Hello. I will turn 40 in a few months and for the past few months I've been noticing some strange symptoms with my cycle. I missed a period entirely in December. January was about a week early but fairly normal as far as symptoms and length/intensity, but this month I was about a week late and it appears to be more like spotting than an actual period. I have been battling daytime sleepiness and moodiness for the past few months, but I haven't really noticed any of the other hallmark symptoms typically listed in association with perimenopause. From what I've researched, missing two or three periods in a row is cause for a doctor's visit, but I was curious if anyone has any experience with this type of symptom pattern. I'm not exactly sure when my mother went through menopause, but I know she was in full menopause before she turned 50. I am definitely not pregnant and I'm not experiencing any other symptoms of concern. Would 39/40 be considered out of the norm to already be experiencing the cycle changes? Thanks.
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@lynnlee22 I would agree that at 39/40, this is early for these changes to happen, but it also may be that it is an inherited tendency. You would need a medical opinion about that and for them to rule out other possible causes that could cause unusual bleeding. Something could be missed if it was assumed to be from changing hormones and there could be something else that needs treatment. I went through these changes later as most women do. My doctor did begin bio-identical hormone replacement before I was in full menopause which helped because I was experiencing muscle stiffness and being tired a lot. Is that something you would consider? Bone density is affected by hormones, and hormone replacement can help retain minerals in bone.
Yes- definitely something I would consider. I just didn't want to seek out additional testing if it wasn't warranted. I mentioned this to my GP when I saw him in December (the month I completely missed my period). Once I told him that pregnancy was not a possibility, he said with my age, it was very likely perimenopause, but I've been reading information that suggests it typically happens later in life.
@lynnlee22 You don't need permission to seek answers to your questions. I'm glad you asked here, and I try to always be an example on how to advocate for yourself. It is very easy for doctors to miss something based on what you do or don't tell them. You know your body best and you are paying attention, so if you have concerns, don't hesitate to ask your doctors, or even consult a specialist if you feel you did not get a satisfactory answer. After menopause, if you had bleeding, that could indicate another problem and it would warrant being checked out by a gynecologist. What we do here on Connect as patients is learn from each other though our experiences, but that does not replace a medical opinion. Do you have older sisters or close female relatives you can talk to about this kind of information in case it is a family trait? I remember that the time between my cycles toward the last of them was erratic and increasing all the time until they stopped.
Thank you for the kind response. I don't have any siblings and my mother passed away at 55, so I don't have any definitive information from her. I do know that she also had irregular cycles leading up to menopause and that she had been in menopause for at least five years when she died. If I were to fathom a guess, I'd say she was probably 45-47 when she reached menopause. I did speak with one of aunts and she said she was 46, so it's not out of the realm of possibility. I will see what happens this month with my cycle and I'll call and schedule an appointment if things continue to be outside of the norm. Again, thank you for your help.
@lynnlee22 I'm so sorry about your mom. Hugs. She was pretty young, and you would have been young too when you lost her. Do you have other close family that you can share time with? My mom is in her nineties.
Hey there! Reading your post brought back lots of memories of perimenopause. I’m 54 now and have been in menopause for 2 years. The absolute best thing I did when I was 44 was I started a period journal. That’s when I started noticing things changing. The same kinds of things you are experiencing—a little longer or shorter cycles, color and flow changes and some unpredictable mood shifts. I’ve never been pregnant (though I took a few at home tests when I would skip a period). I’ve also never had an abnormal Pap smear. I kept my journal in a note on my IPad. It’s a little tedious but I’m glad I did it because now I know that my perimenopause was about 8 years. Hang in there!! It’ll be okay ☀️Just know it goes on for awhile….