The process of menopause does not occur overnight, but rather is a gradual process. This so-called perimenopausal transition period is a different experience for each woman.
The average age of menopause is 51 years old, but menopause may occur as early as the 30s or as late as the 60s. There is no reliable lab test to predict when a woman will experience menopause.
Symptoms of perimenopause:
Changes in Your Period
They may be light or very heavy, long or short. You may skip some altogether. If you go more than 60 days between periods, you may be near the end of perimenopause. Low-dose birth control pills can keep you more regular and may help with other symptoms too.
You suddenly get flushed and sweat for 5 to 10 minutes. Some women get slightly warm while others are drenched in sweat. When they wake you in the wee hours of the morning, they’re called night sweats. Deep-breathing exercises may help. You also can try to avoid triggers — warm temperatures, hot drinks, spicy food. You can try black cohash or add soy to your diet, as a natural source of estrogen. Talk to your doctor about medications for moderate-severe symptoms.
Because you have less estrogen, your tissue may become thinner and drier. This can cause itching, soreness, and pain during sex — all of which can make you less frisky. Regular sex can help keep that tissue toned and healthy. Talk to your doctor about other medication options.
Worsening of premenstrual syndrome
Lower sex drive
Urine leakage when coughing or sneezing
Consult your doctor if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, since perimenopause might not be the cause: