When does menopause start?

Are you in it yet?

When Does Menopause Start?
This page may contain affiliate links. I am not a doctor, dietitian nor nutritionist and am not qualified to give medical advice. I merely share what has worked for me. I hope it can help you too x. This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of any condition. Please read the disclaimer for more info.

Menopause generally starts somewhere between 45 and 55 years of age when hormones begin to fluctuate. The average age of onset is 51. However, some women can reach this stage in their 30s and some in their 60s. The period leading into this stage of life is called Perimenopause and can start approximately 6 years earlier than Menopause is confirmed.

What age does the menopause start?

Have you found that you feel emotionally strange recently? Crying at anything and everything? Feeling incredibly irritated, especially at family members or your spouse? Battling with a feeling of overwhelming rage at little incidents? Maybe your periods have become a bit irregular? Maybe you are finding it harder to lose weight, especially in the belly area?

Have you started to put two and two together and wonder… Hmm. Is this the menopause? What age does the menopause start anyway? Am I old enough!

Don’t worry, you are not alone. Realising that it MAY be the Menopause behind these feelings and symptoms can be a shock but its good to figure out what is happening.

In general, most women head into Menopause in their 40s or 50s with the average age being 51 in the United States. Some women can hit menopause in their 30s and some in their 60’s so 51 is just the average. You may be different. 1 in 100 women experience menopause before they hit 40 but this is classed as premature menopause.


The Menopause is “officially” the day 12 months after your last menstrual cycle. Before that, you are going through Perimenopause. After that, you are Post Menopausal. So the crazy thing is that technically, Menopause actually only lasts ONE DAY! Wow. Who knew!

So you may actually begin to notice symptoms during Perimenopause as your hormones deviate from their steady cycles and begin to rise and dip. Perimenopause generally starts around 6 years before you finally hit Menopause. So when most people describe “going through Menopause” they are generally describing Perimenopause. Confusing!.

Please Note. I am not a doctor, nor am I qualified to give medical advice. I’m just sharing what has worked for me. Please see your own doctor before making any changes to your lifestyle or medical routine.

What are the first signs of Perimenopause?

Menopause and Perimenopause are natural stages of life that all women experience. There are a wide range of symptoms both mental and physical. However, not all women find the symptoms debilitating and some lucky women sail through menopause easily with few or minor symptoms.

Probably one of the first signs of Perimenopause is that your periods may become irregular. They may turn up at random times or be much lighter or much heavier, even if they ran like clockwork before.

When Does Menopause Start?

When Does Menopause Start? Are You In It Yet?

Classic Symptoms

You may start to experience some of the classic signs of Perimenopause including

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Sore or tender breasts
  • Loss of Libido
  • Fatigue and exhaustion
  • Brain fog
  • Vaginal Dryness

Emotional Symptoms

You may also find that you experience emotional symptoms. Around 75% of women report struggling with their emotions during Perimenopause & Menopause.

These symptoms may include

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Panic attacks
  • Feelings of extreme rage
  • Extreme irritability
  • Worsening pre-menstrual syndrome

These feelings can really upset your life, affecting relationships, work, sleep and your enjoyment of life. They can be hard to handle.

Weight Gain Symptoms

Uncontrollable weight gain, especially around the middle can also be one of the first signs that you are starting to enter Perimenopause.

Feel like your old self in 21 days


You may suddenly find it much harder to lose weight, and the weight you do put on gravitates to the belly area leaving you with an unflattering spare tyre around the middle.

I learnt a lot about how to balance my hormones in my research to improve my own health over the last 3 years. I have put all my information into my structured weight loss plan which is specifically designed for women around Menopause. The focus is on balancing your hormones which in turn will help with weight loss

The Belly Fat Solution – 14 Day Menopause Weight Loss Plan

The Holistic Way To Balance your Hormones, Lose Weight & Feel Great – in 14 days

If you need a holistic and structured weight loss plan that walks you through losing your Menopause Belly Fat this may help you. It’s designed specifically for women struggling with their weight at midlife… and exercise is optional!

You can read more about my Belly Fat Weight Loss Plan here

Belly Fat Solution Menopause Weight Loss Diet Plan

Begin Your Weight Loss Journey Today

Do periods stop suddenly with Menopause?

In general, for most women, periods don’t stop suddenly. They may become erratic, perhaps missing a period every few months. They may be lighter than normal and then tail off altogether. You may think they have finished only for them to put in a surprise appearance, usually when you least want them to!.

However, in some women, they CAN just stop abruptly and that’s normal too.

