Women's Health Handbook Part 3: Tips for the 40's
The one thing that never changes-- is change itself. This is true for women as they move through life. That's why we spoke to experts-- putting together your "Women's Health Handbook." Tonight, TV20's Corrie Lovette has tips to manage your health during the 40's.
"I've noticed different things happening with my body like the energy level," Charlotte Kasper (51 years old) said.
Some call it "The Change of Life," and there's plenty of reasons-- good and not-so-good.
"Most women develop menstrual irregularities, whether the menstrual cycle is heavier or lighter. There can be mood swings, hot flashes, weight gain, especially in the central part of the body," Dr. Sheyna Carrocio said.
At 51, Charlotte Kasper is married with a full time job, she has children moving into their teen years, as she moves out of peri-menopause and into menopause. Her doctor, Anthony Agrios, says this an important time to start talking to your doctor about treatments to ease that transition.
"Many women don't need hormone replacement therapy, but there's still many women who do so it's important that we have all options on the table and then we can talk about a woman's particular health risks and decide what she needs," Anthony Agrios (OBGYN Physician) said.
As most women move away from child bearing in the 40's, permanent sterilization is also a consideration.
"A lot of women by their 40's are very against taking any type of hormonal contraception (birth control pills, depo shots, so on and so forth)...and they're ready to tie those tubes, so to speak," Dr. Sheyna Carrocio said.
Dr. Sheyna Carrocio adds that hysterectomies are also more common, for various medical reasons like heavy bleeding. Doctors say generally mammograms should begin at age 40, but there are exceptions to that rule.
"So for some women that means one mammogram in their 40's and none until their 50's. For others, it means every year starting at age 35. It really depends on that medical history of that patient," Anthony Agrios (OBGYN Physician) said.
Kasper's sister had breast cancer so that's an issue she pays particular attention to.
"I come to see the doctor frequently so that he can do the exams and I go and get my mammograms."
And there are general health concerns that doctors monitor more closely in the 40's.
"We start to see more problems with high blood pressure and diabetes, thyroid disorder becomes more common especially in women," Michael Cotter (Gainesville Obstetrics and Gynecology MD) said.
Depression is also common as the delicate balancing act of life continues. Diet and exercise become even more critical as the metabolism slows down. In the 40's, as throughout life-- managing change is a challenge.
"Just getting busy with life and not having the time maybe...two young children...and not taking time to do what I know I should."
Corrie Lovette, TV20 News.
Tomorrow night we talk to doctors about women in their 50's and beyond. For more information about women's health, click here.
- Women's Health Handbook P2: The 30's
- Women's Health Handbook Part 1: What to expect in your 20's
- Women's Health Handbook Part 4: Tips for the 50's
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