The menopausal experience is unique to each woman.Some ladies meet it with sorrow at the loss of fertility, while others are thrilled to be done with difficult and painful periods. Sometimes being armed with a few facts can make this transition easier for individual women. Let’s take a look at some menopause symptoms and how widely they can be experienced.
Nearly everyone knows women going through menopause experience hot flashes. There’s always the office joke about one of the female workers living in front of a fan, even with the air conditioner blowing full force. Although most women do experience hot flashes, the severity of them can vary widely. Some women feel a full-body, engulfing flush of heat, followed by profuse sweating. This experience can last just a few seconds or several minutes, making it difficult for the woman to concentrate or function until she cools off. Other women, especially those who up until now have felt cold all their lives, experience more of an overall warming as opposed to a debilitating sense of excessive heat.
Another symptom that ranks right up with hot flashes for disrupting a woman’s daily life is night sweats. Some menopausal women wake during the night completely drenched with sweat and have to get up and change the sheets. Other women go through hot and cold cycles, alternating between shivering under the covers and then throwing them off as fast as possible. These women may not experience night sweats, but their rhythm of sleep is just as disrupted. Let’s face it – women going through this cessation of monthly periods just don’t get adequate sleep. Consequently, they feel tired all the time which only exacerbates feelings of irritability, crabbiness and being overwhelmed.
Many women do not realize heart palpitations are just another symptom of menopause. Even women who exercise faithfully and are generally very fit might feel their heart beating outrageously fast and hard in their throat when simply walking up a short flight of stairs. This can be one the more frightening symptoms of menopause, but not every women experiences it. Any woman feeling heart palpitations should definitely visit with her doctor to rule out other causes for the problem. However, it should be helpful and comforting for women to know this can be a relatively common experience.
Women are often mystified as to why they experience, and vocalize, excessive crabbiness. Others simply feel so tired and overwhelmed they don't have enough energy to be irritable. Many women going through menopause find they can deal with the hot flashes and other symptoms but are completely grieved when they lash out at those they cherish most. Fluctuating hormone levels are to blame for wreaking havoc with a woman’s emotional stability and energy during this time.
As estrogen levels continue to decline and eventually bottom out during menopause, these symptoms gradually recede as well allowing women to feel more energetic and regain their positive mental outlook.