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Can You Hit Menopause At 25

Treatments For Early Menopause

Menopause at 25: Trying to regain my fertility – BBC Stories

The main treatment for early menopause is either the combined contraceptive pill or HRT to make up for your missing hormones.

A GP will probably recommend you take this treatment until at least the age of natural menopause , to give you some protection from osteoporosis and other conditions that can develop after the menopause.

If you have had certain types of cancer, such as certain types of breast cancer, you may not be able to have hormonal treatment.

The GP will talk to you about other treatment options and lifestyle changes you can make to help protect your health.

If you’re still getting symptoms, the GP can refer you to a specialist menopause centre.

Going through the menopause early can be difficult and upsetting.

Permanent early menopause will affect your ability to have children naturally.

You may still be able to have children by using IVF and donated eggs from another woman, or using your own eggs if you had some stored. Surrogacy and adoption may also be options for you.

Counselling and support groups may be helpful.

Here are some you may want to try:

Page last reviewed: 02 February 2021 Next review due: 02 February 2024

An Early First Menstrual Period May Lead To Premature Menopause

How do you know if you’re starting perimenopause?

The most telling symptom is changes in your menstrual cycle, says psychiatrist Hadine Joffe, the executive director of the Connors Center for Women’s Health and Gender Biology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

“It’s the menstrual cycle pattern that really defines this lead-up to menopause,” she says. During perimenopause, periods “might be shorter, then a long one, or then a skipped one, or then the flow might be different,” says Joffe.

There’s no blood or hormone test that can “diagnose” perimenopause. Joffe says a hormone test isn’t helpful because hormonal cycles become erratic and unpredictable during this stage.

“There’s not really one point in time when a hormone test is done that can be definitive,” she says. Even if you took several tests over time, “you might get a very different readout.”

Surprisingly, sometimes doctors aren’t prepared to help women recognize the start of this life phase. Edrie was upset at her doctors’ responses â or lack thereof. “I felt so disappointed in the medical industry. How many women has my OB/GYN seen and not recognized the symptoms of perimenopause?”

What symptoms to expect

Are There Any Tests For Menopause

The most accurate way to tell if it’s happening to you is to watch your menstrual cycles for 12 months in a row. It helps to keep track of your periods and chart them as they become irregular. Menopause has happened when you have not had any period for an entire 12 months.

Your doctor can check your blood for follicle stimulating hormone . The levels will jump as your ovaries begin to shut down. As your estrogen levels fall, youâll notice hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and less lubrication during sex.

The tissue in and around your vagina will thin as estrogen drops, too. The only way to check for this is through a Pap-like smear, but itâs rarely done. As this happens, you might have urinary incontinence, painful sex, a low sex drive, and vaginal itching.

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Going Through Menopause In Your 20s And 30s Sucks

  • Snap

“I’m self-conscious of sweating. Now I have to think about what clothes I’m going to wear. One day I thought I’d be fine and I wore a pale grey T-shirt to work and that was a disaster. The hot flushes are crazythey come out of nowhere at any time and I’m suddenly drenched in sweat.”

Sophie is 31 years old. She works as a television producer at an advertising agency in England. Like many young professionals, her priorities include her career, a mortgage, maybe marriage. She didn’t plan to add menopause to that list.

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The Londoner suffers from severe endometriosis. Her endometriumthe cells that line her wombhave migrated to other parts of her body. In Sophie’s case, that means her uterus and bowels. These cells follow her menstrual cycle, building and then breaking up and bleeding when she has her period. But unlike regular cells in the womb that are shed during menstruation, the excess blood has no way of being released and leads to chronic pain, heavy periods, inflammation, and the formation of scar tissue.

In order to prepare for an operation to have this excess endometrium cut out, Sophie was injected with Zoladex, a man-made hormone used to effectively switch off her period for three months. This will tame the endometrium, making it less bloody and easier to manage.

They did some blood tests and said, ‘Right, you’ve just been through menopause. That’s it. We can’t do anything about it. Off you go.’

Here’s What Women Need To Know About Early Menopause Which Occurs Between Ages 40 And 45 And Premature Menopause Which Occurs Before Age 40

Looking for ways to manage the symptoms of menopause so ...

For Leslie Mac, it started with irregular menstrual periods. Mac, a digital strategist and organizer, didn’t think much of it, but once she started going months without menstruating, she decided to see her doctor. “Something must be wrong,” she remembered thinking.

She was not expecting to hear that, at 28, she had already entered perimenopause, the transition to menopause.

“I didn’t even know it was possible to start the process so early,” Mac explained. By 34, she received a diagnosis of menopause, which is officially diagnosed when a woman goes a year without a menstrual period.

Menopause is a normal part of a woman’s life and signals the end of the reproductive years. In the U.S., this typically occurs around age 51, but 5% of women have early menopause, which occurs between ages 40 and 45, and 1% experience premature menopause, which occurs before age 40.

