How to recognize and treat perimenopause and menopause symptoms

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Women who have experienced perinatal depression or premenstrual dysphoric disorder, a severe form of PMS, are at a higher risk for developing depression around menopause. Photo: Pexels


(Dani Blum/ The New York Times) — Many women don’t know what to expect during perimenopause, which is the time period — often marked by distressing changes in the body — that leads up to menopause, or the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle and childbearing years. Those changes can come as a shock, so we broke down the signs, causes and treatment options for five common symptoms.

“When it comes to hot flashes, most women will report a heat sensation that starts in their head and moves down their body,” said Dr. Nanette Santoro, a professor in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Colorado who researches symptoms of perimenopause and menopause.

That’s often followed by a cold sensation, she said, as the blood vessels in the body dilate and then rapidly lose heat. Hot flashes typically last between one and five minutes and can come on in both perimenopause and menopause. (…)

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