What are the signs of menopause?

mary11February 22, 2005

I am 45 years old, will turn 46 next November. For the last year or so, I have had regular periods, but they have been heavy and for a shorter duration, sometimes tissue sort of things come out of me in chunks. I get PMS big-time these days as well. My moods often swing wildly during the week or two before a period. I sleep like the "princess and the pea", often wake up a time or two at night, then go back to sleep, sometimes it takes an hour or two. My skin is so much drier than it used to be. I am also getting many more freckles and moles (I am not a sun person). I have put on a few stubborn pounds (I am basically thin) that just won't go away with regular dieting as in the past. My libido is like nothing. I used to love sex, and my husband does not understand this. I have one son, age 9.

What can I do?

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catherinet

Hi Mary,
You might try some Progesterone cream, or something like Estroven (pill). Don't go too long having heavy periods, before having your hemoglobin and iron checked out. That can really make you a bit anemic. Some people think soy really helps. Estroven has soy, vitamins, and a few herbs in it, that are supposed to be good for women going through menopause. I think I'd give that a try.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2005 at 8:08PM
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mary11

I am going to see the OB/GYN soon, I will ask her about the cream. I do think things are changing, and so quickly! I do know that in the past, I have always been a little anemic, since a child. PS My mother had me very late in life, age 41 in 1959. I have a brother 18 years older than myself. My mother was of a certain time that she did not share anything about being a woman with me. I learned about periods through a class at school, and sex through friends, and boys. I don't know when exactly she went through menopause, only that she took valiums for a few years in my teens. She had fibroids and did bleed (not real periods, in her sixties). She then had a hysterectomy in her late sixties. She has advanced Alzheimer's now, so it is impossible to ask her anything now that she does not know me. It would help, I guess from this forum to know when my mother went through this as it is probably indicative of when I will.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2005 at 8:26PM
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catherinet

Hi Mary,
Just a word of caution........your OB/GYN might want to put you on HRT...but really give that alot of thought. HRT might help some of your symptoms now, but you'll want to come off of it some time, and you'll just have to go through the symptoms again. I personally would try to deal with the symptoms as best you can without drugs. Try to get plenty of rest, water, good nutrition and excercise.
I'm sorry to hear about your mom. That must be a difficult situation. Does she have any sisters who you might be able to ask, since they probably went through menopause around the same time.
Make sure you have a good general work-up too. Go to an Internist, and have him run some bloodwork on you........like blood chemistries, thyroid, etc. You want to be sure nothing else is going on.
Perimenopause can be a bummer to many of us......lots of unpleasant symptoms. Hopefully your's won't be too painful or last too long. Just be sure it's not your thyroid. Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2005 at 9:21AM
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mary11

I do not want to take the hormone stuff if I don't have to, have heard too many negative comments about it. I have had my thyroid checked in the past and it's been OK but probably will get it checked again. My mother didn't have any sisters so whatever it was with her, will die with her. Should I be taking calcium? Both my mother and grandmother were small-boned, northern european women, and my grandmother especially had it very badly.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2005 at 4:06PM
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catherinet

Hi Mary,
I don't think you need to start any calcium yet, as long as you're getting enough through milk, cheese, yogurt, etc.
Usually, you need to start that after you quit having periods. As long as you're still having a fair number of periods, you're still making estrogen, and that will protect your bones for awhile. Supposedly, weight-bearing excercises are real good to keep your bones healthy.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2005 at 7:39PM
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brant

I am 47 and have been going through PMS big time, night sweats and all the other things menopause brings. I started Estroven abouot 3 months ago and it has stopped the PMS and bloating. I never thought I would be able to find something to help me and I swear by Estroven. I buy it at Costco and it's all natural. Debbie

    Bookmark   February 27, 2005 at 11:40PM
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catherinet

Hi Brant,
I'm glad to hear the Estroven works for you! I think with hormones, we have to give things a chance to work......like several months (as you know), so it's important not to go quickly from one thing to another. We have to bite the bullet and give things a chance to work.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2005 at 7:22AM
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bob411

When you come home and all your cloths are on the front lawn, your wife might be in menopause.

Bob

    Bookmark   March 21, 2005 at 8:36PM
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catherinet

lol Bob!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2005 at 6:33PM
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Garden_Momma

Hi, was wondering about the same kind of symptoms that you had Mary (and I have all those you mentioned) also have an 11 year old the youngest of 4 at home.. .i"ll be 47 june. Another thing I've notice is that I dread getting in car. where as a few years ago you couldn't me get out, and I abhorr having to go shopping or making big meals. I asked dr. if I could get a test done, she said it was expensive so I passed it up. I've heard that when periods stop and go that was when menopause began. But are these 'pre' symptoms of it? I thought it would sound to dumb to ask dr..

Bob that was a good one!!!!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2005 at 7:32AM
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catherinet

HI Garden Momma,
"Perimenopause" is all the time we spend having funky symptoms before Menopause happens. I think menopause is when all this bad stuff finally stops! Perimenopause has been soooo rough for me. I think alot of women and men can't appreciate that it can be a pretty rough road for some of us! I, too, seemed to develop alot of fears during this time, and have become pretty much of a hermit. I'm sure hoping alot of this evens out when menopause is finally here.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2005 at 2:16PM
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suesan_2008

Hi Mary11. The "useful link" will give you the signs of menopause. Beware - they do vary a lot. I didn't have any signs until many months after my period stopped. There was no irregularity. It just stopped altogether. The test for menopause/ pre- or perimenopause is your level of FSH (folicle stimulating hormones). My sprite elderly aunt, a former nurse married to a doctor and who does extensive research can't say enough good things about using natural progesterone cream for the symptoms. You can get it at health food stores (she recommends the progesterone extracted from yams). A dab is rubbed into the skin daily, in a place you would normally blush (thin skin) such as your inner forearm. A break for a few days a month from using it is recommended. Do stay away from non bioidentical HRT which contains horse urine and such. Very controversial and there are alternatives.
Best,
suesan

Here is a link that might be useful: What are the symptoms of menopause?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 9:19PM
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feelnbuggy

I take black cohosh. It is a herb. Easy to find in most general stores. This helps keep my horomones balanced. I do not experience hot flashes. I really think this is sole factor that has prevented the hot flashes. I am 51. Still have a period presently.

Early in my life at 29 my period stopped due to stress. That is when I started the herb. It kept it regular every month. It works for me and has helped me two different ways. I love herbs. They are so helpful and most don't have bad side effects. I do not take it during my cycle. I read it was not recommended.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 9:59AM
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amberpreston

I take estroven and clonidine HCl .1 mg once a day the hot flashes stopped completely after a week of the clonidine. I panic if I run out lol... I started the estroven 2 days ago to see if it helped with the inner tube I'm carrying around.. I never had a weight problem until I had a hysterectomy. Any ideas on getting rid of the inner tube would be helpful

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 12:00AM
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