Association Of Menopause And Depression In Women

Menopause And Depression In Women

Menopause And Depression In Women All of us feel sad or depressed at various stages of our lives, but when depressed feelings occur frequently or constantly, it is time to worry. Women may not realize that depression in them is associated with hormonal changes in the body, during menopause or peri-menopause.

Those approaching menopause are at much greater risk of depression than menopausal women. Researchers have proven that hormonal changes play a crucial role in menopause driven depression. It is more likely to occur in peri-menopausal years as estrogen declines gradually, bringing on the depressive mood.

Menopause And Depression In Women

Vital Signs And Symptoms Of Depression And Menopause

Onset of menopause and depression share many symptoms including irritability, fatigue, anxiety, sleep troubles and inability to concentrate properly. Many symptoms are similar and therefore, depression goes unnoticed and untreated in women who normally consider them as a natural process of aging.

During premenopausal phase only, women should look for signals like decreased interest in activities, feeling of worthlessness, guilt feeling, more than one week of continual depressive mood, restlessness and thoughts of suicide. Any of these symptoms that stay for more than a few days is an indication of depression and must be dealt with proper consultation from the doctor. Untreated depression in women approaching menopause can lead to higher risks of severe medical problems of low bone mineral density, fractures and heart attacks.

Menopause Influences Depression

Depression is linked to hormonal changes observed in menopause and biochemical changes that happen in the brain. With drop of estrogens levels, serotonin levels of the brain that regulates emotions, mood and sleep also gets reduced. The two other neurotransmitters dopamine and noradrenalin production is affected due to abnormal levels of hormones during menopause, making women more prone to depression. Presence of stress during that period will be an added factor that heightens the risk to manifolds more.


There are many other risks factors that can promote depression during this phase but certainly, the change in hormonal levels play a direct role in development of depression. Depression tends to be more in women with high sensitivity to fluctuated hormones and smokers than the non smokers. Also, women having high premenstrual syndrome, before transition to menopause have greater risk of depression as compared to other peri-menopausal women.

Other Factors That Influence Depression During Menopause

Woman’s menopausal period is also driven by her living conditions, diet, religious beliefs, rituals, level of education, sexual approach, reproduction and aging. Women experience many psychological and physical changes in the years proceeding to menopause. In case, these are being handled positively and with right approach, severe depression effects can be avoided.

Knowing about menopause and its symptoms beforehand serves to be very useful in combating depression blues. Women who had suffered from earlier episodes of depression during post natal period and severe psychological effects of Pre menstrual syndrome tend to show more severe depression at menopause.

Combat Depression

Depression is treatable, so there is no need to suffer from its long term effects. Those, who are under moderate to severe depression, should depend on antidepressant drugs as advised by the practitioner to get relief.

antidepressant drugs

Women experiencing depression in early menopause stage can opt for hormone replacement therapy, after weighing the pros and cons of the therapy.