Did you know Menopause is called the Autumn Phase of Life? Similar to the season, menopause not only marks the end of the menstrual cycle but it also denotes a period of transformation in a woman’s life. It symbolizes change. Now, we know change can be very intimidating so it is completely natural for you to feel scared, confused and even the slightest bit relieved when menopause hits!
Did you know?
While the average menopause age in India is 46 years, one could start experiencing the symptoms of menopause as early as 40 years old! This happens due to a phenomenon called premature or early menopause which can be caused by a number of reasons like smoking, genetics, treatments like chemotherapy, surgical removal of the ovaries, etc.
Essentially, the key difference between menopause and early menopause is the age at which it occurs. Your body will try to give you many telltale signs, so be sure to listen carefully! Here are some early menopause symptoms to look out for:
Irregular and heavy periods
Your periods will be nothing short of a rollercoaster ride! Changes in your menstrual cycle will be one of the first symptoms that you will notice. It is due to the natural decline in the production of eggs by the ovaries that will make your periods more irregular and heavier than usual.
If you feel like you are in your own personal sauna on the hottest day of summer, chances are you may be experiencing hot flashes! An intense wave of warmth would spread across your upper body and may even cause your face and neck to feel flushed with heat. These flashes can lead to heavy sweating or red blotches and can last for anywhere between 30 seconds to 10 minutes.
As the reproductive years come to an end, changes begin to take place within the vagina. Your lady parts lose their elasticity and feel drier than usual. To combat this try using lubrication from time to time to keep friction at bay, especially during sexual intercourse.
Mood changes and irritability
Welcome to PMS 2.0! Early menopause brings about a lot of change in your body which could end up affecting your mental state and leave you feeling emotionally charged. As a result, you may experience extreme mood swings, irritability and mild forms of depression and anxiety.
Sleepless in Seattle….and everywhere else, too, because trouble getting a goodnight’s sleep is especially common when you enter the early menopause territory. You may develop insomnia or experience difficulty falling back asleep due to the intense night sweats!
What if you were told to carry a balloon full of water everywhere you go without knowing when it will pop? Women, during the early menopause stage, undergo something very similar! They may experience an increase in the frequency and urge of urination. It is also common to develop urinary incontinence or end up with bladder infections like UTIs.
With the hormonal changes taking place in your body, it is normal to have a low sex drive during these times. You may lose interest or develop new feelings towards sex. There is no right or wrong. Just have fun and remember to use protection!
So, here you have it! We hope this will help you understand and identify the various signs and symptoms of early menopause with ease. Go forth and use this opportunity to be the best version of yourself!