Menopause can start to occur anywhere from the late 30s to the mid-40s. Each woman will begin menopause according to her own biological clock. Someone may enter peri-menopause in which the symptoms are extremely mild. Mood swings, fluctuations in the duration and intensity of periods, headaches, weight gain, bloating, and vaginal discomfort are common symptoms that characterize menopause. As the symptoms begin to worsen, the woman may notice changes in the texture and tone of her skin, as well as pain during intercourse. Another big change for many women is the lack of sex drive. Hormone replacement therapy can begin to correct many of the symptoms.
Sexual dysfunction can be characterized in different ways. For some women, it can mean an there sex drive goes into high gear and they are constantly aroused. Other signs of sexual dysfunction that occurs near menopause can include painful intercourse that is caused by the walls of the vagina becoming dry and irritated. The thinning of the tissues can make sexual intercourse extremely painful. Sexual dysfunction can also mean the inability to reach an orgasm during intercourse or not being able to be fully aroused. Hormone fluctuations caused by obesity or menopause can also trigger various types of dysfunction when it comes to sexual activity.
When a woman enters menopause, their hormone levels begin to change. The body no longer releases the amount of estrogen that is needed to maintain proper function within the reproductive system. Estrogen also has an effect on other bodily processes as well. Hormones interact throughout the body, acting as catalysts to trigger other responses and reactions. When a woman's estrogen levels drop and menopause begins, the reactions can cause changes in the release of thyroid hormones as well as growth hormones in the brain. When menopause occurs and estrogen levels begin to drop, the effects are felt throughout the entire body.
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