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8 subtle signs of menopause women tend to overlook

Beyond hot flashes and mood swings, there are quiet signs like joint pains and skin and hair alterations that indicate the onset of menopause

Transitioning through menopause can be easy if you recognise its signs early and prepare for it.
Transitioning through menopause can be easy if you recognise its signs early and prepare for it. (Pexels/RDNE Stock Project)

Menopause is a natural biological process that indicates the end of a woman's reproductive years. While many women are familiar with common symptoms like hot flashes and mood swings, there is a spectrum of subtler signs that often go unnoticed. Recognizing these subtle indicators is a key for a smoother transition through this transformative phase of life. 

Also read: How to stop menopause from derailing careers

Shifts in energy levels: Subtle fatigue and shifts in strength levels might also show up as early indicators of menopause, reflecting the hormonal adjustments happening inside the body.

Sleep disturbances: Sleep disturbances, which include insomnia or disrupted sleep patterns, can be experienced during the duration of menopause due to hormonal fluctuations affecting the sleep cycle.

Mood changes beyond irritability: Beyond irritability, menopause may additionally result in nuanced mood changes, such as heightened sensitivity or shifts in emotional resilience, highlighting the multifaceted effect on mental well-being.

Cognitive fog and memory challenges: Cognitive fog and memory challenges are prevalent cognitive symptoms linked to menopause, marked by instances of forgetfulness and struggles with concentration. These issues arise due to hormonal shifts impacting cognitive functions.

Skin and hair alterations: Menopause frequently introduces changes in skin elasticity, increased dryness, and changes in hair texture, reflecting the hormonal effects of the body's dermal makeup.

Weight management struggles: Weight management struggles may be connected to hormonal changes all through menopause, contributing to challenges in maintaining a healthy weight and body composition.

Changes in libido: During menopause, a decline in estrogen levels can lead to decreased blood flow to the pelvic region, contributing to a reduction in libido. Hormonal fluctuations further influence intimacy during this transitional phase.

Joint pain and muscle aches: Joint ache and muscle aches may additionally result from the hormonal imbalances affecting connective tissues, emphasizing the wider physiological consequences of menopause at the musculoskeletal mechanism of the body.

Navigating menopause calls for a holistic understanding of its varied manifestations. By being aware of these subtle signs, women can proactively deal with the challenges posed by this transitional phase. Recognizing the nuances of menopausal symptoms empowers women to make informed choices, fostering a positive and healthy journey through this natural stage of life.

Dr. Nandita Palshetkar is an obstetrician, gynaecologist, director of Bloom IVF India and President o the IVF Society of India (ISAR). 

Also read: The emerging trend of menopause wellness retreats



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