How Menopause Affects Your Mental Health

Though menopause is a natural progression in a woman’s life, the symptoms — which are caused by changing hormone levels at the end of a woman’s reproductive years — can feel completely unnatural. The symptoms can include hot flashes, sleep issues, thinning hair, and other physical symptoms. Unfortunately, menopause can also lead to emotional symptoms.

The good news is that there are a variety of treatments that can provide relief for a range of menopausal symptoms. In this blog, the menopause specialists at Southeast Urogyn discuss how menopause can affect your mental health and what you can do about it.

Emotional effects

You may not be fully in menopause when mood changes begin. Changes can begin during perimenopause, the period leading up to menopause. In this period, hormonal changes can begin taking place even though you’re still fertile. 

Some of the mental effects that can accompany the changing hormone levels of perimenopause and menopause include:

Most women reach menopause in their 50s, but it can occur as early as the 30s or as late as the 60s.

Coping with the mental effects of menopause

A number of things can help rebalance your hormone levels. Eating well and exercising can help immensely, as can setting aside quiet time, which can help reduce tension and anxiety.

 

Staying connected with family, friends, and your community can also help. And while this may sometimes be challenging in the face of hormonal mood effects, getting a sense of connection usually makes the effort worth it. 

Indulging in your favorite creative outlets can also help by creating a positive sense of achievement, which can help counter negative moods.

Furthermore, you should talk to your doctor about limiting the use of alcohol and tranquilizing medications, which can aggravate emotional issues.

Looking ahead

Many symptoms of menopause can pass with time. For instance, you may find that memory issues and lack of concentration that can appear during perimenopause may pass after you reach menopause. This could be the case with other mental health issues as well. 

However, there’s no way to know if symptoms will pass, and for some women, the mental effects can get worse if not treated. Estrogen has a protective effect against some forms of mental illness, so losing this protection when ovaries stop manufacturing it can cause problems to increase.

The best way to safely navigate through all the effects of menopause is by partnering with the experienced urogynecologists at Southeast Urogyn. To learn more, book an appointment over the phone today.

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