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How to Cope with Menopause Mood Swings and Anger

How to Cope with Menopause Mood Swings and Anger

Menopause is a natural part of aging for women. It’s the time when your menstruation stops as the ovaries run out of egg cells. Most women experience menopause in their early 50s, but it can happen earlier or later. Besides the physical symptoms, including vaginal dryness, hot flashes, night sweats, headaches, and dizziness, a menopausal woman may also experience emotional changes. What causes menopause mood swings and anger, and how can you deal with them?

menopause mood swings and anger

Causes of menopause mood swings and anger

Before we discuss the tips in coping with the emotional changes during menopause, let us first explain why these changes happen.

Hormones

The primary cause, according to experts, is the hormonal shift. During menopause, estrogen and progesterone levels fluctuate and decline, causing brain changes that trigger mood swings and, sometimes, anger.

The severity of the mood swings also depends on how sensitive a woman is to hormonal changes. Experts cannot explain it yet, but they emphasize that some women are simply more sensitive than others.

Contributing factors

Menopause mood swings and anger can also happen due to (or made worse by) some contributing factors such as aging and midlife crisis, a challenging period where people struggle to accept that half of their lives have passed.

Often, a woman’s menopause coincides with relationship issues, retirement, career problems, and added responsibility to care for aging parents. Moreover, women sometimes see menopause as a hallmark sign of aging.

How to cope with menopause mood swings and anger

You may not be able to prevent the emotional changes that come with menopause, but you can practice some steps to deal with them effectively.

Be kind to yourself

The first step in coping with the emotional changes is to accept that they are normal; you shouldn’t berate yourself for experiencing them.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that the mood swings and anger are “all in your head.” Remember that actual changes are happening in your brain that cause mood swings to happen.

The good news is, menopause mood swings and anger will gradually disappear, especially with proper intervention.

Reduce stress

Are you under a lot of stress? If so, then it may be making your mood swings worse.

Reduce your workload by breaking large goals into smaller tasks. Prioritize the most important projects and delegate responsibilities to others.

Relaxation techniques like meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises also help lower stress levels.

Try some aerobic exercises

One study revealed that performing 50 minutes of aerobic exercises weekly for 6 months improved some of the symptoms of menopause, including irritability and mood swings. Additionally, exercise releases endorphins, the feel-good hormones that reduce pain.

Talk to your doctor about the best physical activity for you. To ensure that you’ll regularly exercise, pick your schedule carefully and try to make it fun by exercising in the garden or adding some music.

Get plenty of sleep

Sleep deprivation makes you more vulnerable to mood swings and irritability. Set a regular sleeping schedule and stick to it. To make it easier for you to sleep, avoid caffeine, exercise, heavy meals, and mobile phone use so close to bedtime.

Have a healthy diet

A healthy diet, just like exercise, boosts your mood. Consuming various foods rich in protein, folate, omega-3 fatty acids, and other nutrients can help ease menopause mood swings and anger.

Seek support

If things become overwhelming, seek support from your loved ones. Spend time with them doing something that you love.

In case the emotional changes become debilitating, consult your doctor for appropriate treatment. They may encourage you to have hormone replacement therapy, where you will be given medications that contain the hormones, estrogen, and progesterone. This typically provides short-term relief from symptoms. However, the doctor must explain the benefits and risks of hormone replacement therapy.

Coping with menopause is not something you can do overnight. It may take time, but as your body gets used to the physical and hormonal changes, things will eventually get better.

In the meantime, focus on boosting both your physical and mental health by doing proper exercise, eating a healthy diet, reducing stress, and seeking support.

Learn more about Menopause here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Effect of aerobic training on menopausal symptoms—a randomized controlled trial
https://journals.lww.com/menopausejournal/Abstract/2012/06000/Effect_of_aerobic_training_on_menopausal.18.aspx
Accessed November 25, 2020

Treatment
-Menopause
https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/menopause/treatment/
Accessed November 25, 2020

Mood changes and depression
https://www.rcog.org.uk/en/patients/menopause/mood-changes-and-depression/
Accessed November 25, 2020

Going Mad in Perimenopause? Signs and Solutions
https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/going-mad-in-perimenopause-signs-and-solutions#
Accessed November 25, 2020

Menopause Mood Swings
https://www.sutterhealth.org/health/womens-health/menopause-mood-swings
Accessed November 25, 2020

Picture of the author
Medically reviewed by Jobelle Ann Dela Cruz Bigalbal, M.D.
Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N.
Updated Dec 03, 2020
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