11 Natural Remedies For Menopause Mood Swings
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As you start going through perimenopause and into menopause you may notice that your moods are more volatile and menopausal mood swings become more common. These emotional changes can be triggered by fluctuating hormones or other environmental factors such as family and work stressors as well as dietary choices.
It is important to recognize what is causing these symptoms that put you on this emotional roller coaster to know which appropriate lifestyle changes you can make to minimize or stop them.
This post details what causes the mood swings and what you can do about them with eleven natural remedies for menopause mood swings
Your emotional symptoms in menopause
I’m not sure if you remember but I certainly do. Going through my teenage years was one hell of a ride. My emotions were all over the place. I had absolutely no idea what was happening but saw all my friends going through something similar and just assumed it was a part of growing up.
In menopause, it felt like I connected with my teenage self again and rode those same rollercoasters of hormonal fuelled dips and turns.
Though unlike the teenage you, in menopause you understand your moods more and have an idea of what’s going on. However, you don’t have that same luxury of being able to throw yourself on your bed, after slamming the door, in total absorption of scrolling tick-tock while you get a hold of your emotions.
For many menopausal and post menopausal women, this is a difficult time because the volatile emotions highlight an invisible line into the later part of their life.
What causes menopausal mood swings
The most common cause of menopause mood swings is fluctuating estrogen. When a woman is first entering menopause the hormone estrogen starts rising and falling erratically.
We know this is one of the main causes of menopausal symptoms including weight gain and night sweats but this fluctuation can also lead to weepiness and irritability as well as heightened emotions.
Through perimenopause, you may experience a significant change in moods. Maybe feeling depressed and overwhelmed by simple tasks some of the times while other times feel quite peppy and enthusiastic. These mood swings vary from day to day leaving you feeling unsure of what to expect next.
Not all women experience mood swings during menopause. Unfortunately they’re not something you can predict. Women at greater risk will often have these risk factors:
- a history of depression
- high levels of stress
- poor physical health
As you move into menopause things that once wouldn’t have been on your radar as something to worry about suddenly seem frustrating and annoying.
If this is you you’re definitely not in that boat alone and there are things you can do to help. There are remedies and steps you can take to promote an overall improvement in your moods.
Stop forgetting appointments and your first born’s name!
How do the mood swings show up?
Can’t fit that square peg into that round hole and find yourself wanting to jam it in there with all your might.
Irritability without reason
Kid’s are 5 minutes late out of the school gate and you feel irrationally irritable about it. This could be menopause moodiness.
Crying about anything and everything
Those small acts of kindness you see in ads on T.V., seeing someone doing a charitable thing on Twitter. If you find yourself crying at the smallest things this can be a symptom of your body going through changes.
Estrogen’s effect on serotonin
Low estrogen levels can trigger serotonin depletion. This neurotransmitter is responsible for balancing/boosting moods, managing anxiety, and stabilizing our emotions.
A healthy serotonin level keeps your moods in balance which makes it an important factor in emotional health. When you start to experience serotonin depletion the result of this is feeling irritable, depressed, or anxious.
Lower serotonin levels can also contribute to sleep disruption which can start a chain reaction of imbalanced hormones.
Midlife issues women may experience
This time of life can put a lot on our plates to deal with. Aging parents, changing employment, money issues, kids coming and going from the home, the feeling of life passing us by.
In midlife, we can have a lot to deal with and the stress of this can lead to health issues. Mood changes in midlife can arise from this or be a result of other health issues that aren’t hormonal.
How to improve mood swings
1. Know the warning signs or triggers
Knowing the warning signs of a mood swing can catch things before they escalate. That way you can try and remove the source of stress rather than allowing it to build up to a point where your moods are completely out of control. Some of the more obvious signs are feeling depressed, anxious, having trouble sleeping, feeling overwhelmed by simple tasks.
2. Journal your feelings
Take note after mood swings of how you’re feeling throughout the days, what you’re eating and drinking, and what’s going on around you.
Keep a journal to keep track of your highs and lows. This will help you find out more about yourself and what triggers these mood changes. You might realize why certain things make you feel over-the-top happy or incredibly down.
3. Pattern interrupt
This technique includes moving away from where you are starting to feel the strong emotions.
This involves physically moving away to a place that makes you feel better or calms your nerves.
4. Do something calming
to lessen the impact.
Take a bath, go shopping with a friend, put on calming music to listen to, do deep-breathing exercises to help bring back your inner calm, or a short walk around your neighborhood.
Just that, breathe. When we get worked up the natural reaction is to hold our breath or take shallow breaths. Do just the opposite and give yourself a calming breathing exercise. Inhale deeply through your nose for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 2 seconds, and exhale through your mouth slowly for 6 seconds.
6. Eat a healthy diet
Eat a variety of healthy plant foods for a good boost of energy and nutrients and lean protein to help even out your moods. Avoid added sugar and alcohol which can trigger uneven emotions.
Add flaxseed and flaxseed oil into your day
Flaxseed and flaxseed oil are a good source of lignans, which can help balance female hormones.
Your hormonal imbalance is already causing enough jitteriness and mood swings without adding to the problem with caffeine.
Caffeine can also affect your sleep which will make you moody the next day. If you can’t completely go without your cup of black gold cut back to one in the morning.
7. Consider supplements
Magnesium would be a good choice. Known to help with anxiety and stress it has also been shown do well reducing hot flashes and boost seratonin the good mood hormone.
Valerian root is used for the treatment various neural conditions including anxiety. It also contains phytoestrogens, so can help to treat menopause symptoms and sleeplessness.
Even if it’s just a half-hour brisk walk, exercise is always good for the mind. It releases endorphins which will help you feel better and put you in a more positive mood.
9. Get enough sleep
Your body needs proper rest to function optimally. Sleep disturbance can lead to mood swings, low energy, and poor mental performance.
Practice good sleep hygiene like staying away from bright light before you go to sleep, having a dark room, and relaxation techniques.
10. Manage stress
Emotions are strongly connected with stress. Having an outlet for the stresses in your life is important to maintain positive moods. Healthy ways of managing stress include yoga, meditation, exercise, taking warm baths or getting massages.
11. Hormone replacement therapy
Some women with disabling mood swings find it easier to take hormone replacement therapy which is an effective way to treat menopausal symptoms. There are potential health risks but if you have any doubts talk to a gynecologist who will be able to give you up-to-date and correct information.
It will come to an end
Your hormone ups and down will eventually finish and you will return to a more even keel.
Menopause marks the end of one stage of life but the beginning of another that can be just as full and positive with a deeper understanding and intuition of human relationships.
Know when to seek help.
It is important not to let feelings of anxiety and depression or sad moods take hold and overwhelm you. Fear, frustration, and anger are all easily dealt with naturally following the tips in this post but if you find your emotions getting out of your control it is important to seek help from a healthcare professional. Your doctor will be able to point you in the right direction for the help you need.