Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when she naturally stops having menstrual periods. Menopause marks the end of the reproductive years. The average age of menopause for women in the United States is 51 years.
Most women enter a transitional phase in the years leading up to menopause called perimenopause. Perimenopause is a time of gradual change in the levels of estrogen, a hormone that helps control the menstrual cycle. Changing estrogen levels can bring on symptoms such as hot flashes and sleep changes. To manage these symptoms, some women may choose to take hormone therapy.