The first symptoms of perimenopause typically begin as a woman enters her mid-40s. As her body begins to wind down reproductive functions, fluctuating hormone levels generate a range of menopause symptoms. Continue reading about the first symptoms of menopause, how to identify them, and what you can do to keep them at bay and prevent them from tainting your days.
Most Common First Symptoms of Menopause
Once menopause symptoms begin, they can last for part of or the whole menopause transition; they can even extend into postmenopause. A few of the most typical initial symptoms of menopause are:
Irregular periods. Irregular periods are usually one of the very first symptoms of menopause for many women. They are characterized by menstrual cycles that are absent, shorter, longer, with more or less bleeding, etc.
Hot flashes. Up to 80 percent of middle-aged women experience hot flashes. They are sensations of extreme heat in the upper body and are frequently accompanied by a rapid heartbeat, heavy sweating, and flushing in the chest, neck, and face.
Night sweats. Night sweats are nocturnal hot flashes that often disrupt a woman's sleep. They are often associated with sudden and intense heat and perspiration that can lead to bed sheets being soaked, and they can be followed by chills immediately afterwards.
Loss of libido. Loss of libido can be a difficult symptom for a woman to handle as it can be hard to understand why her sex drive has changed if her emotions for her partner have still remained the same. This can impact how she sees herself and her relationship.
Other common symptoms of menopause include:
Identifying the First Symptoms of Menopause
Many women experience symptoms and wonder whether they are going through menopause. If you believe that you may be experiencing the early signs and symptoms of perimenopause, then ask yourself the following questions:
Am I in the age range of women who typically go through menopause? (The average age for a woman's last period is 51. Women usually experience symptoms in the 2 to 10 years leading up to this time.)
How old were my mother and other female relatives when they went through menopause, and how does this compare to my age now?
Have my periods changed due to stress or any other factor not connected to menopause?
What else could be causing my symptoms?
Answering these questions will help you to work out whether or not what you're experiencing are the first symptoms of perimenopause or something related to another condition.
Read on for further information about the multitude of natural and effective treatments for menopause symptoms there are widely available for women these days.
- Harvard Health Publishing. (2018). Menopause-related hot flashes and night sweats can last for years. Retrieved June 21, 2019, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/menopause-related-hot-flashes-night-sweats-can-last-years-201502237745
- National Institutes on Aging. (2017). What are the Signs and Symptoms of Menopause? Retrieved June 21, 2019, from https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/what-are-signs-and-symptoms-menopause
- Office on Women's Health. (2019). Menopause basics. Retrieved June 21, 2019, from https://www.womenshealth.gov/menopause/menopause-basics