Although perimenopause is clearly the most noticeable stage of the menopause process, most women fail to realize what perimenopause really is.
Perimenopause, as its own name suggest, is the time in women’s lives near menopause. Symptoms such as hot flashes and mood swings appear, causing women to feel uncertain about their own bodies, as they go toward the end of their reproductive lives.
Perimenopause, the second menopausal stage, is not something to be dreaded. Armed with sufficient and accurate information, the storm of perimenopause can be weathered with grace and relative ease.
What is Perimenopause?
Perimenopause can be a somewhat uncomfortable and even frightening time for women who are unprepared for the changes that accompany it. It is the second stage of the menopause process, and it can be recognized as the stage that signals the start of the end of the reproductive years.
Although all women are different, they usually enter perimenopause in their late thirties or early forties. During this time, the female body prepares for the total cessation of reproductive functions, causing myriad changes and feelings.
Causes of Perimenopause
At the most fundamental level, perimenopause is caused by a sudden increase in hormone fluctuations.
There are two major reasons for these to happen:
- Hormonal Causes: They result in the visible signs and symptoms of perimenopause. This involves the natural hormonal fluctuations that accompany aging and eventually lead to an end of the reproductive years.
- External Causes: These involve things like stress and medical procedures that can trigger hormone changes.
Probably the most recognizable feature of perimenopause, symptoms is the way women’s bodies respond to the erratic hormonal changes taking place. Perimenopause symptoms often begin at a mild level of intensity and may come and go unpredictably for months or even years. Some of the most common perimenopause symptoms are:
- Low libido
- Weight gain
- Hot flushes
- Night sweats
- Mood swings
- Vaginal dryness
Although the symptoms mentioned above are the most common, there is a whole array of perimenopause symptoms.
Many women might discover that their perimenopause symptoms are significantly disrupting their lives. These women might readily seek out treatments for perimenopause.
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