Perimenopause is the period when your body prepares to make a natural transition into the end of your reproductive years. Most women report progressing towards menopause around their 40s. However, it is not uncommon to get into perimenopause as early as your 30s. During perimenopause, your body will produce less estrogen and progesterone hormones, meaning you will naturally experience a couple of changes. Let’s look into common signs that you are in perimenopause.
A common sign of perimenopause is a sudden warmth that lasts five to ten minutes, also known as a hot flash. Some women get flushed and are drenched in sweat until the feeling passes. Night sweats are hot flashes that happen at night or early in the morning and cause you to wake up drenched in sweat. You could prevent hot flashes by avoiding triggers such as spicy foods, hot drinks, and environments with warm temperatures. If you sweat a lot at night, it would be best to dress in light cotton pajamas that absorb the sweat and keep you from getting too warm.
Hormonal imbalance and changes in your body could prevent you from catching some Zs. Night sweats could also make you uncomfortable and unable to stay asleep longer. After all, nobody likes to wake up in a pool of their own sweat. We recommend you establish a regular nighttime routine where you allow yourself to fall asleep. It would also be wise to keep your phone and electronics away an hour before bedtime. High-quality sleep is not only good for your overall health, but it will also put you in a good mood.
Women experiencing perimenopause often have difficulty remembering simple things like where they placed their keys or when they are due for their next appointment. This mind fog might be due to insufficient sleep, hormonal imbalance, and mood swings. Fortunately, your forgetfulness will get better after menopause. You could keep a journal to remind you of important events or have a designated spot for your keys and small items.
During perimenopause, ovulation becomes increasingly unpredictable. If you previously had regular periods, you may notice they are becoming irregular. It is common for you to skip a period or two as your body transitions into menopause. The length of your menstruation could also vary. If you used to menstruate for five days, you might notice your period lasts seven days or more. Well, female hormone testing could help determine whether your irregular period is due to perimenopause or hormonal imbalance. However, you will know that you are at the end of perimenopause when you have gone sixty days without a period.
Your hormones play a vital role in controlling your mood. It is not uncommon for you to experience highs and lows in your mood due to hormonal imbalance during perimenopause. Your mood could get worse if you haven’t been getting enough sleep. Research reveals that women who experienced PMS before perimenopause could have worse mood swings. The best solution would be to indulge in enjoyable activities and avoid situations that could ruin your mood.
Oestrogen is responsible for the secretion of fluids that keep your vaginal tissues moist and supple. The decreased estrogen levels can make your vagina feel drier than usual, making sex uncomfortable or painful. We recommend you use a water-based lubricant to reduce friction during intimacy. It would also be best to have regular sex to retain the moisture in your vagina.
Loss of bone mass
The drop in estrogen levels during perimenopause could cause you to lose bone quicker than you can replace it. The loss of bone mass could make your bones fragile and more likely to fracture or break after a fall. You are also at a greater risk of developing osteoporosis. We suggest you go to a doctor and ask them to perform a special X-ray to check your bone density.
A drop in the progesterone levels could cause the lining of the uterus to become thicker. Therefore, when it comes time to shed this lining, you might notice your periods are heavier than usual. A thicker uterine wall could also worsen other issues such as fibroids.
Though menopause is inevitable and a typical phase in any woman’s life as they age. That said, certain risk factors could cause you to reach perimenopause faster. Smoking, cancer treatment, a hysterectomy, and a family history of early menopause are common reasons you would start menopause early.