Menopause is a very popular name, but have you ever heard of climacterium? This term, although little known, is more familiar in this phase of women than it seems. Want to learn more about its meaning? Stay with us until the end of this complete guide.
Here you will learn what is climacterium, its phases, symptoms and how it differs from menopause. Let's go!
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- Climacterium is a period which marks the transition from a woman's reproductive and non-reproductive phase.
- It is different from menopause, although many people confuse the terms. Today we will explain the differences.
- The climacteric period can be divided into three phases: pre-menopause, menopause and post-menopause.
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What is the climacteric period?
Scientifically speaking, it is the gradual reduction of ovarian follicles, responsible for ovulation at each menstrual cycle.
As the years go by, ovulation stops as there are no more follicles to produce the hormones estrogen and progesterone, thus ending the phase in which a woman can have a baby.
What is the difference between climacteric and menopause?
Menopause is nothing more than the end of menstruation. Since during this phase the menstrual cycle becomes irregular and can be separated for months, menopause is only declared when the woman has not menstruated for 12 consecutive months.
The average Brazilian woman goes through menopause when she is 51 years old. When it happens before the age of 50, we call it early menopause.
The climacteric period encompasses the entire period of change in the female reproductive phase and is divided into three phases, as we will see later on.
Therefore, what we call menopause symptoms are actually climacteric symptoms. And they happen exactly because of the drop in the production of estrogen and progesterone.
Among the most common, we can mention heat waves, night sweats, mood changes, insomnia, tiredness, headache, decreased libido, vaginal dryness, among others.
When does the climacteric period start?
It can happen at different ages, but it is common that it starts shortly after the age of 40. This period can last months or years, depending on each woman.
The average is that it lasts for four years. During this phase the menstrual cycle can already begin to change.
What are the different phases of the climacteric period?
|What it is||Beginning of the natural fall of female hormones||End of the release of new eggs and the menstrual cycle||Period in which the climacteric symptoms remain, even with the end of menstruation|
|What causes||Menstrual irregularity and the beginning of common symptoms, such as hot flashes, mood swings, insomnia, vaginal dryness and reduced libido||Increase in the symptoms already mentioned and the emergence of other possible ones||May cause bone health problems, because of the significant drop in estrogen|
|How long it lasts||May start by age 40, in some cases earlier, and last for up to 10 years. The average time is 4 years||It usually happens around age 50 and is enacted by the absence of menstruation for 12 months in a row||It can last for another decade after menopause|
How long does the climacteric period last?
As the climacteric period starts around 40 years of age, it is expected that after 60 years the woman will be free of menopause symptoms.
How to treat climacteric symptoms?
The advice of the specialists is to reduce coffee, increase the consumption of vegetables and legumes, drink at least two litres of water and do about 30 minutes of activity a day.
Still, some women may have many symptoms well intensified, needing a more specific treatment, such as hormone replacement. Its benefit is that the treatment helps against osteoporosis, but also has contraindications. The doctor's follow-up is essential.
Different from menopause, which marks the end of the menstrual cycle, climacterium is a biological phenomenon that marks the change in a woman's reproductive phase. With the fall in female hormones, the ovaries release less and less eggs until they stop completely.
It begins around the age of 40 and can last for around 20 years, since the symptoms can extend even after menopause. We hope we have clarified the difference between climacteric and menopause throughout this article.
(Source of the highlighted image: fizkes / 123rf.com)