World Menopause Day is observed on October 18 every year to raise awareness about the impact the condition has on the lives of women around the world. Despite affecting about half of the world’s population, menopause isn’t talked about as much as it should be. Observing the day is also an opportunity to encourage further medical research on the condition.
History of World Menopause Day
World Menopause Day was established in 1984 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Menopause Society (IMS) with the intention of spreading awareness about this condition that affects women as they age.
Menopause is a term used to describe the natural decline of a woman’s reproductive hormones, beginning between the ages of 45 and 55, when the body experiences its last menstrual cycle.
Common symptoms of menopause include hot flashes, night sweats, mood changes, and sleep disturbances. All of these symptoms can result in an increase in anxiety and depression. After menopause, women are more at risk of developing conditions like heart disease and osteoporosis.
Most treatments for menopause focus on symptomatic relief as it’s a normal part of aging, and, as such, is not a curable condition.
The condition has not been studied as much as it should be and is not discussed openly. Having a World Menopause Day was seen as a solution to these problems by encouraging conversation and research on menopause and its effects.
As people worldwide are living longer, more and more women are likely to undergo menopause. It’s important that we are prepared for the effects that might happen as a result of menopause so that we can live better, healthier lives.
World Menopause Day timeline
The IMS is established by Rodney Baber during the second International Congress on Menopause in Jerusalem.
The WHO and the IMS choose October 18 as the date to raise awareness and support women undergoing menopause.
Fully self-funded, the NAMS, dedicated to understanding menopause, is established.
The IMS decides that since local societies couldn’t easily organize awareness-related activities on one day, the whole month would be dedicated to spreading awareness about menopause.
World Menopause Day FAQs
What is the impact of menopause?
Women experiencing menopause endure a number of unpleasant symptoms like lack of sleep and heat flashes, which directly affect their productivity and quality of life.
When do women experience menopause?
Menopause affects women around the time that they reach 40 to 58 years of age.
What can help ease menopause symptoms?
There are a number of lifestyle changes that can help with menopausal symptoms, including having a balanced diet, taking medication, and limiting certain triggers, but further research is needed for us to understand the condition better, which is why observing World Menopause Day is so important.
How To Observe World Menopause Day
Share information from the IMS
Consider sharing medical information freely available with the International Menopause Society with people who will undergo menopause.
Set up a talk with healthcare providers
Work with your community leaders to organize a talk about menopause by knowledgeable healthcare providers.
Reach out to someone you know undergoing menopause
If you know someone who is experiencing menopause, be patient and understanding, and ask them to share their experience.
5 Important Facts About Menopause You Should Know
Women can experience menopause before age 40
When a woman’s ovaries stop functioning normally before she reaches 40 years old, signifying early menopause, it is referred to as primary ovarian insufficiency.
Menopause can increase the risk of diseases
The changing hormonal levels at this time can leave the body vulnerable to heart disease and some cancers.
Sleeplessness is the most common symptom
Research indicates that 94.5% of women experiencing menopause reported being sleepless during this time.
There is a transition period to menopause
Perimenopause, when the body is preparing for menopause, can start up to 10 years before menopause.
Women feel great after menopause
After the postmenopausal phase, most women report feeling better than they have in years.
Why We Observe World Menopause Day
Menopause is still a taboo subject
People around the world are still unable to discuss menopause even though it is a completely natural aspect of women’s health.
Menopause lasts a long time
With perimenopause starting up to a year before menopause, the symptoms and discomfort of menopause can affect women for more than a decade.
There isn’t sufficient medical research available
It’s only lately that active medical research is being conducted on menopause and related symptoms.
World Menopause Day dates