Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Can 40 Year Old Women Begin Menopause?

The average age for menopause is 51, however it is not uncommon for some women to undergo an early menopause. The definition of menopause is generally known one full year of no periods, along with typical menopausal symptoms, like hot flashes.

Menopause before 40 is considered premature, and a search for causes should be made. Even at 40, an effort ought to be made to look for some of the many causes of early menopause. Here are some conditions that can cause premature menopause.

1). Cigarette smoking lowers the age for menopause.

2). Infections of the ovary can cause menopause to begin.

3). Pituitary gland disturbances The pituitary gland is a small gland at the base of the brain that directs the production of many hormones, including the production of female hormones essential to having periods and ovulation. An underactive thyroid gland is another cause for early menopause.

4). Even normal occurrences like weight loss or excessive exercise can bring on the cessation of periods.

If early menopause occurs for whatever reason, the condition should be reported to your doctor.

Another important consideration enters the picture with a premature menopause. If you are menopausal at a young age, you are going to have years and years of no estrogen. That makes osteoporosis loom large. So this is an issue you should not neglect.

photo by Konstantin Sutyagin

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Radical hysterectomy caused early onset menopause for me at 34. Darn! If there's anything you can do to avoid it, I'd highly recommend looking into it!