Signs And Symptoms That Menopause Is On The Way

Menopause is the experience that marks the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle.

Menopause is the experience that marks the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle. Your doctor will consider you to have experienced Menopause when you have had no menstrual period for more than twelve months. This usually happens at around aged fifty although there are many women who experience it a little bit earlier or later.

Many women find the symptoms of menopause to be quite uncomfortable. Hot flashes can disturb everyday life and energy levels can feel at an all-time low as your body adjusts to this shift in hormonal activity. Emotional health is often the biggest symptom. Many women describe being very teary and more emotional than normal. This can affect relationships in their life as well as how they handle everyday work and stress.

Irregular periods may be the first sign that Menopause is beginning. Women who typically had very regular cycles may begin to notice a change in their pattern as well as missing a period completely on any given month. Periods may also be shorter in length and therefore more periods are experienced. Even though your cycle has become irregular it is still very much possible to conceive a baby. For this reason, it is always a good idea to take a pregnancy test or have blood work done if you are having unprotected sex during this phase of your life.

In some cases, menopause may not happen the natural way. Certain health issues can lead to surgical menopause which is essentially forcing your body to experience menopause by removing the ovaries and fallopian tubes.

Vaginal dryness and hot flashes are extremely common during menopause. Interrupted sleep is also something many women experience. One minute you might feel cold and the next you are experiencing hot sweats. This can really affect your ability to have a peaceful night’s sleep which can affect general everyday well-being. This can also have an impact on your mood as lack of sleep is something that really affects one’s mental health and energy levels.

Confidence levels may be affected as changes in your metabolism can have an impact on your weight. Weight gain or weight loss may occur even if your diet is exactly as it always was. Breast tissue can also change and breasts may feel less full. Many women experiencing a thinning of hair on top of this so it is easy to see how menopause and lack of self-confidence or insecurity can go hand in hand. Your body is experiencing a huge emotional and physical change.

Interestingly enough lifestyle factors such as smoking can affect when menopause happens. Smokers tend to experience menopause a couple of years sooner while race, age of first period and birth control do not seem to affect the timing.

Menopause is nothing to worry about. It is a normal biological process that is completely expected. You can make an appointment to see your doctor if symptoms are overwhelming you or becoming difficult to manage. There are a number of natural and hormonal therapies which may improve things. Your doctor will also be able to take regular blood tests to look at hormone levels and determine where you are in the menopause phase or if you are in it at all.

Tracey is a happy mammy to four-year-old Billy. She is a breastfeeder, gentle parent and has recently lost five stone so healthy family eating is her passion! You can find her at

Tracey Quinn

Proud mum of two who got married on Don't Tell The Bride and had an accidental home-birth (loves a good story). She's passionate about breastfeeding, positive thinking & all things cosy.

Read more by Tracey
{{ post.excerpt }}
{{ post.content.formatted }}

What is Family Friendly HQ?

Family Friendly HQ is Ireland’s trusted parenting community, dedicated to mums and dads, and families of all shapes and sizes.

Read more about us