It’s important to know that ovulation may still be occurring, even if periods are few and far between. This means that there is still a chance that you could get pregnant so please make sure you keep up with a method of contraception until you are ABSOLUTELY sure you really have gone through menopause.

How many missed periods before menopause?

After you have missed 12 consecutive periods you have reached the magical day of Menopause. After this, you are classed as being Post Menopausal. 

It’s important to note that if you are definitely menopausal, and then suddenly have a period or bleed a few years later you must get this checked out by your doctor. It could be a sign of cancer so any bleeding after you have stopped must always be investigated.

What are the 34 Symptoms of Menopause?

As we have seen, Menopausal symptoms can begin years before your periods finally stop. They can last 4 years or more after you finally go through Menopause. For some unlucky women, they can go on for much longer.

A recent study looked at 110 women with an average age of 49. The researchers looked at the severity of the main symptoms of menopause.

The participants were asked to rate the severity of their most problematic symptoms which you can see in the table below.

Menopause Symptoms rated by severity
Insomnia and sleep problems94.5%
Brain fog and forgetfulness92%
Irritability, rage and mood problems87%
Night sweats85.5%
Hot flashes83%

If you are struggling with your sleep you might want to check out this post which offers some solutions to common menopausal sleep issues.


The symptoms of Menopause and Perimenopause blend together. Doctors have put together a comprehensive list of 34 symptoms of menopause. 

I wrote a detailed post which outlines each of the 34 symptoms in turn and makes some suggestions as to how best to deal with them. You can read the post below…


How long does menopause last?

Once you haven’t had a period for 12 months and are postmenopausal, you may find that some symptoms continue. Depressingly the symptoms may continue for an average of 4 or 5 years. 

The most common symptom to continue is hot flashes. Some women report hot flashes continuing for a long time. Despite this depressing news, there is light at the end of the tunnel. The symptoms generally decrease in intensity and frequency until they fade away altogether. 

Many women report a feeling of calm and serenity after the storm has passed.

How do you confirm menopause?

Follicle Stimulating Hormone {FSH} is the hormone that is generally measured to confirm menopause. If your FSH is consistently elevated to above 30 mIU/mL then a doctor may say that you are in Menopause, IF you have not had a period for a year.

FSH is a hormone produced in your pituitary gland. It stimulates the ovaries to produce eggs. When your ovaries stop working in Menopause, your FSH levels will go up.

However, the test only tells you if FSH is raised. It doesn’t tell you if you definitely are in Perimenopause or Menopause.

Is there a home test for menopause?

Yes, you can buy an FSH test to complete at home. A simple google search will find medical labs offering this test. However, there is a BIG WARNING on doing this test for yourself.

How accurate is this test? 

The test will tell you if FSH is raised. However, that doesn’t give you the full picture. As you head towards menopause your FSH levels may fluctuate wildly so the test may show different levels at different times. 

A doctor wouldn’t just rely on this test alone. They would use other tests and your medical history to get a fuller picture to make a diagnosis. So bear in mind that the test is not a definitive answer. 

Can I get through Menopause naturally?

If you have been questioning whether you are entering perimenopause I hope this post has given you a bit of a clearer picture.

You may be wondering if there are any natural solutions to help with menopausal symptoms? The good news is that women have navigated Menopause naturally for millennia and a range of natural solutions have developed.

You can download my FREE comprehensive ebook of natural solutions by clicking below.

Whatever stage of the journey of menopause you find yourself in, rest assured that you are not alone and that many things can be done to make your Menopausal transition an easier one.

Love and light


Love and light 

PS. If you need a few more ideas to help you deal with Menopause Symptoms, please download my FREE ebook of Natural Remedies using the form below. 

Natural Menopause Remedies ChecklistDownload the FREE NATURAL MENOPAUSE REMEDIES CHECKLIST

Over 60 Natural Supplements & Strategies to help with Menopause Symptoms.

including remedies for Hot Flashes | Night sweats | Low Libido | Hormone Headaches | Weight gain | Depression | Anxiety and many more…

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Menopause and Perimenopause can be a tricky time to pass through. I certainly had a turbulent journey. I learnt a lot from my intense battle. I rediscovered my Menopause Mojo and you can too. I truly believe that Menopause can be the start of the best part of your life. I am an Artist, Certified Transformation Life Coach, Holistic Health Coach, Hypnosis practitioner and woman's health researcher. NB. I am not a doctor or qualified to give medical advice. I merely share what has worked for me. I hope it can help you too. x