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How long does menopause last?

Generally, menopause starts between the ages of 45 and 55 with symptoms lasting for between 4-7 years. However, for some women, symptoms can last for up to 14 years or more. The types and severity of menopausal symptoms may differ greatly between women.

How long does menopause last?

In addition to treatments such as hormone replacement therapy (HRT), lifestyle factors including diet, exercise and managing weight can have a beneficial impact on menopause symptoms.

For this reason, it is important that women have a good understanding of the menopause, including both the symptoms and the longer term impact of estrogen decline post menopause.

Once women have this information and access to experts with menopausal expertise, they can make informed decisions about how to optimise this period in their life.

The stages of menopause

To understand why menopause is important, it’s helpful to understand the different stages:


The period leading up to the menopause (when periods stop), is called the perimenopause. During this time, estrogen production starts to decline, and many women will begin to experience symptoms. Typically, perimenopause lasts between 1 to 2 years until periods finally stop; however, for many women it may last for much longer. Symptoms during this time, include hot flushes, sweats, aches and pains, mood changes and loss of libido, among many others. We’ll be discussing menopause symptoms in another article..


Menopause is the point when 12 months have passed since the last period. Usually, this happens between the ages of 45 and 55. At this stage, the ovaries have stopped releasing eggs and producing estrogen. In the UK, the average age of menopause is 51 and the average duration of menopause symptoms is four to seven years.  


Post-menopause refers to the years after menopause; i.e. after the last period. For most women during this time, symptoms of menopause will gradually lessen and, eventually, stop altogether. However, this is not always the case; some women may find that their symptoms continue for longer than the 4-7 years that are the average for most.

The typical symptoms of menopause are a mixture of physical and psychological.

Long-term health implications of menopause

How long does menopause last?

Although menopause symptoms can last up to 14 years, and sometimes longer, for most women, symptoms do come to an end. However, even after symptoms end, menopause also has long-term health implications because of the consequences of estrogen loss. It is important that women understand the impact of estrogen decline as they approach menopause so they can make appropriate treatment and/or lifestyle choices to minimise this.

Estrogen has a vital role in the functioning of almost all bodily systems, with estrogen receptors present on almost all cells, not just the reproductive and genital organs. Estrogen receptors are present in the brain, cardiovascular system, bones, joints, and skin, which is one of the reasons menopausal women experience such a diverse range of symptoms when estrogen production declines.

After menopause, the risk of certain medical conditions increases, including:

  • Heart disease 
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Osteoporosis (bone thinning)
  • Muscle loss and joint problems
  • Cataracts
  • Weight gain
  • Urinary incontinence 
  • Periodontal (gum) disease
  • Problems with sexual function
  • Vulvovaginal atrophy (thinning of the vaginal walls)

Prior to menopause, women have lower rates of cardiovascular disease than men. Women are also protected from conditions such as osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease. But this changes after menopause as estrogen levels decline, and conditions such as cardiovascular disease, for example, begin to occur as, or more, frequently in women than in men.

Common menopausal symptoms

Below is a list of symptoms commonly experienced during the menopause transition:

  • Weight gain
  • Fatigue
  • Hot flushes and night sweats
  • Brain fog
  • Anxiety
  • Hair thinning or loss
  • Insomnia
  • Irregular bleeding
  • Acne


How long each symptom lasts, and whether a woman experiences them, will vary. Thankfully, there is treatment available to manage and minimise menopausal symptoms. Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), has been shown to improve menopause symptoms and reduce the risk of some of the long-term effects of estrogen decline such as cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. HRT works by replacing the estrogen no longer being produced by the ovaries.

Although clinical studies show that estrogen, when given as HRT to women under the age of 60 or within 10 years of menopause onset reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis, addressing lifestyle is also important, including attention to diet, weight and exercise, as well as mental health.

In the next section, we go into each of the most common symptoms of menopause and how long they can last, detailing treatments available as well.

Menopause Support

Specialist support for menopause

While many women dread going through menopause, this doesn’t need to be the case if you have a good understanding of what’s happening and how you can make health and lifestyle choices optimise your quality of life. Menopause is a transitional period that can be one of great opportunity.

At NewWoman Health, we are committed to educating, advising, treating, and supporting women in the period leading up to, and beyond menopause. Our range of lifestyle and medical interventions have been expertly created to improve the quality, and potential longevity, of women’s lives by managing and minimising menopause symptoms and reducing its impact on long term health. 

If you’re worried about menopause symptoms and want professional, dedicated help, book a consultation with one of our team today.

Our specialist support includes:

  • Personalised medical consultations
  • Personalised one-to-one fitness and well-being advice
  • Work and life coaching
  • Psychosexual counselling
  • Skin health advice
  • One-to-one nutritional advice
  • Weight management support
  • Women’s (pelvic) health physiotherapy

Optimise your future with a pragmatic, tailored plan from our doctors and experts.

Book your menopause consultation today

Take the next step to taking control of your future and book a consultation with our specialist team today. Our doctors and experts will help you with a pragmatic, personalised plan to optimise your life and make your menopause transition a period of opportunity. 

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You are not alone. As a local example, in Manchester over 46% of council employees are female and over 40 years old. In a CIPD survey (2019) over 30% of women said they were unable to work because of menopausal symptoms.

Only 25% said they could tell their manager the real reason for their absence. The Council account for nearly 7% of all employment in Manchester. They implemented a new Menopause policy in March 2022. CIPD survey | Manchester Council Menopause Policy | CIPD Manchester

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Our team of menopause specialists have extensive experience treating and supporting women impacted by the peri-menopause and menopause. Their advice and expertise will support you to make informed decisions for your menopause and overall quality of life and well-being. Simply select your preferred menopause specialist by going to our menopause specialists page and arrange a consultation today.