Many women in the stages of peri-menopause and menopause feel depressed and irritable. Some researchers believe that the decrease in estrogen triggers changes in the brain, causing depression. Others think that supplementary symptoms you are having, such as sleep problems, hot flashes, night sweats and fatigue are the causes of these feelings.
Alternatively, it could be a blend of hormonal changes and symptoms. However, these symptoms can also be caused due to reasons unrelated to menopause, though menopause is the main cause of these symptoms in a woman. Mood changes and irritability may also be more common in women who have had difficulty with PMS.
Menopause and Irritability: Symptoms
The other factors that influence mood swings and irritability in menopausal women are difficulty with memory and attention span. Some women report difficulties with concentrating or remembering specific words. These women may stutter and stammer over a certain word, even though the word is on the tip of their tongue. Certain uneasiness resides at the back of the mind, causing thoughts to wander and curtails concentration.
A woman with attention-deficit disorder may first realize this and go for treatment when she reaches menopause. Declining estrogen levels have aggravated her ability to concentrate. Insomnia, better known as sleeplessness, is a common complaint from women in pre-menopause or menopause. Irritability during menopause may increase due to night sweats and disrupted sleep patterns.
This is a relative condition because impaired sleep can cause touchiness and depression and in turn, irritability and depression can impair sleep. Reduced sleep leads to tiredness and irritability during the day.
Menopause and Irritability: Depression
Feeling depressed during or before menopause and feeling negative about menopause and getting older, increases the stress, and can result in more severe menopause symptoms. If you start smoking and are not being physically active, unhappy in your relationship, or unemployed, or feel the biological clock ticking away – making you regretful that you cannot have children anymore- any of these situations could quite naturally lead to irritability when confronted with menopause. Timely and proper treatment can stem the problem, which could get very serious if left untreated.
Menopause and Irritability: How to Get Relief
There are countless ways to alleviate emotional symptoms related to menopause and irritability. Sometimes, talking to friends and family, or doing relaxation exercises eases the problem. However, if symptoms really disrupt your life, talk to your doctor about hormone replacement therapy or, if you are still menstruating, low-dose birth control pills are an option as are a newer alternative form of therapy called bio-identical hormones. Blues that linger and cause fatigue, sleep problems, trouble concentrating and lack of interest in sex may be a sign of a more serious type of depression.
Menopause and Irritability: Talk to Your Near and Dear Ones
First, speak to a professional about any emotional problems. Discussing your problems with anyone, a doctor, therapist, or friend, can often bring much needed relief. At this critical juncture in a woman’s life, supportive family and friends are even more necessary.
In some cases, your doctor might prescribe medication. Hormone Replacement Therapy – usually given to treat hot flashes and protect bones against osteoporosis, may work to relieve symptoms, but don’t forget to also explore bio-identical alternatives. Once the hot flashes and night sweats, go away, both sleep and moods are likely to be significantly improved.