Are you worried about the Irregular periods? In your 40s, irregular periods likely mean the initial stage of menopause, also known as perimenopause. But no need to get nervous. It’s a part of every women’s lifecycle, and medical science offers treatments to make this transition phase easier for you.
This post is here to explain what is meant by delay in period or irregular period, what is perimenopause, its different stages, the signs of perimenopause, and how can you get relief from the symptoms of perimenopause. Keep Reading!
How do You Know its Irregular Period?
Before worrying about the missing or irregular period, you must know when to consider your periods to be irregular. Always count your menstruation cycle from the first day of your last period.
So if you get your next period anywhere between 21 to 35 days after the first day of your last period, you are fine. Periods coming earlier or later are a cause of concern and can be considered irregular periods.
What is Perimenopause?
Your menopause is when you haven’t had your periods for a year. Perimenopause is the stage that comes before your menopause with similar symptoms. It can be for a year only if you are lucky. In some cases, it can last up to 10 years. The chances of perimenopause beginning in your 40s are higher and irregular periods can be the first sign of its onset, which is why it is important to keep track of your periods in 40s.
Some women might need treatments like hormone replacement therapy to bear the uncomfortable symptoms. Other lucky women might just breeze through this stage of their reproductive journey.
What Are The Stages of Perimenopause?
Perimenopause occurs in 2 stages - there is an early and a later stage of perimenopause. During the early stage, you witness frequent periods for a few months. But your menstruation cycle gradually turns unpredictable. Your bleeding can also be abnormal. It can be on the heavier or lighter side.
In the later stage, you will experience a delay in periods and hot flushes combined with mood swings. The abnormal bleeding continues in this stage as well.
What are the Common Perimenopause Symptoms?
Apart from irregular and delayed periods, there are many other signs of perimenopause. Check out this list of most common perimenopause symptoms and keep an eye on them in your 40s.
- Night sweats
- Hot flushes
- Vaginal dryness and discomfort during sex
- Reduced libido
- Decline in memory
- Low level of concentration
- Irritability, depression, or anxiety
- Mood swings
- Difficulty in sleeping
Can You Treat Perimenopause?
Perimenopause is one of the natural stages of your reproductive journey. So you can’t and also don’t need to treat it. Once you begin to experience its symptoms, you can assume that your menopause is a few years or a few months away. Most women stop getting periods by the age of 51.
However, there are several ways to deal with Menopause & Perimenopause symptoms. You can take hormone replacement therapy for a few years to get through the nasty symptoms. A healthy lifestyle, including eating nutritious food, being active, and not taking stress, also helps.
You may need anti-depressant or anti-anxiety pills to manage the symptoms like mood swings, anxiety, irritability, depression, etc.
When Should You Visit a Doctor?
Apart from perimenopause, underlying health conditions like STIs, fibroids, polyps, cancer, diabetes, etc., can also affect your menstruation cycle. Visit your doctor if you notice the following signs during your perimenopause or menopause:
- Periods continue for a much longer time than usual.
- Spotting after sex.
- Heavy bleeding during periods with blood clots
- Spotting between periods.
- Unpredictable, much early or delayed periods.