Google is searching for early symptoms of menopause. And with statistics showing that around 5% of women in the UK go through early menopause at some point in their lives, this is hardly surprising.
Yes, it is one in every 100 women.
Have you ever googled the reasons for missing a period? (opens in new tab)Or searched ‘What is Perimenopause? (opens in new tab)‘, it’s definitely worth a read. because we know you do female hormones too (opens in new tab) Can be a bit of a mine sometimes.
So to ease all your worries, we chatted with Dr Laila Kaikavusi, a representative from the UK First Online Menopause Center (opens in new tab), Here, she explains what early menopause really is and why it happens, plus the symptoms that should be on your radar.
What is the definition of early menopause?
menopause (opens in new tab) Being ‘early’ simply means not having a period of twelve months at the age of 45. For most women, menopause usually occurs between the ages of 50 and 55 and results in infertility, or the inability to conceive children. (opens in new tab),
Doctors share that one in 1,000 women under the age of 30 and one in 10,000 women under the age of 20 also experience a first menopause, known as ‘premature menopause’.
Wait, so what’s the difference between early menopause and premature menopause?
The difference between premature menopause and early menopause is when it occurs. Early menopause occurs when a woman’s periods stop before the age of 45. Premature menopause occurs before the age of 40.
Is early menopause common?
No, but sharing the cacophony, doctors initially thought it was more common, and many cases still go undiagnosed. Early menopause (menopause before 45) affects about 5% of women, while premature menopause (menopause before 40) occurs in about 1%. It is incredibly rare to experience menopause in your 20s.
a bit like PMDD (opens in new tab) – This is premenstrual dysphoric disorder – it is less widely reported and needs more funding and research.
So, what is the difference between premature menopause and premature ovarian failure?
While some people use the terms interchangeably, premature menopause is not the same as premature ovarian failure (also known as primary ovarian insufficiency or POI).
POI is when your periods stop suddenly and spontaneously – but there is still a chance that your period will return. People with POI can still ovulate, menstruate, and become pregnant. However, with early or premature menopause, you don’t have periods, and you lose the ability to get pregnant.
What are the main causes of the condition?
From autoimmune diseases to genetic factors to infections, there are many things that play a role. Unfortunately, for most women — 90%, according to research from OMCs — no underlying cause can be found. It can make it even more painful (opens in new tab)And it’s hard to cope psychologically.
However, the reason for this situation has been found to be the following:
- surgery (eg removal of the ovaries or hysterectomy during which the blood supply to the ovaries may be severed)
- Medical treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy
- Autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, or thyroid disease
- genetic disorders, such as Turner syndrome
- Infections, such as TB and mumps
- Family history of menopause at an early age.
15 Symptoms of Early Menopause
Symptoms of early menopause are almost identical to symptoms of menopause, experts share.
These range from physical to psychological, and include the following:
- heat up
- night sweats
- feeling more pain
- decrease in energy level
- brain fog
- headache (opens in new tab)
- poor quality of hair and skin
- urinary tract infections (opens in new tab) (UTI)
- increased episodes of cystitis
- low libido
- raise concern (opens in new tab) levels
- depressed mood
- difficulty controlling anger
How is early menopause diagnosed?
Your GP will diagnose early menopause based on a number of factors, including the regularity of your periods, your symptoms, your family history, and blood tests that will check your hormone levels. As a result they may decide to refer you to a specialist.
Are there any risks associated with early menopause?
Essentially, early menopause comes with its complications, and can increase your risk of developing other conditions. These include infertility, bone loss or osteoporosis, a potential risk of heart disease due to low estrogen levels, and mood disorders such as stress, anxiety, and depression. Please know, however, that support is available – including HRT (opens in new tab) – Do you need it?
Here are some top tips for dealing with this situation.
5 top tips for dealing with the early symptoms of menopause
1. Know Your Symptoms
It sounds simple, when you are busy day after day and express your lethargy as general fatigue it is not so easy. (opens in new tab), Tune in to yourself and make sure to keep a record of any strange symptoms you’re experiencing. It will be helpful for your doctor, if you have to go.
2. Expand Your Knowledge
Don’t Use Google in Place of a Medical Professional – It’s Never a Good Idea – But Doing Read also what your symptoms could mean, and possible treatments.
“Increasing your knowledge about this condition will help you start the right treatment to prevent future health problems,” shares Kaikavusi.
3. Talk to an Expert
If you notice any of the above symptoms, the most important thing is to talk to your doctor, Kakavusi emphasizes. “Make sure you see a specialist and get tested,” she shares.
“Testing blood hormone levels is important to establish a diagnosis and receive the correct treatment. Receive an early evaluation and start the most appropriate hormone replacement therapy as it may prevent future diseases such as early heart disease, dementia and osteoporosis, She concludes.
“Premature Ovarian Failure Made Me Menopause At 28”
Katie Ayres, a maternal grandmother from Ludlow, Shropshire, suffered from early menopause in the late twentieth century. When her periods initially became irregular, she thought nothing of it – she was young and healthy. But after an accident, her periods stopped completely. This is his story.
“My periods have always been irregular, but I just put it on to have the contraceptive implant. I wasn’t really worried about it. But after a bad riding accident in 2017, my periods stopped completely.”
Tests showed I had premature ovarian insufficiency (POI), a condition that means the ovaries stop producing eggs (and in some cases decades) earlier than they should. POI also means that the ovaries are unable to produce hormones. (opens in new tab) estrogen and progesterone, which are important to a woman’s health and well-being.”
“Doctors said that the POI could have been brought on by accident but they are not really sure about the cause. I was having hot flushes about three or four times a day – all of a sudden I was dripping with absolutely no energy. The levels were very low – I do a lot of marathons but everything was just an effort. I just didn’t feel like myself.”
“I asked Dr. Layla for help at the Online Menopause Center and she was great. She gave me a personalized treatment plan of hormone replacement therapy containing estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone. Within six weeks, I felt better and more like my old self I have rarely had any hot flushes.”
“I’m strong enough and have gone through a lot but some days I have bad days – when friends and family say ‘oh I’m pregnant’. It’s not jealousy, it’s jealousy because I never do it I’ll get it.”
“I would really like to have kids but really all I could do would be through an egg donor which is quite a big deal. Meeting someone and telling them that hurts me.”
“When I was diagnosed, I started doing a lot of research — I realized there were a lot of girls with it. Some are younger than me. Being on social media and following support groups like Daisy Network (opens in new tab) Really helped because I realized it’s not just me.”
“My family has been very supportive and I feel lucky. I also do one thing that I love, working with horses, which gives me great pleasure.”
For more information, head Online Menopause Center (opens in new tab), where they offer virtual video consultations and individually tailored treatment plans. Similarly, NHS website (opens in new tab) And Daisy Network (opens in new tab) There are easy guides. If you are concerned, see your doctor.
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