Every day in the United States, an estimated 6,000 women reach menopause — and more than two million enter this stage each year, according to the Mayo Clinic.
However, for many women, the menopause symptoms – which marks the stage of life when reproductive hormones naturally decline and periods stop – remain little understood.
There are a total of 62 different symptoms, experts say, and only 1 percent of women currently experience some of the key signs, according to Jamie Winn, a South Carolina pharmacist who is also medical director of Universal Drugstore, an online pharmacy.
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Winn shared six of the lesser-known symptoms of menopause, why they occur and how women can find relief.
Read on for ideas.
During menopause, women may experience fatigue due to a combination of factors, according to Winn.
“The main cause is hormonal changes, particularly decreased estrogen and progesterone levels, which can affect energy regulation,” said Winn, who has more than 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry.
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“Sleep disturbances, mood swings, physical symptoms and changes in metabolism also contribute to feeling tired,” he noted.
Addressing fatigue during menopause often involves a holistic approach, Winn said, including maintaining a healthy lifestyle, To manage stressand consult a health care provider for potential treatments or interventions.
2. Breast tenderness
Breast tenderness during menopause can occur due to hormonal fluctuations, particularly changes in estrogen and progesterone levels, Winn said.
“These hormones influence breast tissue and their imbalance can lead to increased sensitivity and discomfort,” he said.
Although breast tenderness is more common during perimenopause – which is the phase leading up to menopause – it can still be experienced during menopause due to these hormonal changes.
To rule out other, more serious potential causes of breast tenderness, Winn suggested seeing a health care provider.
3. Thinning Hair
Many postmenopausal women may notice thinning of their hair, another result of associated hormonal changes.
As estrogen levels decrease, it can change the hair growth cycle, causing it to become thinner and thinner, Winn said.
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“Additionally, falling hormone levels can affect hair follicles and reduce their ability to produce new hair,” he added.
Genetics, stress and nutritional factors can also contribute to thinning hair during menopause.
Some women see improvement with treatment options including hormone replacement therapy (HRT), Propecia or Minoxidil, but Winn noted that their effects can vary from person to person and should be prescribed by a professional of health.
4. Dizziness or vertigo
Dizziness or lightheadedness during menopause can also be attributed to hormonal fluctuations.
“These hormonal changes can affect the fluid balance of the inner ear and its role in maintaining balance, leading to dizziness and vertigo,” Winn said.
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Other factors, such as blood pressure fluctuationsEnergy drink consumption, stress, and age-related changes can also contribute.
If you experience dizziness or lightheadedness, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider to rule out other potential causes and receive appropriate advice to manage these symptoms, the expert advised.
Due to hormonal changes during menopause, including a drop in estrogen, women may experience increased anxiety, Winn said.
“These hormonal fluctuations can affect neurotransmitters in the brain, leading to mood swings, irritability and anxiety,” he said.
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“Other contributing factors include physical symptoms of menopause, sleep disturbances and life changes.”
To manage anxiety during menopause, Winn recommended a combination of lifestyle changesrelaxation techniques and, in some cases, medication or counseling.
6. Brittle nails
This happens often–an overlooked symptom is also linked to hormonal changes, including a drop in estrogen.
“These hormonal changes can affect the structure and quality of nails, leading to increased fragility,” Winn said.
“Nutritional changes and age-related factors can also contribute to brittle nails.
To solve this problem, he recommended maintaining a balanced diet, taking care of the nails and taking supplements if necessary.
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It is best to consult a health care provider before starting a supplement plan.
“Every woman’s experience with menopause is unique, so what works for one person may not work for another,” Winn said.
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“It is essential to work closely with your healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate and effective management strategies for your specific situation.
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