Signs You’re Entering Menopause

For women, the stages of life center around reproduction. Menopause is the stage of life that marks the end of a woman’s childbearing years. You officially reach menopause after going one full year without your period.

The average age of menopause in the United States is 52, according to the Office on Women’s Health. Though menopause has a definitive start date, the road leading up to it can be long and unpredictable. 

Here at Lena Speck Hopkins, MD, in Harlingen, Texas, we understand how menopause can affect your daily life. Our menopause expert, Dr. Speck Hopkins, wants to share some of the signs you should look for that may indicate you’re entering menopause. 

Menopause explained

You officially reach menopause when you stop having your period. This occurs because your ovaries no longer ovulate (release an egg each month), and they produce less estrogen and progesterone. 

Estrogen and progesterone are female hormones that play a major role in your reproductive health. 


Estrogen controls your menstrual cycle and keeps your reproductive organs healthy. It also protects your bones and helps keep blood cholesterol levels in check. 


Progesterone signals your body to create the endometrial tissue that lines your uterus in preparation for pregnancy. When you don’t get pregnant, your body sheds the uterine lining during menstruation. 

Signs you’re entering menopause

Menopause doesn’t happen all at one. Before you reach menopause, you go through a transitional period called perimenopause. 

Most women start the transition to menopause in their mid-to-late 40s. This transition usually lasts about four years. During perimenopause, your body may give you some hints that things are changing. 

Some of the signs and symptoms that you’re entering menopause include

These symptoms occur due to the fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone levels. Though hormonal changes may be the root cause of your symptoms, we don’t usually check hormone levels in women during perimenopause because levels fluctuate so much. 

A blood cholesterol level that’s higher than normal may also be a sign you’re entering menopause.

Managing your menopause 

Every woman’s menopause experience is different. Some women have no symptoms or their symptoms are mild, while others have severe symptoms that disrupt their daily lives.

However, no matter how menopause affects you, it’s important that you take good care of your health in the years leading up to menopause and the years after. 

To alleviate symptoms and improve health during menopause, we offer bioidentical hormone therapy with SottoPelle® hormone pellets. 

The pellets are custom-made to match your specific hormonal needs. We place a pellet under your skin and it releases a consistent dose to optimize your hormonal levels for long-term symptom relief.

In addition to helping you get through menopause with grace, our bioidentical hormone therapy may also protect your bone health and lower your risk of osteoporosis.

You may also benefit from nutrition supplements. We’re qualified health care providers for Pure Encapsulations® supplements, which are a line of nutrition supplements free of artificial ingredients and allergens. 

You may be expecting menopause, but you may not recognize the signs that it’s approaching. Let us help you stay on top of your health. Call our office today and schedule a consultation with our menopause specialist. 

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