Why Do Women Experience Menopause?
Menopause, also known as ‘The Change’, is something that all women will face as they age. Usually sometime after 45, periods will begin to become sporadic and a wide range of different side effects and symptoms will occur including things like mood swings, insomnia, hot flashes, headaches, and more. Most women have at least a passing understanding of menopause and what to expect as it occurs, but it’s worth learning a little more about just why it’s only a female problem and why men won’t experience it as they age.
It all comes down to the reproductive organs of men and women. Men are capable of producing sperm until the day they day. Their testicles continue sperm production indefinitely. However, a woman’s ovaries have a finite amount of eggs which they will create and release into the body. Once the final eggs have been released from the ovaries, fertility ends and the woman has reached menopause. Periods will cease, and the woman will continue with her days without dealing with the hassles of a period.
Along with an end to egg production, the ovaries also reduce production of hormones like estrogen and progesterone. These hormones have a large impact on virtually every aspect of a woman’s body and mind, and as the hormone levels dip and become unbalanced the different symptoms of menopause will begin to occur.
Since men don’t experience this shut down of their reproductive capabilities or experience a sudden swing in hormone levels, they don’t experience menopause. Of course, hormone deficiencies may occur in some men but they occur as a separate issue, not as some type of problem directly related to the end of fertility.
However, it’s important to note that men who are in relationships with women will indeed experience menopause to some degree. Mood swings, irritability, and a huge reduction in sexual desire are all symptoms a woman may experience as menopause hits. And these symptoms can certainly have an impact on the man who is with the woman going through them. While he won’t experience the hot flashes or the mood changes personally, he’ll likely feel their influence in other ways. As a result, it’s important for couples to discuss menopause and what is occurring during it openly so that feelings aren’t hurt and so that they can support one another during this difficult period of time.
Men may not directly experience menopause – their bodies are simply incapable of triggering “The Change” – but in many cases they’ll still go through challenging times as their loved one experiences menopause.