5 Myths About Menopause You Should Know About - Step To Health

5 Myths About Menopause You Should Know About

Menopause is a time of physical and emotional changes for women. However, regarding this, there are some myths that cause confusion. In this article, we'll look at five of the most common ones.
5 Myths About Menopause You Should Know About

Last update: 25 November, 2021

Menopause occurs when a woman’s menstrual cycles end, and is diagnosed once menstruation has stopped for 12 months in a row. This process usually occurs after the age of 45 and is due to the cessation of egg production by the ovaries. Most women view the arrival of this stage with concern, as there are a lot of myths about menopause, and false information about the symptoms and what could really happen once menstrual cycles end.

So, and even though each woman is unique and experiences menopause in a different way, it’s a good idea to clarify certain ideas and beliefs about this topic. Find out what they are in this article!

Some myths about menopause

Myths about menopause.
In order not to end up believing some myths about menopause, it’s best to have regular checkups when reaching this stage.

1. The later the first menstruation, the longer it will take to reach menopause

Many women believe that if the first menstruation came at age 15, the onset of menopause will also be delayed. This can’t be assured, however, as the time from the appearance of the first period until its complete disappearance usually varies greatly from woman to woman.

In fact, a study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinics of North America, indicates that factors such as maternal age, body mass index, diet, cigarette consumption, among others, could have an impact on the age when menstruation ceases.

2. Sexual desire diminishes or even ends

This is another of our common myths about menopause. Some people think that when a woman’s period stops, they’ll enter a phase of apathy when it comes to sex. However, it’s most likely that what you’ll experience during this time is vaginal dryness, which makes sexual intercourse painful.

Vaginal atrophy is a condition that affects more than half of menopausal women, as suggested by a study published in the International Journal of Women’s Health, which also clarifies that only 25% of them receive adequate treatment.

On the other hand, it should be noted that the lack of libido or sexual desire could be associated with a hormonal imbalance that can be treated. Therefore, it’s important to consult a doctor.

3. Hot flashes are one of the main symptoms

This idea is very common. However, it should be noted that this isn’t always the case, as some women don’t experience this symptom or don’t notice it because it seems to be rather mild.

Also, according to the American Association of Retired Persons, although approximately 1 in 4 women experiences hot flashes early on, some women may experience hot flashes many years after menopause has occurred, or not at all.

Therefore, it’s worth remembering once again that each woman is unique and will have a particular symptomatology. However, your doctor can help you find suitable treatment for this symptom if it occurs.

A woman fanning herself.
Although many women consider hot flashes to be part of menopause, they aren’t the main symptom in all women.

4. All women gain weight

This is one of the main concerns of women when they think about this stage. However, the publication mentioned above states that menopause itself doesn’t cause weight gain, but it does cause abdominal fat gain.

This is because estrogen levels are affected, shifting fat storage to the stomach and no longer focusing on the hips and thighs.

However, it’s worth noting that, as time goes by, metabolism slows down, which may make it more difficult to control weight gain, although it isn’t impossible.

5. You don’t need to use birth control

As we’ve already mentioned, to know for sure that you’re going through menopause you need to have stopped menstruating for 12 months in a row. If we’ve only had a few periods during that time, we won’t know for sure that we’ve reached menopause.

Therefore, it’s important to continue using contraceptive methods, because, even though fertility decreases with age, there’ll still be a chance of pregnancy.

Birth control pills.
The use of contraceptive methods will be necessary until there is total certainty of menopause.

Is it possible to control the symptoms of menopause?

Although the symptoms of menopause can’t be prevented or eliminated, adopting good health habits, such as regular physical activity and a balanced diet, help women to feel better and better tolerate the changes. In addition, a publication from the Australasian Menopause Society suggests other interesting options:

  • Try keeping an appropriate weight
  • Exercise regularly
  • Wear comfortable, cool clothing to control the heat
  • Practice yoga and meditation

Finally, it’s important to clarify that menopause isn’t a disease, nor is it the end of a stage of our lives, nor the end of our youth. It’s simply a time when the body will need a little more attention and care. However, if unusual or intolerable symptoms occur, you’ll need to consult a doctor.

It might interest you...
Hormonal Changes in Menopause
Step To Health
Read it in Step To Health
Hormonal Changes in Menopause

Going through the hormonal changes of menopause isn't easy for almost any woman. New issues and problems arise are a challenge.