As for what other side effects or symptoms menopause can bring, Dr Nitu shared: “Eight out of 10 women suffer from hot flushes, the most common symptom of menopause but only two to three out of ten have the confidence to seek medical advice.
“Many say they feel dismissed or not taken seriously or they feel they may be wasting a doctor’s time and often suffer silently.
“There are over 34 symptoms described and associated with menopause. Hot flushes and night sweats are the most common.
“Others include lack of interest in sex, lowered libido, vaginal dryness, urinary and bowel symptoms, dry skin, tiredness and fatigue, sleep disturbances, anxiety, depression, mood swings, lack of concentration, female pattern hair loss, excess facial hair, and unwanted weight gain.
“Many of these symptoms of menopause start several years before during the perimenopause. Most symptoms settle in the vast majority a few years into menopause although one in 10 has symptoms even a decade later,” she added.
Dr Nitu was also asked about the stigma and taboo around menopause, and what she thinks can be done to change this.
She said: “Historically women’s health issues were never discussed, and this is unfortunately still the case for many women’s health conditions or issues faced at different stages of life, whether it be periods or menopause.
“The overall value attached to women whether it is in the workplace, media or in society has been mistakenly linked to being and looking younger, so menopause and menopausal symptoms are never openly spoken about, or adequate support offered.
“2000 women doctors surveyed by the BMA pre covid highlighted a lack of support for many and a huge reluctance to discuss menopausal symptoms with managers and colleagues.
“90 percent of female doctors said it affected their ability to work with 38 percent said the impact was significant, resulting in many considering leaving the medical workforce,” the expert continued.
“Fear of the unknown, fear of discrimination and misinformation about ageing are also some of the reasons why there is a reluctance for women to come forward.
“Lack of clear information, a lack of good public awareness education and campaigns, and failure to communicate to the wider public can have a tremendous impact on how women approach menopause.
“There should be education from early in life on what women can expect in this phase of life and what they can do to help themselves as well as medical help that is available to them and reinforced throughout.
“A proactive approach by employers is key to retaining senior and experienced staff.”