This is the second stage in the menopause process which occurs after the perimenopause.

This is often confused with premature menopause but these are two separate conditions.

Premature menopause is dealt with in a separate section.

This stage in the process is characterised by a range of physical and psychological symptoms which a woman experiences up until the date of her last menstrual period.

Signs of the premenopause

Your ovaries are producing fewer hormones than before but this is accelerated during this stage.

This will manifest itself in a range of symptoms which affect you both physically and mentally.

These include:

  • Insomnia
  • Tendency to anger
  • Mild depression
  • Anxiety/panic attacks
  • Hot flushes
  • Dry skin
  • Bladder problems, e.g. incontinence
  • Night sweats
  • Vaginal dryness

These symptoms will have arisen during the perimenopausal stage but will be much more noticeable at this stage in the process.

The extent of these symptoms varies between individuals. Some women will have a far worse time than others and will experience the full range of symptoms.

Other women appear to breeze through the whole process with only a few signs that they are doing so.

You may experience some symptoms more than others. No two women experience the menopause in the same way which is usually for a variety of reasons.

These include genetics, lifestyle, diet, ethnicity and social background.

Women who have led a sensible lifestyle up until the menopause which includes healthy eating, exercise and minimal stress are likely to have an easier transition through the menopause.

Once the symptoms of the premenopause become apparent it means that the menopause is on its way.

Is there any treatment for the symptoms of the premenopause?

There are steps you can take to ease the symptoms of the premenopause. These include a few self help actions such as a healthy diet, taking exercise and taking a calcium supplement.

Hormone replacement therapy or HRT is another option although there are risks associated with this.

If you are thinking about HRT then speak to your GP beforehand.

For more information about treatment visit our menopause treatment section.

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