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Smoking and menopause

What we know about smoking and menopause? Is it very specific condition? What are risks? Can smoking trigger more problems during menopause?

Smoking and early menopause

Can smoking affect the age at which a woman will naturally experience menopause?

According to several studies, the smoking is significantly associated with early menopause. Recent scientific studies demonstrated the proof of earlier suggestion about links between smoking and early menopause. It was clearly demonstrated that women who smoke are experiencing the menopause at least a year or two years earlier than non-smoking women.

Several studies showed that smoking women had an earlier menopause, between the ages of 41 and 48, compared with non-smoking women who usually experience normal biological menopause between the ages of 50 and 55, on average.

Scientists discovered that smoking toxic elements have negative influence at genetic factors responsible for menopause timing.

Early menopause is a risk factor for heart disease, strokes and osteoporosis.

Smoking and menopause symptoms

Smoking and Menopause

Menopause is a naturally occurring stage in women life which means the cessation of menstrual periods – it is a time of the end of women’s reproductive function and reproductive years. Medically menopause is defined as the absence of menstrual periods for 12 consecutive months. Usually menopause happens between the ages of 45 and 55. During menopause, a women’s reproductive system changes, resulting in a discontinuation of estrogen production, the menstrual cycle and egg maturation.

About 70-75% of women approaching menopause suffer from unpleasant menopausal symptoms, including hot flushes, night sweats, sleep disturbances, abnormal periods (irregular periods, uterine bleeding), loss of libido, skin problems and vaginal dryness. Smoking can not only increase the risk of early menopause but smoking can also have the effect on menopause symptoms – intensity, duration and severity of menopause symptoms.

Menopause changes (mainly hormonal) already hikes women risk for heart disease, skin problems, osteoporosis, urinary incontinence and more. Smoking during menopause increases the risk dramatically – especially for cancer, heart disease, stroke and bones pathology. Smoking during menopause leads to many serious health problems in women, including heart disease, which is the number one killer of women in several countries.

Medical professionals mentioned increased and severe cases of menopause hot flashes and sleeping disturbances in smoking women. It was noted that smoking women will likely experience mentioned symptoms to a greater degree, which is making menopause much more unpleasant and disruptive.

During menopause smoking women have increased chances to break their hips and/or have hip fracture – 30-35% more often than non-smoking women. It was noted that the smoking duration (number of smoking years) can affect the risk of hip fracture more than the number of cigarettes smoked per day and/or per year. For every five years of smoking, the risk of hip fracture in women increases by 6-10%. Smoking after menopause (during post-menopause) has a greater effect on fracture risk than smoking before menopause.

So, smoking menopausal women are 30-35% more likely to break hips during and/or after menopause. Former smoking women have 15-20% increased risk of hip fractures.

Osteoporosis is a potential result of menopause hormonal changes (mainly estrogen reduction), especially in smoking women with “small bones”.

Earlier you start smoking, earlier you can experience health problems such as:

– Menstrual dysfunction – irregular periods;

– Reduced fertility – infertility;

– Early menopause – osteoporosis;

– Heart problems – heart disease;

– Different types of cancer;

– Short life – premature death.


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