A natural part of aging for any woman is the gradual transition into older adulthood, which comes with a variety of changes in hormone levels. In particular, estrogen and progesterone levels change, greatly affecting many of the sexual hormones. Not only will sexual changes happen for these women, but also they will notice a wide variety of symptoms across most of their body systems, some of which may not be very pleasant. We’re talking about perimenopause and menopause.
Menopause is officially defined as the time when a woman has not had a menstrual period for 12 months. As you can imagine, it can be difficult for women to know when they are entering this period. Therefore, it is vital to recognize the many symptoms of this stage so that you can get help if you need it and so that you can give yourself grace and understanding.
The first changes that you will most likely notice are those that affect your menstrual cycle. It may become irregular or may be heavier or lighter than usual. Your vagina may also feel dry and inelastic.
The next most severe change that most women in menopause note is hot flashes. These flashes normally last for less than 10 minutes at a time and may cause flushed skin and sweating.
Changes in sleep patterns can be very disruptive to women in this stage of life. You may find that it is nearly impossible to get to sleep at night or that you wake up for no reason.
Mood imbalances that are far different from any experienced in other stages of life may also afflict women in menopause. While some mood changes may seem to mimic those seen during PMS, they are usually stronger and more disruptive.
Of course, other changes may happen around the rest of your body. Your hair may begin to thin on your head and even on the rest of your body, meaning that you no longer have to shave your legs as frequently. Your skin will also begin to change faster than it ever has before, becoming thinner and less elastic and most likely becoming dryer as well.
Be sure to talk to our team at Fort Worth Center for Pelvic Medicine if you feel that your menopause symptoms are decreasing your quality of life. Contact us today for a consultation in Fort Worth, TX.