menopause

The Many Signs of Pre-Menopause

Pre-menopause is also known as peri-menopause, and symptoms can begin to surface in a woman years before menopause actually occurs. Actual menopause is defined as the time when a woman has gone for twelve months without a menstrual cycle. Before the event actually occurs, many changes in a woman’s body begin to happen and the results are felt much earlier than some women would expect. If you are between the ages of 45 and 55, and you are beginning to experience symptoms that seem to be menopausal in nature, it is a good idea to see your doctor so that he can confirm your suspicions. Keep in mind that there can be other causes of symptoms that appear to be the result of pre-menopause, so it is very important to check with your doctor as to the cause of your symptoms.

Pre-Menopause Symptoms

One of the first pre-menopause symptoms that many women notice is an irregularity of the menstrual cycle. This can mean almost anything; from longer to shorter cycles, heavier to lighter flows, and longer or shorter periods. The one common factor that most women complain of as a pre-menopause symptom is the fact that the menstrual cycle becomes unpredictable at best. Another symptom that the “change” is coming is hot flashes that can be accompanied by night sweats. Hot flashes can be described as a warm sensation in the middle of the body that spreads to the rest of the body within a few seconds or minutes. Night sweats awaken many women to wet pillows and sheets, and are often followed by a bout of chills.

Many women that are in the throes of pre-menopause will also complain of vaginal dryness and hair loss. Some will also find more hair growth on the face, which is due to the hormonal fluctuations of this stage of life. It is also not uncommon to experience emotional symptoms such as mood swings, irritability and depression. Some doctors will attribute these symptoms to the lack of sleep that many pre-menopausal women have to grapple with as much as the hormone changes. Mental pre-menopause symptoms can include forgetfulness, confusion and an inability to concentrate. Again, some of these symptoms can probably be attributed to the stress and sleep deprivation that this time of life can sometimes cause.

Treating Pre-Menopause Symptoms

The good news for pre-menopausal women is that many of the symptoms of pre-menopause can be treated so that you can either experience some relief from the symptoms, or cessation altogether. If you think that you are in the beginning stages of pre-menopause, it is important to talk to your doctor about your symptoms so that he can advise you as to the best way to handle them.

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