woman with hot flashes, perimenopause, menopause, hormones

15 Signs of Perimenopause

Perimenopause is a natural transition – a life stage all menstruating women will face. It happens to us all,
but we don’t discuss it as much as we should! Knowledge is power – the more we know about our
bodies and the changes we face, the better equipped we’ll be to minimize symptoms of perimenopause.
So how do you know when it’s starting for you?

woman with hot flashes, perimenopause, menopause, hormones

Symptoms of Perimenopause
The symptoms of perimenopause are varied and different for every woman. Many women begin the
transition in their 40s, while others start as early as 30. The stage will last months for some, while ot
will take years to reach menopause officially.
The intensity of the symptoms also varies, from slightly bothersome to negatively affecting the quality of
life. Know that you don’t need to suffer! Many life changes, supplements, and treatments are available
to make the transition smoother.

15 signs that can signal perimenopause:

  • Changing periods – One of the most significant indicators of perimenopause is changing periods. Some women will have heavier flow, skip periods, or have irregular cycles. See one of my previous blog posts about Perfect Periods here
  • Hot flashes & night sweats – Many women are hit with heat waves, flushing and sweating, ranging from slight warmth to waking up dripping in sweat.
  • Body & weight changes – Less estrogen can lead to muscle loss and make it challenging to lose weight.
  • Mood changes – Fluctuating hormones can lead to feelings of sadness and irritability. Add insomnia, hot flashes, and heavy periods to that, and who wouldn’t feel upset?
  • Hair growth in odd places – Do you get that one long hair you have to pluck from your chin? With less estrogen and progesterone in your system, androgens rise, leading to hair in unusual places like your face, chest and back.
  • Insomnia – Progesterone affects our sleep, so declining levels can lead to insomnia. Hot flashes, night sweats and anxiety can also wake you up in the middle of the night.
  • Vaginal dryness & painful intercourse – Dropping estrogen levels can lead to thinner, drier vaginal tissue, causing uncomfortable intercourse and declining sexual desire.
  • Fatigue – Feeling drained during the day is another common symptom of perimenopause (although there may be other explanations as well).
  • Body odour changes – Another fun one! Some women report increased body odour as hormones
    fluctuate, thanks to increased testosterone levels.
  • Brittle nails & thinning hair – Estrogen helps our skin and hair retain moisture and signals our bodies to make collagen. When levels drop, it can lead to dry, brittle nails and thinning hair.
  • Migraines – During perimenopause, hormone levels fluctuate intensely, leading to migraines. The good news? Many women find that once they enter menopause, they have fewer migraines!
  • Anxiety & depression – The same hormones that control your cycle also prevent the release of
    serotonin. When those levels fall, it can increase sadness, anxiety, and clinical depression.
  • Urinary changes – Hormonal changes also affect the muscles in your pelvic region. If these weaken, you may have issues with incontinence.
  • Acne & skin changes – Changes and hormonal imbalances mess with our skin’s natural defences, causing problems such as acne, dry skin, rosacea and eczema.

The symptoms of perimenopause don’t sound fun, but you don’t have to suffer! Just because something
is considered ‘normal’ does not mean it is ideal. Underlying issues such as thyroid problems, hormone
imbalance, or insulin resistance can make symptoms worse than they need to be. The more you know
about your body and the changes happening, the better you’ll be able to minimize signs of

If you are struggling with any of these signs, please see your health care provider. If you are looking to work with Dr. Henna, ND for these issues, you can book your initial visit here

Period cramps common sign of hormonal imbalance

Twelve Common Signs of Hormonal Imbalance in Women

Hormones play an essential role within our bodies – subsequently, a slight hormonal imbalance can throw off your system, leading to unwanted symptoms and side effects. 

Produced by the glands in our endocrine system, hormones act like little messengers. They relay instructions that tell your body what to do and when to do it. You don’t want them playing a game of broken telephone! 

Hormones and The Role They Play in Our Bodies 

You may be familiar with estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone, but our bodies have over 50 different hormones. 

They are essential communicators for reproduction, metabolism, growth, mood regulation, our sleep-wake cycle, and more. Often, these processes need a chain reaction of many hormones working together. If one is lacking, it can throw off the whole process. 

Look at your hormones as part of a recipe – too little or too much of one ingredient will mess with the results! 

12 Common Signs of Hormone Imbalance in Women 


Thought you left acne in your teenage years? If it’s making an unwanted comeback, you might blame excess androgens. Adult acne related to hormonal shifts is often centred on your lower face, around your jawline and cheeks.


Migraines are intense headaches, often on one side of your head, that can also include sensitivity to light, nausea, fatigue, or dizziness. Strong fluctuations of estrogen usually cause hormone-related migraines.  

Excessive growth or hair loss. 

Thinning hair and excessive facial hair growth are both signs of a hormonal imbalance. It is often the result of high androgen levels (male hormones). 

Low sex drive. 

While dips in libido are natural, a continual lack of interest in sex can signify a hormonal imbalance, often related to low estrogen levels. 

Unexplained weight changes.

Sudden weight gain or loss not associated with any lifestyle or health issues can be related to imbalanced hormone levels due to thyroid issues. 

Night sweats.

Waking up in the middle of the night needing to change your clothes is no fun! Low or fluctuating estrogen levels may be to blame if you have frequent night sweats. 


It’s normal to feel tired now and then when life is busy! But overwhelming fatigue that consistently disrupts your everyday life could signify excess progesterone or thyroid issues. 


On the flip side, if you toss and turn and can’t seem to fall asleep at night or fall asleep but wake up often, it could signal low progesterone. 

Vaginal dryness.

Vaginal dryness tends to happen when entering menopause. But if you are younger and suffering from this symptom, it could mean your estrogen levels are too low. 

Memory issues. 

If you once had an excellent memory but now struggle to find your keys, your memory issues might be attributed to low estrogen levels. 

Irregular Periods. 

 If you are skipping periods, have an irregular cycle, or have excruciating cramping, that’s a sign that something is amiss! The ideal period shouldn’t disrupt your life – either low progesterone or imbalanced estrogen may be to blame. 


Infertility is a heart-breaking issue that can signal a hormone imbalance. Fortunately, if the problem stems from hormones, there are treatments available that can help you conceive and carry a healthy baby. 

Hormones are small but mighty! They play essential roles within our bodies. Evidently, if you suffer from one of these common signs of hormone imbalance, see your naturopathic doctor for testing. It won’t just go away on its own – you need to find and treat the root cause to feel your absolute best! If you have questions about your hormones, please reach out – I’d love to chat!