Depression And Mood Changes
Numerous women across the globe may be afflicted by depression, sulkiness, excitability, tetchiness, panic attacks as well as nervousness just about the time when they reach menopause. In all probability, such symptoms are caused by hormonal changes as well as women’s reaction to the strains of life at this juncture.
Interestingly enough, several women in the Western countries, where youth-centric cultures are prevalent, endure such types of sensitive problems as their fertility and youthfulness or vivacity begin to weaken. On the contrary, such problems barely exist in the Eastern cultures where elderly women are held in high esteem and are valued very much.
Eating a healthy diet goes a long way in offering physical support to such women all through such hard times. In addition, keeping away from sugar, caffeine, alcohol as well as redundant medicines that may all exhaust the nervous system as well as deteriorate the body’s resistance to strain may also help in overcoming much of the problems.
At the same time, women approaching menopause ought to undertake lots of work-outs, especially aerobic exercise on a regular basis with a view to encourage the discharge of endorphins (substances akin to opiate) from the brain, as they provide a feeling of good health and happiness, besides raising the spirits. On the other hand, regular exercise enhances energy levels, promotes blood circulation and also helps the mind to unwind. Exercises also help to discharge pent up emotions, for instance, nervousness, anger and petulance.
It is important to note that menopause has the aptitude to set off various emotions, such as melancholy and incidents of depression in some women. It is believed that anywhere between 8 per cent and 15 per cent of women in menopausal stage experience several types of depression. In effect, most likely, menopause depression strikes during the perimenopause – the period that precedes menopause.
While menopause depression is a fact, there are numerous views regarding the causes of this condition. Nevertheless, various theories have been put forward regarding the reason why a large number of women in menopausal stage endure mood disorders.
According to one theory, the stress endured by women during menopause actually results in depression. If you observe closely you might find that most of your menopausal symptoms are just too problematic to be dealt with by yourself alone. Already you have to handle so many things – your family, relatives, friends, work and even finances, and now you have a major physical issue to deal with.
The physical change you are experiencing needs to be taken care of carefully and with some amount of dedication. It is said that menopause might simply be that precise straw which breaks the back of the camel, resulting in the commencement of depression or despair.
According to another conjecture, menopause depression is lined to varying hormone levels in the body. All through menopause, the levels of hormones, such as estrogen, progesterone and androgen are changing continuously. It is believed that these precise hormones are associated with the mood centers in our brain. While the levels of these hormones decline, particularly estrogen, you are likely to endure phases of unhappiness and despair. There are a number of women who endure an acute decline in their mood, which, in turn, causes depression.
Women who have a history of mood disorders face augmented risk of developing depression during their menopause. In fact, women who have been suffering from depression earlier, particularly when they were in their 20s, are more prone to the depression occurring again during their menopausal phase. Women who smoke, have young children or endure excessive stress and strain are also more prone to develop some type of depression during their menopause.
In case you are enduring menopause depression, it is essential that you seek assistance right away. Remember that you do not have to endure this problem all by yourself.
There are several alternatives at hand which might help you to lessen your symptoms as well as assist you in bringing back all the pleasures and joys of your life once again. In the event of you mulling over to commit suicide, you are advised to visit a hospital right now and get yourself treated. Be sure that things will always improve and you will start feeling better again. It is a fact that life can begin anew even after you enter the menopausal phase.
There is a lot of debate raging over mood swings experienced by many women during their menopause. While no one is certain regarding the reason for such mood swings during menopause, by and large it has been accepted that the emotional tumult experienced by women during this period is somewhat attributable to fluctuating hormone levels.
It may be noted that when you enter the menopause phase, your body does not produce any eggs for being fertilized any longer. Consequently, your body also discontinues producing hormones that activate ovulation as well as menstruation. Slowly, but surely, your menstruation periods and ovulation become further irregular, which makes your hormones pass through an inconsistent twirl.
Such continuously varying levels of progesterone, estrogen as well as androgens have a specific influence on your mental condition. In effect, the hormones mentioned here regulate the serotonin levels in the brain – serotonin is the chemical which manoeuvres your mood. When the levels of serotonin decline, you mood will also drop. And when the level of serotonin increases, it lifts your mood. Nevertheless, there are many who are of the belief that mood swings occurring during menopause are basically due to the severe symptoms related to early menopause.
In all probability, you must have experienced sweaty hot flashes, extreme exhaustion and severe insomnia earlier. Remember, these are symptoms which may leave you fatigued, grouchy as well as tetchy further than what you think. And the fact remains that exhaustion has a direct link with irritation and crankiness. The more you are exhausted, the more you will feel that those small things hassle you.
In case of several women, the symptoms of menopause may prove to be very extreme, which makes their life further traumatic. Often, perimenopause occurs at extremely inconvenient times and this augments your mental stress/ strain and sentiments. Menopause has a tendency to correspond with the retirement age, children leaving home as well as other key events that usually change one’s life.
Supplements and herbs
There are a number of herbs and supplements that may help you to tackle the symptoms of menopause or provide you relief from much agony. For instance, you might be required to take supplements containing vitamin B complex, vitamin C and vitamin E in addition to calcium, magnesium as well as evening primrose oil to support your nervous system during menopause. In addition, you may also take a number of herbs on a regular basis to raise your spirits as well as balance your sensations. In effect, St. John’s wort is a particular herb which is effective in treating depression during menopause.
