Today we’re going to talk about the age of perimenopause. Hi, I’m Deborah Maragopoulos, intuitive, integrative family nurse practitioner. Do you ever wonder if you am in perimenopause? What is the actual age that you are supposed to reach before you reach perimenopause? Well let us take a look at that. It really kind of matters what happened to you during your hormonal lifespan.
So, when you start puberty at anywhere from ages Eleven to Fifteen, and you have your first menstrual cycle, you are going to see a mimic of your hormones in the perimenopausal period on the other end of the cycle. Most women menstruate for about thirty-five years. So that window is going to be shorter if you started you periods earlier, longer if you started your periods later.
Hormone Healing Tip 1: Check the Age Menopause Appears in your Family
Now, the biggest factor that you need to pay attention to is number one: what was your mother’s age of menopause? The average age of menopause is Fifty-one. If your mother went through it at 51, she probably started perimenopause a few years before that. Perimenopause can last for five to fifteen years. So your mother may have started it at say forty-six, maybe as early as forty years of age.
So that is going to be your indicator, not just your mother but your maternal relatives, and your grandmother. If you have any older siblings, older sisters, if you have any aunts on your mother’s side of family, asking them can outline the time that you are going to start perimenopause.
Hormone Healing Tip 2: Pay Attention to the Average Age
Number two, what is the average age of perimenopause? Most women start at around forty-five. It can be started as late as forty-nine, and it can be started as early as forty. If you start to have perimenopausal symptoms, which are your irregular cycles, you will see the following symptoms; you are skipping periods, you are getting moodier, you are finding that your PMS is exaggerated, you are starting to have hot flashes. Any of those early symptoms of perimenopause that I have previously covered on this blog, and it starts before the age of forty, that is actually considered early. I have quite a few of my patients that will come to me at thirty-seven, thirty-eight, thirty-nine years of age with early perimenopausal symptoms.
My belief is that this is happening earlier and earlier because of the stress that we are under. Progesterone, which is the main hormone that starts to fall in perimenopause, is also used by your adrenal glands to make stress hormones. So the more stress you are under, the more you waste that progesterone that your ovaries are making and the more likely you are going to start to see perimenopausal symptoms earlier. So the average age, approximately between forty and fifty, is when most women will start having perimenopausal symptoms.
Hormone Healing Tip 3: Look Out for Premature Ovarian Failure
Number three, what if you are younger than that? Well, if you’re earlier than forty, if you are starting to have these perimenopausal symptoms and especially if you’re earlier than thirty-five, you really need to consider that you may be going through premature ovarian failure. That needs to be checked. And what you can do is have your doctor, or your family nurse practitioner, or your physician’s assistant actually draw an FSH, follicle stimulating hormone level about day three to five of your period. So on day three to five, that level should be nice, and nice and low. If it is elevated, over fifteen, you are starting to perimenopause.
Now it will not always show, you may have a good month, and then you have a month where you feel super symptomatic. The more symptomatic months, that next menstrual period, you are going to have a higher FSH, so you may have to check it a few times to see for sure.
I see many, many women that really get misdiagnosed and think it is something else. You are just anxious, maybe you are depressed, you are given anti-anxieties or antidepressants, instead of being treated for perimenopause and you are actually going through perimenopause. So, remember, perimenopause can last five to fifteen years and that the average age is usually somewhere between forty and forty-nine years of age of starting perimenopause.
Thank you for your time, please check in next week for more Healing articles and tips!