Depression is more serious than occasional sadness. And that is something no one should dismiss or ignore. During menopause, your plummeting estrogen levels affect your feel-good brain chemicals: serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins. (As if hot flashes weren’t enough to deal with!) Not to mention, fluctuating hormones can also kick up testosterone (yup, women have some, too), which may also sour your mood. Luckily, most antidepressants (and lifestyle interventions) work by boosting these feel-good brain chemicals back to normal levels. So if you are feeling sad more days than not, tell your doctor. He can talk to you about antidepressant medication options as well as things like exercise, getting better sleep (by wearing loose clothing to bed and keeping a fan nearby), and stress reduction techniques. He may refer you to a therapist or psychiatrist who will be better equipped to talk to you about your symptoms and give you coping techniques. Bottom line, you have a lot of options.
A Answers (2)
Michael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answered
Ed Ratush, Psychiatry, answeredWhenever a person feels bad, whether physical or psychological, it is important to get back to basics: Start eating healthy. Organic food may eliminate some unhealthy added ingrediants that may at times contribute to poor mood or hormonal dysregulation. Sometimes foods actually have hormones or hormone inducing molecules. Make sure you take on a strict sleep hygeine schedule. That is make sure that you are awake early and get exposure to sunlight for a couple of hours each day. Yoga is a great way to manage down mood states and is clinically effective for more clinical conditions such as anxiety and depression. Offer your help to someone in need. Many times helping others does wonders! If symptoms persist consider consulting a professional: GYN, Endocrinoligist, Psyhiatrist.