Are My Mood Swings from Stress or Menopause?
Hormones are small but very smart chemical messengers that are capable of influencing physical, emotional, sexual and reproductive aspects of our lives. Mild changes in the secretion of these hormones can produce a wide array of disturbances if poorly managed over a long period of time. This is because most hormones follow a “feedback-regulation system” in which changes in the production of one hormone may impact the synthetic functions of other endocrine hormones and neurotransmitters.
Most women are under the misconception that the hormonal levels decline abruptly as soon as they reach menopause; which is not true. The secretion and metabolism of different hormones begins to deteriorate as early as age 30, long before the onset of menopausal symptoms. So if you are approaching natural menopause, be prepared for the craziest roller coaster of your life.
Mood swings and Menopause – are they related?
Menopause is the normal and natural hormonal transition that affects a woman’s capacity to procreate or get pregnant. Decline in the rate of estrogen secretion is the hallmark of menopause and can present mood swings. The prevalence of mood swings in menopause is as high as 50 to 65%.
Besides estrogen metabolism changes, moods swings are also a result of:
- Serotonin imbalance: Based on latest medical research, estrogen has a very strong influence on the serotonin activity. Low estrogen levels are associated with decreased sensitivity of serotonin receptors and low production of this mood boosting neurotransmitter.
- Menopausal symptoms: Besides hormonal and chemical aberrations, it has also been observed that most females develop mood swings due to other menopausal symptoms such as low energy levels, insomnia, weight gain, hot flashes, night sweats, palpitations and migraines.
If mood swings are due to other menopausal symptoms, it is highly recommended to opt for bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to alleviate mood swings.
What are some classic symptoms of mood swings?
According to latest medical research, mood swings is an umbrella term that include these symptoms:
- Unexplained emotional outbursts
- Depression that may range from transient and infrequent blues or sadness to suicidal ideation
- Frequent and unprovoked mood changes
- Substantial decrease in tolerance and patience
- Irritability, aggression, high stress levels
- Anxiety and nervousness
- Lack of motivation
Are all women at risk of developing mood swings after menopause?
A lot of women are very interested in knowing if they are going to develop mood swings after the menopause. Experts believe that some genetic as well as environmental factors can play a very strong role in the pathogenesis of menopausal mood swings.
How should you manage menopausal mood swings?
Mood swings and abnormal changes in behavior are often overlooked by women; but it is important to mention that trivial mood changes can lead t
- Severe depression
- Bipolar disorders
- Anxiety disorder (social phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder, panic disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder etc.)
According to a new study published in Archives of General Psychiatrs, experts suggested that menopausal hormonal changes aggravates the risk of depression up to 4-times in women with no history of depression. The prevalence is even higher in females with history of preexisting mental health issues. Report also suggested that most cases of menopausal depression presents with mood swings (irritability, anger management issues and sadness).
If you are experiencing menopausal mood swings, it is highly recommended to book an appointment to discuss treatment options like bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, lifestyle modification and other regimens.
Call Renew Health and Wellness today for a complete, no-cost hormone analysis.
Richmond (800-656-8286) or St. Louis (800-815-8456)