Becoming menopausal probably isn’t high on the list of concerns for most young women. After all, it’s something that normally happens when you’re in your late forties or early fifties. But for some women, the ‘change of life’ arrives early – it can even happen when you’ve barely started having your periods in the first place. Early menopause, before the age of forty, can have a huge impact on a woman’s life.
Menopause is a normal part of aging. It marks the end of the part of a woman’s life where she gets her period every month and is able to have kids.
Body image and sex life
Premature menopause can be hereditary, or caused by autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. But it is also often caused by surgery – when both of the ovaries or the uterus are removed – or in women who have had cancer as a child and needed chemotherapy.
Whatever the cause, the younger a woman is, the more it will affect her body image, sex life, and romantic relationships, Italian sexpert Alessandra Graziottin explained at the 2013 World Congress for Sexual Health.
Whether it’s premature or happens later in life, menopause is caused by a woman’s ovaries making less sex hormones like estrogen and testosterone. These hormones have all sorts of crucial roles in the body and are really important to a woman’s sex and love life.
Oral sex just isn't the same
That’s why many women with premature menopause say they feel sexually invisible, Graziottin’s research has shown. With less sex hormones running through their bodies, a woman’s sex drive can drop and she’ll probably have problems with vaginal dryness and arousal. Other common symptoms are hot flashes, mood swings, and irregular periods.
Sex hormones are also important for making pheromones – the chemicals that give a woman her scent during sex. The smell of a lover is a major turn on for both men and women and guys say that when their partner is menopausal, oral sex just isn’t the same because she’s lost her taste and smell, Graziottin revealed. Women also have more problems smelling a partner’s pheromones when they’re menopausal.
If you haven’t had your periods for a while, or they’re irregular, there are a lot of possible causes. But anyway, it’s probably a good idea to go for a check-up. Doctors are able to diagnose premature menopause by measuring the levels of hormones in a woman’s body. And as far as treatment goes, hormone replacement therapy might be an option and can be really helpful with some of the symptoms of premature menopause.
How would you feel if you hit menopause way too early? Leave a comment below or visit us on Facebook.