If you’re a little unclear about perimenopause and how long it lasts, you’re not alone. Far fewer people talk about perimenopause than menopause, so you’re sure to have questions.
What Is Perimenopause?
Perimenopause is a period of transition between when normal periods stop and menopause begins. During this time, you will probably notice changes in your period along with other physical and emotional symptoms.
When Does Perimenopause Start?
Perimenopause usually starts when women are in their 40s. However, it can start as early as your 20s or 30s. It begins when your ovaries start to make less estrogen.
How Long Does Perimenopause Last?
Perimenopause lasts for a different amount of time for each person. The average length of time is four years. However, it’s possible to experience it for only a few months or to have it last as long as ten years.
You can know that perimenopause has ended and menopause has begun when you’ve gone a full year without having a period.
What Are Some Symptoms of Perimenopause?
If you’re in your 40s (or even younger) and start to experience some of these symptoms, it may be a sign that you’re experiencing perimenopause:
- Irregular periods
- More intense PMS
- Mood swings
- Hot flashes
- Tender breasts
- Lower sex drive
- Vaginal dryness
- Urine leakage
- Weight gain
- Sleep problems
- Headaches or muscle aches
- Memory issues
- Increased heart rate
- Difficulty conceiving (if trying to have a baby)
These symptoms are similar to those of menopause, but they become more intense the closer you get to menopause.
When Should I See a Doctor?
While irregular periods and other symptoms are normal for up to ten years during perimenopause, it’s important to see an Ob/Gyn if you’re experiencing any of these symptoms as well:
- Heavier periods
- Periods with clots
- Longer periods
- More frequent periods
- Spotting between periods or after sex
An Ob/Gyn can also recommend solutions for problems with sex drive or discuss antidepressant medications for mood swings.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you are experiencing perimenopause and have concerns, go ahead and schedule an appointment with us. Huey & Weprin Ob/Gyn is a leader in Ob/Gyn research development and offers a wide range of gynecological and obstetric services. Call 937-771-5100 or fill out the form on this page to schedule an appointment.