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Exploring The Connection: Menopause And The Heightened Risk Of Depression


By Abby blasiusPublished 12 months ago 6 min read

Menopause and mood disorders go hand in hand. Studies have shown that approximately 41% of postmenopausal women experience depression.

Knowing the signs of depression might help you get help and work out a treatment plan with a doctor.

This article will shed light on the correlation between menopause and melancholy, as well as the inequities in health care that have been linked to this natural transition.

A woman’s reproductive years cease with menopause, a natural biological process. It most commonly affects middle-aged women (45-55) but can arise at any age. Changes in physical and mental health are common during menopause because of the large drop in oestrogen and progesterone hormone levels.

Persistent melancholy, a loss of interest or pleasure in formerly enjoyable activities, changes in eating or sleep patterns, diminished energy, impaired concentration, and thoughts of worthlessness or guilt are all symptoms of depression. While men and women are equally susceptible to depression, women are twice as likely to develop depression as men, and the risk increases during particular life stages such as menopause.


i. Difficulty concentrating or making decisions

Concentration problems can show up in different ways and be caused by different things, like physical or mental conditions. Based on the research, there are some signs that may indicate difficulty in concentration. Some signs that it may be hard for you to pay attention,

You have trouble maintaining concentration and finding it difficult to keep your mind on a single job.

You put off starting or finishing things because you are easily sidetracked by other things or thoughts.

You always want to move or do something different, and you find it hard to sit still or do the same thing for a long time.

Even though you try to remember, you often forget important information, appointments, or deadlines.

Even though you spend a lot of time on a job, you have trouble making progress or getting what you want out of it.

ii. Feelings of worthlessness or guilt

Guilt is a normal human reaction to the realization that one has behaved immorally or acted unethically. Everyone has their own unique method of feeling guilty. Some possible indicators of guilt are:

You might be too hard on yourself and blame yourself too much for your actions or what you think are wrongdoings. This self-blame can be cruel and never-ending.

When you feel bad, you might want to stay away from people, places, or situations that remind you of what you did or how it turned out. To get away from feelings of guilt, you might avoid people or stay alone.

When you feel guilty, your mind tries to go back and replay the events or actions that made you feel guilty. You might think too much about what you did or wonder all the time what you could have done better.

Guilt can show up in the body in the form of things like loss of hunger, trouble sleeping, tiredness, headaches, or a general drop in physical health.

When someone feels sorry, they often want to make up for what they did or ask for forgiveness. You might feel like you need to say sorry, make things right, or find other ways to make up for what you think was done to you.

iii. Fatigue or loss of energy

The signs of feeling low on energy can differ from one person to another. However, some typical indicators include:

A feeling of being tired or worn out that doesn’t go away with rest or sleep. You may feel physically tired and like you don’t have the energy to do things.

You have a noticeable drop in motivation or drive to do chores or do things you usually enjoy. You might find it hard to get started on or finish even simple jobs.

Having trouble staying focused on chores or paying attention for long periods of time. You might feel like your mind is foggy, forget things, or have trouble taking in information.

Feeling slow or as though your body is going in slow motion. Things that used to be easy may now require more work and take longer to do.

Feeling easily upset, angry, or restless over small things that normally wouldn’t bother you. This could be because they are tired and don’t have the energy to deal with stresses.

iv. Sleep disturbances

Sleep problems can show up in different ways. Here are some symptoms and signs that are often linked to sleep problems.

Sleep problems include taking a long time to fall asleep, waking up a lot during the night, or waking up too early in the morning and not being able to go back to sleep.

Too sleepy or sleeping for too long, making it hard to stay awake during the day or making you feel like you need to take naps often.

Sleep patterns that are messed up, like when your normal sleep-wake cycle changes. This can make it hard to sleep at the same time every night or keep a regular sleep pattern.

Wake up a lot at night, have a restless or light sleep, or have vivid, scary dreams or fears that keep you from sleeping.

Having anxiety or rushing thoughts that make it hard to fall asleep or get back to sleep if you wake up in the middle of the night.

v. Changes in appetite or weight

Changes in how much you eat or how much you weigh are typical signs of many conditions, including depression. Here are some signs that your hunger or weight has changed.

Not wanting to eat as much or not being as interested in food. You might find that you don’t want to eat much or at all, and mealtimes become less fun or even hard.

A strong or strong desire to eat, often with cravings for certain kinds of food, especially those high in sugar or carbs.

Unintentional weight loss is when a person loses a lot of weight without trying to. This can become clear in a short amount of time, like a few weeks or months.

Unwanted or significant weight gain, which can be caused by eating more, changing the way you eat, or doing less physical exercise.

Using food to deal with feelings or to feel better. This can lead to overeating or eating without control as a way to comfort or ignore oneself, especially during times of stress or sadness.

vi. Persistent sadness or low mood

One of the most common signs of depression is feeling sad or down all the time. Here are some signs of feeling sad or down for a long time.

Depression is a pervasive sense of sorrow, emptiness, or hopelessness that lasts for at least two weeks or longer.

A big drop in or loss of interest in things or hobbies that used to be fun. You might no longer enjoy doing things that used to make you happy or satisfied.

Increased sensitivity to emotional triggers, which makes it easier to feel sad or tearful in response to even small events or prompts.

A tendency to stay alone or stop interacting with other people. You might like to be alone more than with other people, and it might be hard for you to connect with friends or family.

Finding it hard to feel good emotions like joy, happiness, or excitement, even when the setting would usually make you feel good.


Seek support

Talk about how you feel and what you’ve been through with your friends, family, or a support group. Having a support system can help validate and understand your feelings.

Stay active

Do something active every day, like walking, running, yoga, or swimming. Endorphins are chemicals that are made when you exercise. They can make you feel happier and less depressed.

Prioritize self-care

Prioritize your own well-being by spending time doing things that make you happy and calm down. Reading, taking baths, meditating, getting a massage, and engaging in hobbies that bring you delight are all examples of this.

Maintain a healthy lifestyle

Be mindful of what you put into your body, and aim for a diet high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats. Caffeine, sugary snacks, and processed foods can have a negative effect on your mood and should be avoided if possible. Observe sound sleep hygiene and get enough of shut-eye.

Manage stress

Find healthy ways to cope with stress, such as deep breathing exercises, practicing relaxation techniques, journaling, or engaging in activities that help you unwind and relax.

Educate yourself

The emotional shifts associated with menopause deserve your attention. Having an awareness of the procedure and the knowledge that one’s feelings are typical throughout this time might help reduce feelings of stress and depression.


About the Creator

Abby blasius

I am a passionate content creator with a strong focus on health and wellness. While my educational background lies in a Bachelor of Accounting and Finance, it is my innate desire to help people feel good about themselves in mind, body&soul

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