A Answers (4)
Mehmet Oz, MD, Cardiology, answeredDuring perimenopause a woman's body goes through many physical changes. These changes may be subtle at first because the amount of estrogen the body is making is erratic and can fluctuate widely from day to day and hour to hour. It’s different for everyone. You may skip a period or two, or your menstrual flow might get heavier or lighter. Some women stop menstruating suddenly. You may feel a few hot flashes or night sweats, and you may notice your vagina feels dryer or more irritated. Behind the scenes your bones may be losing density, which is a risk factor for osteoporosis. It is important to note that if you are perimenopausal you may still be producing eggs, which means you could become pregnant.
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI) answered
The hormonal changes of perimenopause affect your body in several ways, mostly caused by the fact that at a certain age, the ovaries stop generating two hormones called estrogen and progesterone. As the level of these hormones in your body goes down, you experience physical and emotional side effects. Most noticeably, your periods become irregular; when they have stopped completely for one year, you are in menopause. You may also have sleep problems, experience hot flashes, or become irritable or nervous.
Marjorie Nolan Cohn, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
The onset of perimenopause and eventually menopause itself signal great changes in your physical and emotional life. Though some women experience few symptoms, if you’re like the vast majority, you may have noticed the incremental shifts that come on for months and years before menopause sets in. These physical changes are often accompanied by psychological ones as you confront the realities of aging and try to deal with the mood shifts that often come along with hormonal change and hormonal imbalance. Because hormones are off kilter, you may be more susceptible to depression, fatigue, moodiness, and food cravings. Unfortunately, these side effects are some of the more potent triggers for binge eating and/or other types of emotional or compulsive eating which lead to weight gain and more depression.
Once perimenopause has begun, you may experience a change in your menstrual cycle, such as a difference in how far apart they are or lighter or heavier flow, hot flashes, vaginal dryness, urinary tract problems, headaches, night sweats, insomnia, tiredness, and/or weight gain. Many women also experience a lack of energy. These are related to the changing levels of hormones in your body, which have effects on the blood vessels and circulatory system, and reproductive tissues.