What is Perimenopause?
It’s the change women go through, as hormone levels start to decline. This can take up to two years. During this time, many patients might start developing symptoms, and periods can become irregular until they completely stop altogether. Eventually, the declining hormone levels will result in the cessation of menses, which is known as menopause.
When will Perimenopause start?
The average age in the US for menopause is 51, but a variety of factors can affect the age that it starts. Perimenopause typically starts in the 40s.
How will I know I am experiencing Perimenopause?
The spectrum of symptoms and how patients do during the transition can be anywhere from unnoticeable, to severe. Symptoms may include hot flashes, difficulty sleeping, mood changes, fatigue and other physical symptoms.
Sometimes these symptoms can mimic other medical conditions, including thyroid disorders, so it is important to keep that in mind.
Some of these changes can affect women’s health even if there are no symptoms present. As women go through menopause, there is an increased risk of heart disease and osteoporosis.
What can I do to manage the symptoms of Perimenopause?
Traditionally, if patients were complaining of menopausal symptoms we would prescribe hormone therapy, including estrogen and progesterone therapy. Although very commonly used today, these therapies can have side effects and adverse reactions.
It is important to consider that today, more than ever, there are many therapy options for menopausal symptoms. Something as simple as increasing natural soy intake can make a difference.
If you are experiencing the symptoms of Perimenopause, speak to your healthcare provider today about available therapies and treatment.