Ageing is known to have an impact on the female reproductive system. Hormones are the chemical messengers of the body that governs the reproduction process. Fluctuating hormone levels are influenced by the age factor. One such indication is when menstrual periods come to a halt permanently. This is called menopause, which is a normal ageing process in women. Most women experience menopause at the age of 45-55, can occur much before in some women.
The phase just before the menopause begins several years before the last period and is called the perimenopause phase, few signs of it are:
- Periods are longer or shorter
- The frequency of periods increases at first, periods are then missed occasionally
- Variation in the amount of menstrual flow
Until periods stop completely, they become less frequent. Along with changes in the period patterns, the reproductive tract also undergoes changes in its physical aspects with age.
On the onset of menopause, ovaries stop synthesizing hormones(progesterone and estrogen) and releasing eggs, hence one can no longer conceive. The absence of menstrual periods for over a year indicates the commencement of menopause. The sharp decline in the hormone levels causes vaginal walls to become dry, less elastic, thinner and irritated. It increases the risk of vaginal infections. Hence age has a huge impact on the reproductive system.