Myth #1 | Menopausal Discomforts Don’t Start until Your Period Stops
Hormone changes can begin as early as the late 30s or early 40s. Many women begin to experience night sweats, hot flashes, insomnia, anxiety, mood swings, headaches, changes in sex drive and changes in the menstrual cycle long before their periods stop.
Myth #2 | Hot Flashes Are Due to Low Estrogen Levels
Hot flashes can occur in women with high estrogen levels (during pregnancy) or with fluctuating estrogen levels. Other triggers include low progesterone, low testosterone, high follicle-stimulating hormones, surges of luteinizing hormones, increased cortisol and low beta-endorphins and antioxidants.
Myth #3 | Low Sex Drive Is a Normal Part of Aging
Many perimenopausal and menopausal women experience lower sex drive, but others find their sexual appetite increases with age. Low or high estrogen, low progesterone and low testosterone levels may contribute to a decreased sex drive, while stress, life changes and illness can also be factors.
Myth #4 | Menopause Means Hot Flashes
Hot flashes are a common discomfort in menopause, but they are neither universal nor the only health concern. Some women never experience hot flashes but may experience anxiety, depression, foggy thinking, headaches, insomnia, weight gain, water retention and vaginal dryness.