Other herbs, such as motherwort, skullcap, chamomile and lavender have a calming effect, whereas passion flower and valerian will facilitate in providing relief from severe anxiety and fright. Additionally, Bach Flower Remedies are also highly effective in dealing with the problems associated with menopause.
Here are descriptions of a few herbs that are helpful in alleviating the problems associated with menopause.
This herb sustains the pituitary glands and decreases excessive fluid retention by the body. It is generally used by the Native Americans.
Dong Quai or Angelica sinensis
This herb is frequently considered to be the female counterpart of the Chinese herb ginseng and it helps to ease vaginal dehydration, lessening occurrences of hot flashes and also controls the menstrual periods.
Dandelion possesses detoxifying attributes and, hence, it provides support to the liver in getting rid of the ‘old’ hormones and toxic substances accumulated in our body. In addition, this herb also helps to lessen fluid retention by the body.
Evening primrose oil
It may be noted that this natural oil forms a rich supply of gamma-linoleic acid and helps to promote healthy skin. In addition, evening primrose oil also facilitates in balancing the hormones and also reducing PMT (premenstrual tension) and menstrual anxiety.
Red clover forms a rich/ profuse resource of phyto-oestrogens.
This herb helps to maintain hormonal balance and also possesses anti-spasmodic properties, which are helpful in providing relief from pain endured by women during their menstruation cycles as well as ease the muscle/ joint problems.
This herb has the potential to decrease the body temperature and hence, it is effective in providing relief from hot flashes as well as nigh sweats.
Aromatherapy is one of the most suitable home remedies for menopausal symptoms. Aromatherapy is natural, safe and does not attack the adjacent tissues. If you opt for aromatherapy, there is no need to visit a doctor for a prescription and neither do you require remembering when you have to take a pill. When you have stored all the essential oils need for aromatherapy in your cupboard at home, they will remain there and you can use them whenever it is necessary.
Clary sage is considered to be among the most excellent essential oils to deal with menopausal symptoms. The essential oil of clary sage is obtained by steam-distilling the leaves of the European herb and it deals with several of the most painful and horrid symptoms of menopause. In effect, clary sage is an estrogenic herb, which denoted that is possesses the same properties of the estrogen hormone and also works in a similar manner in the human body. This essential oil offers several health benefits and some of them are mentioned below.
Clary sage essential oil helps in cell regeneration and, thereby, diminishes wrinkles. In addition, it also facilitates in maintaining hormonal balance, which, in turn, reduces occurrences of mood swings. As clary sage essential oil possesses aphrodisiac attributes, it is effective in invigorating the lost libido or sexual drive. Moreover, this essential oil is also a relaxant and helps to unwind the body and mind, thereby providing relief from nervousness and anxiety.
In addition to clary sage essential oil, there is a number of other essential oils that are especially effective in tackling the problems related to menopause. Some of these essential oils include Roman chamomile, lavender and geranium, which are all known for their efficacy in stabilizing the mood as well as their relaxing qualities. Besides, the essential oil obtained from peppermint is effective in providing relief from pain, orange essential oil is useful in treating nausea and basil or rosemary essential oils are useful in restoring energy when menopausal women begin to feel exhausted.
It may be mentioned that there are several effectual methods to apply these essential oils. Having decided on the precise essential oil that is suitable for you and your symptoms you may apply the oil in different ways. One of the favourite application methods, particularly when you are treating insomnia, nervousness or tetchiness, is to add five to seven drops in total (in effect, a few drops of all of the many different essential oils) in a hot bath.
When you apply the essential oils using this method, you are actually opening the pores on the skin surface and letting the oils enter your bloodstream via the skin. In addition, inhaling the essential oils in the steam that comes off the bath water also helps in alleviating the menopause symptoms.
Here are some proposed essential oils for relief of menopausal symptoms. You can make a massage oil, use in the bath, or disperse.
Emotional ups and downs
- clary sage
- Grounding and balancing essential oils such as patchouli or soothing essential oils such as lavender
- clary sage
- An energizing essential oil such as coriander or ginger
Additional things you may do
In addition to taking conventional medications, herbs and supplements as well as using aromatherapy, you may do several other things that will help to alleviate the brutal symptoms of menopause. Specially speaking to other women, especially women who have already experience the symptoms of menopause may prove to be of immense support.
In addition, there might be a self-help group in your neighbourhood where you may articulate emotions and feelings. In such cases, it is imperative that you speak out; people listen as well as understand you and the problems you are undergoing. This is important to obtain the support you actually ought to have or you deserve. In addition, these things are of great importance because they will help you to identify that you are not irrational or fixated since you yourself feel that way.
You may also opt for counselling, meditation, yoga, exercises that help you to unwind as all these would facilitate in tackling the problems you are enduring. Make an effort to release your negative feeling and fear, to identify the worth of your understanding/ knowledge and also to recover your due self-esteem, confidence and power.
It may be mentioned here that a comparatively new form of treatment called estrogen therapy is also effective for menopausal women suffering from depression. This therapy works on the hypothesis that diminished estrogen levels have a negative influence on the mood on an individual. In addition, estrogen supplements may also facilitate in spectacularly revitalizing your mood.
Findings of a study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology says that as many as 80 per cent of women in their menopausal phase have claimed an encouraging change in their mood after they took oral dosages of estrogen in the form of supplements.
Other beneficial herbs