Note: this is Part 2 in a series that will bust some common myths about menopause and midlife hormone changes. To read Part 1, click here.
I hear this ALL the time: “My periods are super weird and I’m hot at night and I just don’t feel like myself, but my doctor said I’m too young for menopause.”
Here’s the thing: there’s menopause, and then there’s PERIMENOPAUSE. Menopause is when your period goes away and stays gone for 12 consecutive months. Average age for that to happen? 51 years old.
Perimenopause is the whole phase BEFORE that, when hormones begin to shift, and that can last for . . . up to 10 years. Yeah. (I’m sorry.)
So doctors are right that it would be unusual for a person in their late 30s or early 40s to go through actual menopause. But could all those new symptoms be part of perimenopause? TOTALLY. Irregular periods, periods that are much heavier or more painful than usual, weight gain, irritability, weepiness, brain fog, hot flashes, insomnia, fatigue: all are possible.
If you feel like something is changing in your body, it probably is. You know yourself better than anyone else, and I want you to NEVER let anyone tell you that what you feel is imaginary or insignificant.
The good news is that there are lots of options for managing the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause: diet, exercise, acupuncture, botanical medicine, supplements, stress management, and hormone replacement can all be super helpful. So: trust yourself, and don’t suffer.
I offer support for women during perimenopause and menopause in my Austin, Texas clinic as well as through online health consultations. To book a free discovery call and see if it’s a good fit, click here.