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Understanding what menopause means for every woman. Understanding which change, which loss bothers her the most. Whether the maternity function, aesthetics, or sexual activity, social perception is always more negative than the biological reality would require.

This is, in a nutshell, what Willy Pasini explained during his lecture at the seminar "Uomini a lezione di menopausa" (Menopause lessons for men), a meeting organised by DEKA to help couples overcome the difficulties related to this biological event.

Menopause is a relatively long period during a woman's life, which, starting from ovarian changes, is correlated to psychosomatic, mental and behavioural aspects. Like pregnancy, menopause must not be considered a disease, but simply as a natural stage in a woman's life both in biological and psychological terms.
One century ago, European women would undergo menopause at 40 years of age and had a life expectancy of approximately other 6 years.
Nowadays, menopause usually occurs around the age of 50, and life expectancy exceeds 80 years of age!

Therefore, it is important to foresee all medical and psychological solutions that can help women to get through menopause, without seeing it as a mere loss of some important physiological functions, but as a moment of prevention for the 30 years that will follow. From this viewpoint, women are responsible for their own future, thereby preventing the unhopeful vision of their grandmothers.

First of all, it is important for every woman to identify the change or the loss that bothers her most. Is it the aesthetic function (for some women, the loss of their looks and the presence of wrinkles are a painful experience), or rather the loss of the menstrual function, or maybe the loss of the maternity function or of the sexual function?
As for the latter, the biological reality is not as bad as its social perception. Women's libido is mostly linked to its androgenic component (testosterone), which continues to be produced by the adrenal glands and increases proportionally with the reduction of ovarian oestrogen and progesterone. From a biological point of view, there is no reason why a woman should have a reduced libido. Women must simply take measures to prevent vaginal atrophy.

Some women are mostly bothered by the loss of marital intimacy (many 50 year-old women are negatively affected by their husbands' psychological and sexual difficulties) or by family losses (children leaving home, husband always busy at work, passing away of parents), although the empty nest syndrome is not as common as it used to be, when it coincided with menopause. Currently, nests are even "overly crowded" and 50-something women are less depressed, but more anxious, with panic attacks, because they have to juggle so many activities. Some women also have the problem of gaining weight.

How can you deal with menopause?

It is important to know nature and come to terms with it, without fighting aging. If necessary, some treatments can help:

  •  custom-made hormone therapy
  •  secondary symptom psychopharmacology, without abusing of sleeping pills and tranquillisers, since this micropolytoxicomania is quite frequent in women.
  •  various forms of psychotherapy
  •  the body approach