Naturally, menopause does not happen overnight and your body will give early warnings between two to six years before the actual menopause. This transitional cycle is what is termed as perimenopause. During this transitional perimenopause period, the earliest sign that you may experience are irregular or missed periods as the ovaries hormones production decreases causing it being unable to release the egg that regulate the menstrual cycle.
In some cases, the monthly periods will cease immediately and never to return. However, in majority of perimenopause cases, these irregularities happen in gradually and you will notice a lacking of flow and the length at which your monthly period occurs is becoming shorter. For most women having perimenopause, this gradual reduction in both the flow and the length of period can last between one to three years before the bleeding completely stopped. It is important that you take this time to prepare yourself early. Perimenopause with the proper understanding can equip you both in knowledge and emotions to better deal with the more serious symptoms in the near future
The best person that can tell whether your menopause symptoms are abnormal which means early menopause or just normal indications of perimenopause is your gynecologist. In general, there are three tests that can be done:
Pap smear – to assess whether the vaginal lining is thinning
Bone density – to see if you are at risk of osteoporosis, a common feature of menopause
FSH test – follicle stimulating hormone count test to detect hormonal changes
Before your doctor visit, you can even use a menopause test kit that conveniently at home. It works similar to home pregnancy test and need a doctor confirmation to verify the results. If it is positive, then obviously you are in perimenopause. However, if is turns out to be negative, you can still visit your doctor to get a second opinion. Keep a journal on your menses, any symptoms that you may have including signs of depression. It can help your doctor in the diagnostic.
It is important to note that every woman experiences menopause, whether early menopause, perimenopause or just a normal. Treatment of menopause is usually given for the specific symptoms that you cannot control and affecting your life and health. If possible, learn to accept the fact that perimenopause symptoms are just about the body undergoing some changes. Keep an eye on menopause that happen before the normal age as it needs special attention and consultation with your doctor is necessary. Find out from your family the time at which they experienced perimenopause as it can be an indicator for yourself.
In general, perimenopause relief can be achieved by accepting the changes that your body is undergoing through changes in lifestyle. During perimenopause, the symptoms are not severe and you should get used to it in preparation for the actual menopause. You can consider alternative treatment that uses natural ingredients. Drugs and surgery is usually the choice when the symptoms are severe and through doctor's recommendation.