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Recognizing the Signs of Menopause

You know that you can expect to experience menopause eventually, but you may not be quite certain how to recognize it when it does occur. Recognition is important, because menopause shares some symptoms with dangerous medical issues. Familiarize yourself with the signs before making assumptions, and be sure to get your suspicions confirmed by an OB/GYN.

The term "psychological" does not imply that these symptoms are in your head. In fact, they are directly caused by the hormone changes that occur in a woman's body during menopause.

Changes in Period Regularity

For most women, this is the first indication that they may be experiencing menopause. If your periods have been regular in the past and that pattern changes — and if you are in your mid-to-late 40's — you might be seeing your earliest sign of menopause.

According to the National Institute on Aging, a division of the National Institute of Health, the average age of menopause for women in the United States is 51. That, of course, is just an average. As with anything else, all women's bodies are unique. Anecdotally, women often say they experience menopause around the same age as their mothers did, so that can be a benchmark for predicting your possible menopause age as well.

If you begin experiencing irregular periods or any of the other symptoms listed here before you reach the age of 40, you may be suffering from premature menopause, but you may also have a separate health issue at work. In general, any time previously regular periods become irregular you should consult with your OB/GYN.

Hot Flashes and Night Sweats

Hot flashes and night sweats are part of the same family of menopause symptoms in women, and are among the most common. You can almost be guaranteed to experience one or both of these symptoms at some point during menopause.

Hot flashes come on suddenly and feel like a rush of intense heat radiating through your body from an internal source. You may find yourself flushed and sweating afterward.

Night sweats, on the other hand, usually occur while you are sleeping. It's only when you wake up drenched in sweat that you realize what has happened.

A number of conditions can cause hot flashes and night sweats in women. When they occur as part of the menopause process, hormonal changes are usually the culprit. This can confuse the issue for some women because thyroid and other disorders also cause hormone shifts resulting in hot flashes and night sweats, and also occur more commonly in women of menopausal age.

Fatigue

Everyone gets tired at times, but when you find yourself feeling tired and weak for extended periods, and particularly if this ongoing tiredness begins affecting your day-to-day life, chances are you are experiencing something more serious. If you are within the allotted age group and have other identifying symptoms, your fatigue could be a sign of menopause.

Psychological Symptoms

The term "psychological" does not imply that these symptoms are in your head. In fact, they are directly caused by the hormone changes that occur in a woman's body during menopause, and they may include irritability, memory loss, trouble concentrating, anxiety, depression, mood swings and loss of sex drive.

This is certainly an extensive list, but all of these symptoms stem from the same issue: your body is going through a change, and while it is a natural process, menopause is still a bit jarring on a woman's psychology.

If you are of menopausal age, though, and begin experiencing one or more of these symptoms in conjunction with another of the signs listed here, chances are you are entering the beginning stages of menopause.

Have Your Suspicions Confirmed by Your OB/GYN

As you progress through menopause — a process that lasts up to ten years for some women — you will likely experience not just the symptoms discussed here, but a myriad of others, as well. As a woman, you are already aware that nothing your body does is simple, and menopause is certainly no exception to that rule.

Still, even if you are experiencing the most common early symptoms listed here, and even if you are at the precise age your mother was when she began experiencing symptoms, don't self-diagnose.

Make sure you visit Gainesville OB/GYN physicians at All About Women to confirm that you are, in fact, beginning menopause.


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Gainesville
6440 W Newberry Road, Suite 111
Gainesville, FL 32605
(352) 331-3332
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4447 NW American Lane, Suite 102
Lake City, FL 32055
(386) 754-1744

Gainesville and Lake City OB/GYN Care

OB/GYN doctors at All About Women, Obstetrics & Gynecology offer personalized, technologically advanced obstetrics and gynecology services from Board Certified OB/GYB physicians. Besides expert women's healthcare, permanent birth control and prenatal care, OB/GYN doctors also offers advanced hysterectomy surgery in and around the Gainesville area.


Women's Health Care in Alachua & Columbia Counties

With offices in Gainesville and Lake City, Florida, All About Women, M.D. provides expert OB/GYN services covering the entire range of women's healthcare needs. Our OB/GYN physicians and nurse midwives provide expert care during pregnancy as well as state of the art in-office treatments for gynecologic disorders including Novasure endometrial ablation to treat/stop heavy menstrual bleeding.

Personalized & Expert Prenatal Care

Gainesville obstetricians at All About Women, M.D. help ensure pregnancy goes as smoothly as possible by offering the best prenatal care available. And for those having difficulty getting pregnant, AAW obstetricians and gynecologists offer couples the best infertility help and treatment available.


Advanced Minimally Invasive Surgery: daVinci Surgical System

Clinic founder Dr. Anthony Agrios, Board Certified Obstetrician and Gynecologist also specializes in the daVinci Robotic surgery system, a minimally invasive option commonly used for a hysterectomy and other procedures. Instead of creating several small incisions like traditional surgical methods, OB/GYN surgeons simply open one incision with the daVinci system to complete the procedure. Not only do patients experience less pain and blood loss, they recover and get back to normal much faster.


Pregnancy & Prenatal Care: Creative Pregnancy Announcement : Fruits for Pregnant Women

OB/GYN Tips: Choosing an OB/GYN : Robotic Hysterectomy

Infertility & Reproduction Health: Infertility Treatment : Permanent Birth Control

Women's Health: Preventive Care : Well Women Care : Mammogram Screenings : Abnormal Periods

Gainesville Maternity Care

 

FL OBGYN   Services
All About Women
Gainesville and Lake City, Florida Obstetrics & Gynecology

Offices conveniently located in the heart of North Florida (Alachua County & Columbia County). Serving women of all ages and backgrounds
in and around Ocala, Williston, Chiefland, Perry, Live Oak, Lake City, Starke, Palatka and Gainesville.