Are Irregular Periods a Symptom of Perimenopause?
You may get too many periods. You may get too few. You may skip them. The bleeding may become heavier, or it can become lighter.
If you suspect you may be perimenopausal, keep track of your periods. Keep a record of when you are having your periods and what your symptoms are, so when you visit your clinician you can discuss the changes using actual dates.
If you are troubled by irregular periods, you can discuss the option of low dose birth control pills. This can help with regulation, with excessive flow, and also with contraception.
One of the issues of which you should be aware is that even in perimenopause you can still become pregnant and since your periods are not regular you have an increased risk of unintended pregnancy. Birth control is still necessary as long as you continue to ovulate, even if you are irregular.
Menopause is a normal and natural part of a womans life. Arm yourself with knowledge, build a strong relationship with your clinician and manage your menopause empowered.
Wendy Klein, M.D., is co-author of the book The Menopause Makeover and a national leader in womens health. She is Associate Professor Emeritus of Medicine, Obstetrics & Gynecology at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine.
Staness Jonekos is an advocate for women's health, wellness and empowerment as well as an award-winning television writer, producer and director.