Symptoms of Early Menopause

by Nathalie Fiset,M.D. - Date: 2006-11-28 - Word Count: 597 Share This!

Forewarned is forearmed.

This is one of life's adages that women should live by especially when dealing with menopause.

Menopause is a period that all women will go through eventually. It is inevitable. It happens when the ovaries run out of eggs and when levels of secretion of female hormones estrogen, progesterone and androgen go down. Menopause marks the end of a woman's child-bearing days. This often occurs in their mid-50s. Usually, women who began their menstrual period early will also menopause early.

In addition to the end of one's fertile days, menopause also brings several changes in the body. Because of the decreased levels of the female hormones, women will experience a lot of changes. In fact, these changes can actually be observed even before the actual menopause period.

Delayed again!

One of the earliest signs and symptoms of Menopause is menstrual irregularities. The effect may be varied depending on the person. There are some who will have decreased flow while others will skip their periods in some months. So don't be surprised if you suddenly miss your monthly flow for four consecutive months.

This is quite ordinary when menopause is about to happen. This is due to the decreasing secretions of progesterone. Of course, you also have to make sure that you are not pregnant because that may be the case.

Is it warm in here?

Women who are nearing their menopausal days may also find themselves perspiring even when the temperature is already way low. Some will even start bringing battery-operated fans because they just can't stand the heat even when inside an air-conditioned office room. What they are experiencing are hot flashes.

Hot flashes are characterized feelings of warmth and sweating even when it is actually cold brought on by the abrupt change in body temperature. About a quarter of women go through this phenomena, making it the most common indicator of menopause .

Can't sleep

As if hot flashes and irregular monthly flow is not enough, women may also find it hard to sleep without any reason. Some also experience night sweats.

Unpredictable as the weather

Mood swings is perhaps one of the most popular symptoms of those nearing menopause. Women will be more susceptible to depression and feelings of lowliness and loneliness. They also get easily irritated more than usual and may suffer from see-saw of emotions. Happy-sad-happy-sad.

It's in the vagina

When levels of estrogen drops, the lubrication and elasticity of the vaginal tissues may suffer. This makes intercourse more painful than before. This is the reason why some people say that sex drive goes on the a nosedive before and during menopause. Those nearing menopause are also more susceptible to urinary infections as well as vaginal problems. Urinary incontinence is also not uncommon.

Bone problems

Declining levels of the female hormone estrogen may result in bone problems especially when there is not enough calcium deposits in the body. Women will find it harder to do some work.

They will also lose some of their flexibility. Their bones become more fragile and easily broken. In fact, women who are nearing their menopausal period are advised to take lots of calcium-rich foods because the risk for osteoporosis increases. Bone loss is one of the effects of menopause that women should not take for granted.

Fats reign

Unfortunately, changes in the estrogen levels may increase the levels of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol. Often called the bad cholesterol, this increases one's risk of heart disease.

As an added blow, the levels of the high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol or what is called the good cholesterol also decrease as one grows old.

Dr. Nathalie Fiset is a family doctor and a certified hypnotherapist. For more information go to: or

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