Babe, let's get the facts straight. What exactly is peri-menopause and why the hell does noone talk about it?
You’ve been experiencing a number of uncomfortable symptoms and you can’t help but wonder if you’ve hit menopause. Everything from heavy sweating to inconsistent menstruation periods, aging doesn't seem very favorable.
Are you experiencing perimenopausal symptoms or have you already hit menopause?
Menopause describes the finite moment, where you have gone 12 months without a period.
Before reaching menopause, we often have to go through a transitional period known as perimenopause. Maybe you've heard the term thrown around in the medical world or by a few of your friends. So what does it mean?
According to Holly Ernst, PA-C, perimenopause is the time period, usually over a span of a couple of years, before hitting menopause. It is often characterized by inconsistent and/or heavy menstrual periods. The inconsistency is attributed to the fact that the ovaries start producing less estrogen (Huizen, 2018).
Also known as the menopausal transition, perimenopause is hence, a transitional period before a woman officially enters into menopause. Most women enter this period as early as 30 years, while others enter this period at the age of 40 or even 50 (Perimenopause: Rocky road to menopause, 2018).
The period in which this transitional period lasts also varies from one woman to another. For some, the transition will take at least three or four years. For others, however, the period may last a decade or only a few months (Perimenopause).
If you suspect that you’re in the natural transitional stage of perimenopause, then you ought to acquaint yourself with the symptoms.
Typical Signs and Symptoms of Perimenopause you should know
Knowing the signs and symptoms of perimenopause will help identify whether you’re in the natural transitioning stage to menopause. They include (Perimenopause, 2016):
• Inconsistent periods
• Mood swings
• Hot flashes
• Sleeping irregularities
• Lower interest in sex
• Tiredness and increased exhaustion
• Vaginal dryness
• Bladder problems
• Increased risk of developing osteoporosis
• Increased levels of cholesterol
• Breast tenderness
• Night Sweats
• Heavy menstruation
• Sexual discomfort: This is largely due to the low estrogen levels, which then leads to vaginal dryness.
Perimenopause. (2016, October 21). Retrieved April 9, 2019, from Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/perimenopause/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20354671
Perimenopause. (2016, October 21). Retrieved April 9, 2019, from Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/perimenopause/symptoms-causes/syc-20354666
Menopause. (2017, August 7). Retrieved April 9, 2019, from Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menopause/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20353401
Perimenopause: Rocky road to menopause. (2018, August 24). Retrieved April 9, 2019, from Harvard Health publishing: https://www.health.harvard.edu/womens-health/perimenopause-rocky-road-to-menopause
Huizen, J. (2018, June 5). Why does perimenopause cause ovary pain? Retrieved April 9, 2019, from Medical News Today: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322040.php
Perimenopause. (n.d.). Retrieved April 9, 2019, from WebMD: https://www.webmd.com/menopause/guide/guide-perimenopause#1