Perimenopause is the stage of transition as your body shifts to menopause. It does not mean that you are going through that change of life … yet. It means that your ovaries are producing less estrogen. It occurs to most women in their forties, but can begin in the thirties or even earlier.
Perimenopause lasts, on average, for four years. When you haven’t had a period for 12 months you are officially, biologically, in menopause. But during perimenopause, your body may feel different as a result of hormonal fluctuations. You might gain weight, have less energy, feel overwhelmed, or experience depression. The emotional swings can make it feel a bit like puberty.
Generally, estrogen levels are dropping during perimenopause, but they can, in fact, be far higher at times. It is the fluctuation of hormones that can cause symptoms such as menstrual migraines, breast tenderness, and trouble sleeping. You may also experience urinary urgency and lower sex drive. And while you are less fertile than you once were, you can still get pregnant during perimenopause.
You may be feeling out of sorts for many reasons and wondering what is happening to you (again, so much like puberty), and you may resist seeking medical intervention. Women have a tendency, often due to societal repression, to neglect their health and, especially, matters connected to their sexual lives and reproduction. Have you had a pelvic exam recently? Have you seen a gynecologist? You should have regular pap smears and talk to your doctor about these concerns. You may want to find a healthcare practitioner who is going to approach your symptoms from a holistic perspective.
You may find it beneficial to care for yourself differently now. Exercise more, drink less alcohol, sleep more, and get enough calcium. Achieve a healthy weight and maintain it. These are some of the things you can do to take your health by the reins and feel better as you experience this natural, normal, and healthy part of your aging journey. If you’re caring properly for yourself and still experiencing some negative effects of perimenopause, it’s worth looking into bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) to reestablish the proper balance of your hormones and bring your emotions and your aging processes back under control.
Evolved Medical treats women as whole human beings as they move through all the natural stages and cycles of life. We work with women to ameliorate symptoms of PMS and to feel better during perimenopause, menopause, and beyond. If you live or work in the San Francisco Bay area or Monterrey and are ready to find out about natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, call us for a free consultation: (888) 925-4568.