Before you experience menopause, your body will alert you to its onset with the help of symptoms that indicate the beginning of such a time in your life.Before you experience menopause, your body will alert you to its onset with the help of symptoms that indicate the beginning of such a time in your life. This is what is called perimenopause, and this usually occurs between 4 to 8 years before menopause truly happens. Sometimes called menopausal transition, this can start as early as your late 30s, although most go through this stage in their 40s.
What happens during this pre-menopausal stage? You start to experience some of the symptoms of menopause itself, which may include sleeplessness, hot flashes, and vaginal dryness. You may also experience some of these other indicators as well:
- Irregular menstruation – a woman’s ovulations becomes rather erratic and unpredictable at this stage, with some periods coming in earlier than expected and others coming in later than expected. You may also experience a marked change in your flow, which may seem heavier or lighter than you are used to. You may also find yourself having periods with a 60 day lull in between, and this is also a symptom of perimenopause.
- Becoming moody and irritable – mood swings are also indicative of the beginnings of menopause, with some even experiencing depression and being easy to anger. This is usually because of the other symptoms that make a person cranky, like the sleeplessness, which may also be due to the uncomfortable hot flashes that a woman goes through.
- Ability to conceive declines – when you enter perimenopause, ovulation is no longer as regular as clockwork, and as such, this makes it more difficult to have a baby. You can still get pregnant since you are still ovulating, but the chances are not as high as when you were younger and ovulating regularly.
- Bone mass problems emerge – if you have not been ingesting calcium regularly before this occurs, you may find yourself heading for a problem called osteoporosis. This is because the drop in your estrogen levels will bring about bone loss.
- Sex drive changes – as with menopause, those going through perimenopause may either find themselves wanting more or wanting less sex, and this is due to the changes in their libido. Since sex drive is also tied in with hormones, it is then but natural that you will find this changing when your estrogen and progesterone start taking a dive.
How do you reduce the symptoms that emerge when perimenopause comes knocking on your door? You can consult with your doctor to discuss treatments that may be ideal for you. One of the more popular treatments is hormone replacement therapy, and this can come in a variety of forms. Depending on your medical history and on your family’s medical background, you could find yourself getting relief from the many symptoms of perimenopause with a low dose of estrogen. You will also be given progesterone when this happens, since a balance between these two needs to be maintained to prevent uterine cancer. You will also be advised to live a healthier lifestyle to make you feel better.