While age of diagnosis may differ, premature and early menopause follow the same process as usual menopause. As women age, the levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone in their body begin to decline. In premenopausal women, the ovaries produce these hormones in a regular cycle, and they’re important for both reproductive and overall health.

“You have estrogen receptors everywhere in your body,” explained Dr. Barb DePree, director of the Women’s Midlife Services at Holland Hospital, founder of MiddlesexMD and a member of HealthyWomen’s Women’s Health Advisory Council.

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Predicting Natural Menopause: Why Does Age Matter

If theres not a lot that women can do to change when theyll experience menopause, why does predicting it even matter?

It would be helpful for every woman to know exactly when menopause will arrive. Beyond recognizing and addressing issues such as increased cardiovascular disease risk and risks related to bone health, if a woman knows her age of menopause and how long the perimenopause transition will last, it could help her make important health decisions, says Faubion.

If youre bleeding like crazy it would be helpful to know, she says.

As of now, research hasnt uncovered a way to determine when a women will go into menopause, but having that information could be useful in making decisions such as whether to have a hysterectomy or other invasive procedures, says Faubion. If menopause is going to be a few months or a year from now, you may choose to wait it out; if it’s going to be five years from now, you might want to go ahead and have an invasive procedure, she says.

The ability to predict when menopause will occur could also help with managing menopause symptoms or deciding which type of birth control to use, adds Faubion.

The Complete List Of 35 Symptoms Of Menopause

Some symptoms ofmenopause can occur years before a woman experiences her last period, whileothers can last for years afterwards as well. Since hormones vary from onewoman to another, menopause affects all women differently. Some may experiencevery few symptoms while others could experience most of them. Symptoms can alsovary in frequency and severity.

So, what are these symptoms that signal menopause is upon you? Lets talk about all the 35 symptoms of menopause to look out for.

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Induced Menopause Following Cancer Therapy

Ovarian damage from cancer therapy depends on the age at treatment and on the type of treatment. Women younger than age 40 years and children are at lower risk for ovarian failure than older women; however, exposure to higher doses of alkylating agents and higher doses of radiation to the ovary are more likely to induce ovarian failure . Based on the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study , a cohort study of survivors of childhood cancer treated at 25 cancer centers throughout North America between 1970 and 1986, approximately 6% of childhood cancer survivors experienced acute ovarian failure during cancer treatment or shortly after completing cancer treatment . Another 8% retained ovarian function during treatment but later developed premature menopause . This is believed to be an underestimate of the true population incidence of premature menopause because the median age attained in this group at the time of analysis was only 29 years .

Follow-up of childhood cancer survivors has identified an increase in miscarriages, an increase in small for gestational age offspring, and a reduction in live births . Longer term health outcomes, beyond cancer free survival, are not yet available; however, these subjects are expected to be at increased risk for osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, psychosexual dysfunction, and decreased quality of life .

Psychological Wellbeing & Emotions

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The diagnosis of a premature or early menopause can bring many changes and challenges: when menopause does not come at the age and stage of life you expected it to, it can have a major impact on your wellbeing. Women who experience premature or early menopause can be at greater risk of depression, anxiety and mood changes.

It can be very upsetting for some women to experience menopause in their 20s or 30s when they expected it to happen in their late 40s or 50s. Often this is a time of feelings of loss, sadness and grief. These feelings are very common, along with the feelings of losing your body image, fertility, femininity and sexuality, and feeling old before your time.

It can take some time to diagnose a premature or early menopause. Not knowing what is wrong, having no control over symptoms and not knowing what the future holds can be frightening. Some women with early menopause talk of ‘loss of womanhood’ and ‘loss of dreams’.

Associated illnesses, such as cancer and chemotherapy or surgery to remove ovaries, may also alter the course of your life. Plans, dreams and expectations must be re-thought and that can be very challenging and distressing.

During this time, women can experience a sense of loss of control, loss of ability to plan and loss of self-image, but often there is no one with whom to share the grief. Girlfriends might not understand because they are not yet experiencing menopause, and, for some, mothers haven’t yet reached menopause either.

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How Can I Treat The Symptoms

There are a bunch of ways.

Lifestyle changes. A healthy diet and regular exercise program will help manage your symptoms and boost your health. This is a great time to finally kick any old, unhealthy habits like smoking or drinking too much alcohol. To help with hot flashes, dress lightly and in layers. Avoid triggers like caffeine and spicy foods. And if you stay sexually active, that may help preserve your vaginal lining.

Prescription medication for hot flashes. If you still have your uterus, your doctor might prescribe treatment with estrogen and progesterone. This is called combination hormone therapy or hormone replacement therapy . It helps with hot flashes and night sweats, and it may help prevent osteoporosis. If you donât have a uterus, you might get estrogen alone.

