Menopause Specialist

Nancy Thornton, MD -  - Gynecologist

Nancy Thornton, MD

Gynecologist located in Palm Beach Gardens, FL

Menopause is a natural transition stage in a woman’s life, but it can have side effects that make it a difficult time for many women. If you’re going through the menopause, Nancy L. Thornton, MD, FACOG, offers a range of effective treatment options at her practice in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Whether you’re perimenopausal or postmenopausal, Dr. Thornton can help ease any of the unpleasant symptoms you’re experiencing. Call today or book an appointment online.

Menopause Q & A

What is menopause?

Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when her fertility comes to an end and she stops having periods. It’s a perfectly natural process that most women go through in their late forties or early fifties, with the average age for menopause in the United States being 51.

Menopause is confirmed when you’ve gone for at least 12 months without having a menstrual cycle. Prior to this, you’re said to be perimenopausal, which is when the side effects of a drop in female hormones start to affect you in a variety of ways.

What are the symptoms of menopause?

When you first become perimenopausal, fluctuations in the female reproductive hormones estrogen and progesterone trigger changes in your body. Many women feel few or only minor side effects throughout this process, but others may experience symptoms such as:

  • More frequent periods
  • Less frequent periods
  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Problems sleeping
  • Loss of libido
  • Mood swings
  • Depression
  • Weight gain
  • Loss of natural vaginal lubrication
  • Dry skin that’s more prone to spots
  • Dry hair and hair loss
  • Breast tenderness

You may feel any or all of these symptoms, and as a consequence suffer from fatigue and emotional problems.

What treatments are available for the symptoms of menopause?

As menopause is a natural biological process, you’re not ill, even though you might feel quite unwell at times. Dr. Thornton can give you advice on how to cope with any of the symptoms you’re experiencing and discusses your suitability for hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which is the most effective way to combat unpleasant menopausal symptoms.

Other treatments that may help include:

  • Vaginal estrogen medications to relieve dryness and painful intercourse
  • Low doses of SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) antidepressants
  • Anti-seizure medicines such as Gabapentin for hot flashes
  • Blood pressure medication such as Clonidine for hot flashes
  • Black Cohash, Evening primrose oil, Vitamin E, Relizen

Dr. Thornton may also recommend medications or supplements to help prevent osteoporosis, a condition that leads to bone loss and an increased likelihood of fractures. Your risk of developing osteoporosis increases after menopause due to the loss of estrogen and progesterone.

It’s also important to visit Dr. Thornton for regular checkups and preventive health care during and after menopause, including screening for breast cancer.

To find out more about the treatment options available for menopause, call Dr. Nancy L. Thornton’s practice today or book an appointment online.