Information for women, their partners and families about mood changes and depression during menopause and later life
The menopause can lead to changes in your mood, anxiety and lower energy. This is due to your body adjusting to the decline in levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. Lack of sleep due to night sweats may also lead to mood swings.
At this time of your life there may also be other factors, coinciding with the menopause, that affect your mood. These could include children growing up and leaving home, looking after ageing parents or other relatives, or facing the loss of your parents.
Mood changes that occur as a result of menopause should not be confused with depression. Depression is a much more serious condition in which very low mood is constant for a longer periods of time, around two weeks or more.
The risk of depression can increase during the menopause. You should seek help if you or those around you feel you are suffering more than mood swings. If you are concerned, speak with your GP about how you are feeling.
Find out more about mood changes and depression
The following links provide information about mood changes, how to recognise depression during menopause and how it can be treated:
- Emotions: mood swings, anxiety and depression (Healthtalk)
Videos of women talking about these symptoms and how they affected their lives
- Postmenopausal depression (Patient)
Tips for how to recognise the difference between mood swings and depression
- Low mood, and depression (NHS)
Includes information about symptoms and what types of help are available
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