How Do I Know I Am in Menopause?
Menopause is the process where your ovaries cease to function and to produce estrogen. The menstrual period with cease to happen in a monthly cycle.
But despite experiencing a number of symptoms, including hot flashes, night sweats, and mood changes, many women wonder: Is this menopause?
Continue reading to learn all about the menopause process and how to confirm that you have officially entered menopause.
When Does Menopause Start?
Most women reach menopause between the ages 48 and 54 with the average age being 51.
That being said, menopause is often a years-long process that occurs in 3 distinct stages – perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause.
During perimenopause, estrogen levels slowly decline, but haven’t completely stopped. Progesterone levels usually start to fall.
As a result, women may continue to have a monthly period and their ovaries may still release eggs. This means that it’s possible for a woman to get pregnant, and an effective birth control method is needed until one year after their last period.
Women may also begin to experience some noticeable changes in perimenopause, including:
- Irregular periods
- Hot flashes
- Vaginal dryness
- Sleep disturbances
- Mood swings
How Do I Know that my Symptoms are due to Menopause?
If you’re noticing some of the aforementioned symptoms, you may be wondering: How do I know that my symptoms are due to hormonal changes that are leading to menopause?
What Happens After Menopause?
Post-menopause is the third stage in this journey and represents all the years following menopause.
Although most women report a significant decrease in menopause symptoms, it is still common to experience some lingering effects such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness.
Schedule a Consult with a Menopause Specialist
For additional information about menopause symptoms and stages, please call our office today to schedule a comprehensive consultation with board-certified gynecologist, Melinda S. Hall MD.