The medical definition for menopause is when a woman has not had her menstrual period for more than 12 months (1 year). The average age of menopause is around 51 in Malaysia. Menopause is strongly genetically linked, so you are likely to fall within a few years either way of the age your mother was at menopause.

However, it can happen some years earlier, depending on a woman’s lifestyle influence such as smoking, surgical removal of both ovaries, chemotherapy and pelvic radiotherapy. Factors that do not influence the age of menopause are the age of onset of menstruation, pregnancy, lactation and birth control methods.

There is no way to delay menopause. It can only be sped up, not slowed down, by external factors.

Menopause marks the end of a woman’s reproductive phase in life, when a woman’s ovaries no longer produce eggs and estrogen, a hormone that is associated with feminine characteristics such as breast development, vagina lubrication, pregnancy, increase collagen levels for smooth skin and others.

Natural menopause begins when a woman has her last period. This generally happens between the ages of 45-55, with variations in timing from woman to woman.

Surgical menopause happens to women who undergo surgery to remove both ovaries, which puts an immediate end to hormone reproduction and menstruation.