7 Popular Menopause Myths Everyone Seems to Believe

Can You Identify the Myths?

Menopause starts the moment you turn 50. Your periods will instantly stop, and you’ll gain weight. Oh, and you can only reverse the effects using hormonal medications.

Hot flashes? They’re only a mere side effect that’ll stop shortly after. But hey, the good news is, you won’t get pregnant because women on menopause stop producing eggs altogether.

Did I forget something?

No, I think I covered all the menopause myths you hear all the time from people who never went through it.

Spoiler alert: menopause won’t cause weight gain; fast food and sugar will.

Convinced? Then read this article for the most popular menopause myths that need to stop today!

Myth #1: Menopause Starts the Moment You Turn 50

No, there isn’t a magical alert that wakes menopause up when you turn 50. Janet Jackson had a baby when she was 50, and Helen Morris had a perfectly healthy kid when she was 52. It’s true; the average menopause age is around the 50s, but that doesn’t mean anything. 

Each woman is different, and there’s no deadline for menopause. It hugely depends on genetics, so you can predict when you’ll get menopause according to when your mother or sister got it. 

It may also depend on your health. Some women with autoimmune diseases get their menopause earlier than average. Smokers are also more prone to early menopause.

Other than that, there isn’t any way to know when it’ll start.

Some silly theories say that menopause will hit early when you get your period young, but that’s simply untrue. It doesn’t matter whether you started your period at 11 or 14 years old, it doesn’t have the tiniest effect on menopause.

Myth #2: Your Brain Will Get Foggy 

No, menopause isn’t responsible for you misplacing your keys or forgetting the name of your favorite hairdresser. Brain fog is a pretty normal occurrence that comes with aging. It can also be a result of stress, anxiety, depression, or even thyroid dysfunction.

You start noticing these details when you’re older than 50, and that’s also likely when menopause starts. So, associating them is a bit logical, but it’s wrong.

When you start noticing these instances more than usual, you can always talk to a doctor if you’re concerned.

brain fog menopause

Menopause Myth #3: You’ll Get Fat

It’s true that menopause affects the metabolism, but that’s not equal to ‘getting fat.’ 

Have you seen Jane Fonda? That’s not someone who got fat after menopause.

The thing is, menopause shifts your hormones, resulting in a slower metabolism. If you manage to reduce your daily intake by 200 calories, you won’t gain an ounce. Plus, you can always opt for hormone therapy if you want to make sure you don’t develop belly fat.

Not to mention, weight can always be controlled by some dietary changes and exercise.

Menopause Myth #4: Hot Flashes Will Stop After a Short While

Well, I’m sorry for debunking this myth, but hot flashes last for longer than you’d want them to. They can take up to ten years, varying in intensity. Some women also have them for shorter periods; it depends on your body.

Contrary to common belief, hot flashes don’t go away after your period stops, but their intensity significantly decreases.

In the first two or three years of menopause, the hot flashes will be harder. They’ll get easier later on, and you can ease their symptoms by avoiding or reducing your consumption of spicy foods, tobacco, alcohol, and caffeine.

menopause hot flash

Menopause Myth #5: You Can Easily Tell Menopause Is Starting

Again, there’s no magical alert that’ll tell you menopause is starting. As a matter of fact, it’s pretty hard to tell because perimenopause sometimes lasts for years. It’s even harder for women who had hysterectomies to tell their menopause is starting.

If you want to make sure, you can run some tests to find out. Most doctors check the level of Follicle Stimulating Hormone because it increases when the ovaries stop working.

If you don’t want to run tests, you can track your period. If it stops for a few months, or your periods are spaced out overall, menopause is likely starting.

Periods are also shorter during menopause, so that’s one way to tell. Some women get heavy bleeding, but it’s always better to report to the doctor in all cases.

Menopause Myth #6: You’ll Never Get Pregnant During Menopause

Sorry to tell you that, but until menopause officially ends, there’s still a chance of pregnancy. When your period hasn’t stopped yet, it means your ovaries are still functioning, and so you may get pregnant upon sexual intercourse.

As a rule of thumb, your period needs to stop for a full year for menopause to officially end. If it comes even after stopping for 10 or 11 months, it means you’re still ovulating, and the menopause is yet to end.

Menopause Myth #7: Your Period Will Instantly Stop

No, you won’t wake up someday to find your periods gone. As much as I’d have liked it to be like that, it’s not. Periods take their time to stop. Firstly, they space out, coming every two or three months. Then, they either keep coming after 8–9 months of stopping or they stop altogether.

You’ll notice a lot of changes in your period before it decides to stop. The flow may be heavier or lighter, according to how your body works. And, the period may be shorter or longer, also according to your body.

Only a few rare women will stop menstruation suddenly. Usually, it takes some skipped periods first to know.

To Wrap Up

Menopauses are a hassle to deal with; I’ll give you that. But that doesn’t mean we should believe anything about it. 

Believe me; I’d have loved it if my period stopped instantly or if the hot flashes ended shortly after they started, but that’s not the case. 

Believing these menopause myths won’t do you any good. It’s better to have a fully inclusive view to know what to expect during this phase.