Smoking and genetics are two factors that can influence the timing of natural menopause. Smokers reach menopause about 2 years earlier. Many women report no physical changes during perimenopause except irregular menstrual periods that stop when menopause is reached. Other women experience symptoms of hot flashes, night sweats heavy sweating from hot flashes at night, often disturbing sleep , and thinning and drying of vaginal tissue that can make sex painful. How severe these body changes are varies from woman to woman, but for the most part these changes are perfectly natural and normal.
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Hot flashes are the most common menopause-related discomfort. They involve a sudden wave of heat or warmth often accompanied by sweating, reddening of the skin, and rapid heart beat. They usually last 1 to 5 minutes. Hot flashes frequently are followed by a cold chill. Night sweats are hot flashes at night that interfere with sleep. Treatments for night sweats and hot flashes include lifestyle changes, nonprescription remedies, hormone therapy with estrogen plus progestogen, or estrogen alone for women without a uterus , and nonhormonal prescription drugs.
The drop in estrogen around menopause leads to vaginal atrophy the drying and thinning of vaginal tissues in many women. It can cause a feeling of vaginal tightness during sex along with pain, burning, or soreness. Over-the-counter vaginal lubricants and moisturizers are effective in relieving pain during intercourse. For women with more severe vaginal atrophy and related pain, low-dose vaginal estrogen products may be needed. Ready for the next chapter?
There are also methods you can use to alleviate your symptoms at home. Regular exercise can help improve your mood, weight gain issues, and even ironically your hot flashes. Make it a plan to get some form of physical activity in your daily routine. Try doing a relaxing activity right before bed, such as gentle yoga or a warm bath. Avoid daytime naps, as this can interfere with your ability to sleep at night. Learn more about the perimenopause diet. Both perimenopause and menopause are transitional phases that indicate an end to your reproductive years.
There are certainly adjustments to be made, but remember that not all aspects are negative.
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With all of the treatments that are available, you can get through these stages more comfortably with a bit more freedom too. To help you get a handle on menopause, here are 11 things you should know about this transitional stage of life.
Menopause, Perimenopause and Postmenopause | Cleveland Clinic
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Premenopause, Perimenopause, and Menopause. Premenopause vs. Timelines for perimenopause and menopause. Symptoms of perimenopause and menopause. When to call a doctor. Treatments for perimenopause and menopause. The Perimenopause Diet: Must-Knows. Perimenopausal Depression.
A natural part of a woman's life that is beautiful but also filled with change
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