Re: menopause or normal? PLease any BTDT? or advice?
Welcome to the forum!
What you're experiencing could be early menopause. I'd consider that unlikely, given your age and the fact that you're nursing and that your period has just returned. It could be a normal fluctuation of your fertile pattern related to breastfeeding- many moms find that their first few postpartum cycles are very different from their pre-baby norm, lasting longer or shorter than pre-baby, with flow that is heavier or lighter than pre-baby. And the average time until return of fertility in nursing moms is actually around 15.5 months, so you're probably worrying a little bit ahead of schedule. It could also be a result of hormonal contraception, if you happen to be using it- absent or scanty menses are one of hormonal birth control's most common side-effects. And you could even be pregnant- that's probably the most common explanation for absent menstrual periods!
If I were you, my first course of action would be to take a pregnancy test. The second thing I would do would be to buy a copy of Toni Weschler's book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" and use that to start charting things like basal body temperature, cervical mucus, and other fertility signs. This is great data to have to bring in to your midwife or gynecologist. And seeing the midwife or gynecologist is the third thing I would do, in your shoes. I'd want to do more than the standard "Pap smear and see you next year" visit. I'd want to discuss exactly what I had been seeing over the past year, show off my charts, and discuss the hot flashes and anxiety you say you've been experiencing. I personally would also insist on a test for thyroid function, since thyroid issues are extremely common in women after they have a baby and can cause everything you mention: anxiety, irregular or absent menses, and hot flashes (or, more generally, heat/cold intolerance). They also can cause a variety of other symptoms, so you might want to do a google search on "postpartum thyroiditis" and see if anything matches up.
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