Women usually experience menopause after 40 years. However, you may represent a small percentage of women who have menopause earlier than others, which is before the age of 40. Premature menopause means that a woman’s reproductive years have ended, as her ovaries stop producing estrogen and progesterone, the hormones responsible to regulate woman's reproductive cycle.
A woman experiencing premature menopause notices the same symptoms as a woman attaining menopause at the normal age. It is just that symptoms occur at a younger age due to lack of hormones production.
Hot flashes: Women get hot flashes when they're in menopause, which can be simply explained as the body's reaction to a decreased supply of estrogen. These are felt as a sudden, transient sensation of warmth or heat that spreads over the body.
Night sweats: Women in menopause may also get the night time version of hot flashes, known as night sweats (nocturnal hyperhydrosis). Night sweat is often confused as sleep disorder, but it is a common perspiration disorder that occurs during sleep.
Vaginal dryness: In menopause, women’s estrogen levels drop which leads to vaginal tissues’ dryness. Due to the loss of usual moist lining of vaginal area, it may become itchy frequently, which makes sex uncomfortable and also women become more prone to infections.
Severe mood swings: Women’s mood swings become intense in premature menopause, just like a psychological disorder of chronic mood swings.
Fatigue: Fatigue is common in women passing through the menopausal transition, which can be a persistent feeling of weakness, tiredness and a dip in energy levels. It may turn into chronic fatigue where it has a drastic impact on daily life, including strain on relationships, work productivity and quality of life.
Hair loss or thinning: Owing to estrogen deficiency, hair follicles starve for estrogen, only to end up being thin. It leads to hair loss or thinning of hair (gradual or sudden). There may be a gradual loss of pubic hair.
Disorientation and confusion: In menopause, women may find it difficult to remember things. They can have mental blocks or trouble in concentration. Several factors contribute to confused state of mind, which include sleep disruptions and mood swings.
Weight gain: Fat accumulation around the abdominal region is indicative of menopausal transition. It occurs because of the slowdown in metabolism rate.
If you are under 40 and experiencing the aforementioned or similar symptoms, check with your doctor to determine whether you are undergoing premature menopause.
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