Friday, August 31, 2007

Menopause and Mood Swings

Menopause equals mood swings. You know, where the slightest request from your husband can cause you to go off. Or perhaps the cries of your child for a new Playstation game makes you lose it. Mood swings, which can trigger the sudden onset of crying, play a significant role in the menopause game and are often one of the first things women notices that causes her to suspect perimenopause. Characteristics of menopausal mood changes include extreme irritability, concentrated anxiety, depression, indifference (neutral feeling to both good and bad situations), and nervousness.

Menopause and mood swings work together because changes in hormonal levels (most notably, progesterone and estrogen levels) take place. For one, hormone levels may affect the level of serotonin (the emotional chemical) in the brain, causing depressive symptoms. Women often times feel insecure and irrelevant about themselves and their current roles, contributing more to feelings of worthlessness.

Other factors that trigger mood swings in menopause sufferers are the symptoms they face. Tinnitus (whooshing and ringing sensations in the ear due to nerve damage as a result of aging & hearing loss), incontinence (abnormal bladder behavior), and hot flashes also add on to the overall crankiness a menopausal woman can face. And of course, low levels of serotonin, and lack of progesterone production that relieve stress levels, can lead to the sudden onset of crying a definite disadvantage to any woman under this condition.

Mood swings can be drastically reduced by following a course of action such as a weekly exercise regimen. Exercise, specifically meditation and yoga, has been proven to relieve mood swings. Besides, it is the ultimate anti-aging activity women who exercise well into their sixties report looking and feeling younger. Another objective is to have a steady social support group to turn to. Menopause sufferers will find soothing words by their family and friends a positive contributor to their overall well-being.

The third course of action is to follow the right diet. Caffeine loaded drinks like coffee and soda will not work for you: it will only excite you leading to restless sleep making you cranky throughout the night. Drink certain teas that increase serotonin levels in the brain, like passionflower and chamomile, will also relax and provide for blissful sleep.

Grab the milk bottle in the refrigerator and warm it up tryptophan, a component found in warm milk, is known to increase serotonin in the brain as well. A multivitamin and mineral supplement may also help load your body with the right nutrients, balancing things out. So, avoid menopause mayhem and eliminate mood swings and the sudden onset of crying by following the above advice feel refreshed mentally and emotionally for a better day.

Cathy Taylor is a marketing consultant with over 25 years experience. She specializes in internet marketing, strategy and plan development, as well as management of communications and public relations programs for small business sectors. She can be reached at Creative Communications: or by visiting www.menopauseinfo.orgor

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