The journey to menopause is a tricky one. From findings, some women are not even aware they are in the perimenopausal period, they think they are in the menopause.
There is a difference between the two. Perimenopause and menopause.
Perimenopause is the period surrounding the menopause. It is the moving into menopause. While, Menopause is permanent cessation of menses.
Now let’s go into perimenopause proper!
Perimenopause is the period extending from the first signs of menopause. It is also defined as the period around menopause, lasting up to a year after the last menstrual period.
At what age does this period begin?
Researches have discovered that over a third of women go into perimenopause as young as 35. Averagely, menopause begins at 50.
These are the signs you are perimenopause.
During this period, there are some subtle changes physiologically. Some of which are;
√ Sleep disturbances
√ Anxiety of unknown origin
√ Inability to concentrate
√ Menstrual irregularities
√ Hot flushes/Night sweats
√ Less vagina lubrication
√ Dry skin
√ Mood swings
When in this period, there is need to reinforce your disease prevention strategies. There are also some things you should and should not do.
What you should do are;
1. Maintain your 30minutes daily exercise.
2. Eating of balanced diets that include vitamins and minerals such as magnesium and calcium.
3. Use of oral contraceptive, which provides perimenopausal women with protection against uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, anemia and pregnancy. Yes! You can get pregnant during this period.
4. About 16% of cases of breast cancer occur in this category of women. So, self-examination and mammograms are encouraged.
How will you know you are in perimenopausal period?
Your GP can help you with that. He will perform a form diagnostic test on you to measure the level of your follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). An increase in the level of FSH means you are in perimenopausal period.
What of Hormone Replacement Therapy/(HRT)?
There are some controversies on the use of HRT. Simply because the risks outweigh the benefits. If you consider using it, first consult your healthcare provider.
In our next post on WOMENS‘ CORNER, we shall discuss menopause.
Stay tuned to Universal Nurse Tips Blog.