Hormone therapy isnât for everyone. Donât take it if you’ve ever had breast cancer, uterine or “endometrial” cancer, blood clots, liver disease, or a stroke. Also don’t take it if you might be pregnant or you have undiagnosed vaginal bleeding.

If you can’t or don’t want to take hormones, other medications can ease symptoms. They include antidepressants, antiseizure drugs, or blood pressure medications to help with hot flashes and mood swings.

Prescription and OTC medication for vaginal dryness and sleep problems. You can try topical estrogen, lubricants, and non-estrogen prescriptions for dryness and painful sex. OTC or prescription sleep aids can help if you have trouble falling asleep.

Symptoms Of Early Menopause

The main symptom of early menopause is periods becoming infrequent or stopping altogether without any other reason .

Some women may also get other typical menopausal symptoms, including:

Read more about the symptoms of the menopause.

Women who go through early menopause also have an increased risk of osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease because of their lowered oestrogen hormone levels.

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Early Menopause At 46 Was A Surprise Now I Realize It Was Also A Gift

I spent a chunk of this year crunching the numbers, like some kind of gynecological accountant. It boiled down to this: If I got to the end of July with no period, I had probably reached menopause. If I got to the end of August, I definitely had.

A few weeks before my 46th birthday in September, I reached the 12-month milestone, which officially made me a menopausal woman.

Menopause feels like the world is giving me nutrients back. Like both my body and my soul have been thanked for their hard work and given emeritus status and a big budget to simply explore.

I dont feel wistful about this. With preteen children, my brain has long moved past childbearing years. But its surprising that my body followed, wrapping it all up far sooner than I expected. The average age for menopause is about 52, so reaching menopause between the ages of 40 and 45 is considered early menopause .

But when hot flashes found me last year, I had a feeling I was on a different course than most other women my age. My periods had been erratic since my early 40s. Other things were happening, too. My sex drive was often lackluster, my moods were more noticeable and something unsettling was happening around my midsection.

My doctor first confirmed it wasnt a problem with my thyroid. Then she tested the levels of my follicle-stimulating hormone. While not a perfect indicator, the test suggested I was well on my way through the transition.

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At What Age Do Most Women Reach Menopause

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The medical definition of menopause is no menstrual bleeding for a year, according to Lauren Streicher, MD, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology and the medical director of the Northwestern Center for Menopause and the Northwestern Center for Sexual Medicine in Chicago.

Most women experience menopause between age 40 and 58, and the average age at menopause is 51, according to the North American Menopause Society.

Many women are surprised when they go through menopause in their forties because they think theyre too young, but its not unusual, says Dr. Streicher.

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How Is Premature Menopause Treated

The symptoms and health risks of premature menopause, as well as the emotional issues that may result from it, can be managed with the methods similar to those used for natural menopause. Women dealing with infertility that is brought on by premature menopause may want to discuss their options with their doctor or with a reproductive specialist.

What Are The Stages

The process happens slowly over three stages:

Perimenopause. Your cycles will become irregular, but they havenât stopped. Most women hit this stage around age 47. Even though you might notice symptoms like hot flashes, you can still get pregnant.

Menopause. This is when youâll have your final menstrual period. You wonât know for sure itâs happened until youâve gone a year without one. Hot flashes, vaginal dryness, sleep problems, and other symptoms are common in this stage.

Postmenopause. This begins when you hit the year mark from your final period. Once that happens, youâll be referred to as postmenopausal for the rest of your life. Keep in mind that after more than 1 year of no menstrual periods due to menopause, vaginal bleeding isn’t normal, so tell your doctor if you have any ASAP.

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A Word On Perimenopause

Medically, menopauseis defined as a time when a woman has not had her menstrual period for at least12 consecutive months . The period before menopause, when you beginnoticing signs of hormonal changes, is defined as perimenopause. During thisphase, the ovaries gradually produce lesser estrogen, and your periods may movebecome farther apart from each other. On the other hand, some women may noticeirregular periods that come closer together and do not follow their previouspattern of being 25-40 days apart. To put it simply, when you experienceperimenopause, your periods become difficult to predict. You may alsoexperience heavier or lighter flow, or notice more blood clots duringperimenopause.

Menopause will kick in when your ovaries produce so little estrogen than it no longer leads to the release of a healthy egg from your ovaries, to trigger menstruation after 14-16 days. Remember, if your last period was less than a year ago, you are not fully menopausal yet, ;and could still become pregnant. We discuss the various symptoms of perimenopause in a different article, so give that a read too.

What Are The Symptoms Of Premature Menopause

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Symptoms of premature menopause are often the same as those experienced by women undergoing natural menopause and may include:

  • Irregular or missed periods
  • Periods that are heavier or lighter than usual
  • Hot flashes

These symptoms are a sign that the ovaries are producing less estrogen.

Along with the above symptoms, some women may experience:

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