“The change” is something many women hear about as they get older. It sounds like some weird sickness that takes over women.
You get all kinds of stories and weird advice. However, what many people don’t know is what happens before the change.
Many women go through perimenopause which comes before full menopause.
Here are six signs of perimenopause that women may see.
1. Irregular Periods
One of the first signs of perimenopause comes with irregular periods.
You may have longer times between cycles or shorter times. A regular change of seven days or more would indicate early perimenopause.
A change of sixty days or more means you are likely in late perimenopause
2. Hot Flashes
Many women have hot flashes during perimenopause. The intensity and length vary among women.
Many women have hot flashes while sleeping and have night sweats. These symptoms of perimenopause can be intense or light for each woman.
3. Quick Mood Changes
Some women’s symptoms include mood swings that show up as irritability or depression. The lack of sleep from hot flashes could add to this.
These changes could be gradual or brought on quickly as women move in the stages of perimenopause.
To know for sure you should see your doctor and have him administer a perimenopause test. Most doctors will test your hormone levels over time to see if they are increasing or decreasing.
The estrogen levels going up and down are the signs of perimenopause.
4. Bladder and Vaginal Problems
Some women’s signs of perimenopause include getting more bladder or urinary tract infections. Other women will experience vaginal dryness and loss of elasticity. This could make intercourse very painful.
The average age of perimenopause starts in the 40’s for most women. However, some women can start in their 30’s.
Seeing your doctor regularly can help you notice changes when they happen.
5. Bone Loss and Cholesterol Changes
Lower estrogen levels can cause bone loss to happen. This opens you up to the risk of osteoporosis.
When your estrogen levels decrease you could see an increase in LDL cholesterol. This is the “bad” cholesterol.
At the same time HDL cholesterol, the good cholesterol could decrease in women as their estrogen lowers.
To help with many of these issues some women are finding hormone therapy effective in helping them manage their estrogen.
There are two types of hormone therapy: synthetic hormones and bioidentical hormones. Ask your doctor about these therapies and read about the difference between the two.
6. Lower Sex Drive
Some women find their sex drive decreasing during perimenopause. Their sexual arousal and desire may be harder to engage.
Talking through these issues with your partner and your doctor could bring some solutions that help to manage these decreases.
Pay Attention to Signs of Perimenopause
Women shouldn’t live in fear of “the change”. Knowing the signs of perimenopause and having a good relationship with your doctor will help you be prepared.
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