One of the significant milestones women will go through in their lifetimes is menopause. Menopause marks the end of a woman’s ability to conceive a child, and with that, the stopping of her menstrual cycle once menopause is complete. The majority of women experience menopause between the ages of forty-five and sixty, though the duration is different for every woman.
This natural process every woman experiences has some challenges though—besides numerous physical symptoms, menopause often affects a woman’s mental health and can negatively impact her daily life. Learn more about the symptoms, causes, and treatments women endure when it comes to menopause, and the impact it can have on their mental health.
How Can Menopause Affect Mental Health?
Estrogen (the hormone responsible for sexual and reproductive development in women) is the main culprit when it comes to connecting menopause to mental health. Sufficient levels of estrogen must be present in the brain to keep a patient mentally stable, and the hormone actively protects the brain’s neurons against degeneration, while enhancing cognitive function and memory. Many of the symptoms of menopause, especially mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety, are associated with serotonin dysfunction, which, according to research, serotonin and estrogen are indistinguishably connected.
During menopause and perimenopause, the stage that prepares the body for menopause, the level of estrogen within a woman’s body drops significantly, which can lead to depression, anxiety, and can be especially damaging to a woman’s self-esteem. The reason for these emotional issues is not always apparent, as research shows menopausal symptoms can affect mood and well-being. To learn more about preparing for menopause, check out this informative article: 10 Things Every Woman Should Prepare For Menopause