Menopause is a normal, natural life event that all women experience. Most women experience menopause between the age 40 and 58. The average age is 51. Physical changes begin years before the final menstrual period. This transition phase is called perimenopause and may last for 4 to 8 years.

Common Physical Changes

Each woman’s experience of menopause is different. Many women report no physical changes during perimenopause except irregular menstrual periods that stop when menopause is reached. Other women experience symptoms of hot flashes, night sweats (heavy sweating from hot flashes at night, often disturbing sleep), and thinning and drying of vaginal tissue that can make sex painful. How severe these body changes are varies from woman to woman, but for the most part these changes are perfectly natural and normal.

Discussing your symptoms and concerns with your physician will provide optimal support in determining the treatment options available to you, based on your personal desires and your medical symptoms.

Common symptoms can include:

  • Breast changes
  • Body and muscle aches
  • Changes in sexual desires
  • Difficulties concentrating
  • Emotional fluctuations
  • Headaches
  • Hot flashes and night sweats
  • Insomnia
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Vaginal dryness

Treatments can include: