Capital Women's Care Division 67
OBGYNs located in Ballston, Arlington, VA
You may be celebrating the end of your period, but menopause has its own set of issues. The good news is that the experienced team at Capital Women’s Care in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington, Virginia, can help you manage symptoms and prevent complications. Whether you’ve hit menopause or are experiencing early symptoms, call the office or book an appointment online to learn about your treatment options.
Menopause Q & A
What is menopause?
Menopause is a normal biological process of life. You reach menopause when you’ve gone 12 months without your period. It also marks the end of your reproductive years.
Women may experience menopause anywhere from age 45-58, but the average age for women in the U.S. is 52. You may be able to predict your age of menopause if you know when your mother reached her pivotal stage of life.
Smoking and not having children may cause you to reach menopause early.
What are the symptoms of menopause?
Leading up to menopause, you may experience a host of symptoms, including:
- Vaginal dryness
- Painful intercourse
- Irregular periods or change in flow
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats and difficulty sleeping
Symptoms vary greatly from woman to woman. You may experience some or all of these symptoms, and they may be severe or mild.
Menopause not only causes symptoms you can feel but also affects other areas of your body, including your bones. Estrogen acts as a bone protector, and as your levels decrease, your bones lose density, which increases your risk of osteoporosis.
How is menopause managed?
You can’t stop menopause, so the team at Capital Women’s Care aims at managing the symptoms caused by menopause. Treatment options might include:
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Specific medications to treat hot flashes, such as gabapentin or clonidine
- Medical management of osteoporosis, including medication, diet, and exercise
What is hormonal replacement therapy?
Hormone therapy may be recommended to relieve your hot flashes. The medical professionals at Capital Women’s Care prescribe low-dose estrogen over short periods of time to help improve symptoms.
In addition to relieving symptoms, the hormones may also provide added protection for your bones and heart.
Do I still need mammograms after menopause?
The team at Capital Women’s Care can help you decide how often you should have a mammogram. But the new guidelines suggest:
- 45-54 years of age: annual screening
- 55 and older years of age: screening every two years
If you’re experiencing menopausal symptoms and would like to know your treatment options, call the office or book an appointment online.