What is “postmenopause”? How do you know WHEN MENOPAUSE HAS BECOME POSTMENOPAUSE?

Postmenopause is defined as occurring when ovarian function has ceased and continuing until old age. Menopause is thought to be over when its symptoms have abated. The years that follow are considered to be the postmenopausal years. Because each woman’s experience of menopause is unique, I know of no clear lines of demarcation to mark the end of menopause and the beginning of the postmenopause.

Those years that follow menopause can be the very best years of your life. As I write these words, I am reminded of several lines I read years ago in the Afterword of Passages by Gail Sheehy:

The greatest surprise of all was to find that in every group studied, whether men or women, the most satisfying stages in their lives were the later ones. Simply, older is better.

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