a greater risk of developing certain health problems. Because the hormonal shifts of menopause can lead to a rapid loss of bone density and increase your risk of bone fractures, osteoporosis is a major concern for postmenopausal women.

Reduced estrogen levels can also increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death for all adults. Urinary incontinence and significant weight gain are other common health complications linked to menopause.   

How does hormone replacement therapy help?

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is the supplementation of reproductive hormones that your body is no longer making. It’s used to help address the symptoms and health risks associated with menopause. Low-dose systemic estrogen, which comes in the form of a pill, skin patch, gel, cream, or spray, helps:

  • Boost energy levels
  • Improve sleep
  • Relieve hot flashes and night sweats

Because the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis increases as estrogen levels decline, HRT also helps you protect your heart and bone health during perimenopause and after menopause.