Petra Coveney shares research on mental health and menopause
We're into the third week of January and Blue Monday is aptly named the most difficult day of the year. Many people struggle to maintain good intentions, and for those of us in mid-winter, the weather and darkness can get us down. If you've started an exercise or nutrition plan, you may feel unmotivated...This is normal.
But for women in the menopause, mental health can be an even more serious issue. You may have read some Media reports this week in The Guardian newspaper about the affect of low oestrogen causing low mood (Anhedonia), anxiety and depression. BBC News reported on research showing a possible link between HRT and lower risks of dementia in specific groups of women (more research is needed). And recent research into nuerodivergence on the Balance App suggests menopause can exacerbate ADHD causing more anxiety, difficulties concentrating, and low mood.
Not everyone experiences these psychological symptoms, but a UK parliamentary committee report revealed that 86% of those surveyed had experienced mental health problems in menopause - 77% for the first time!
So if you're feeling blue this Monday, anxious or depressed please remember: you are not alone and help is available. It is not your 'fault' - it's your hormones, although stressful life circumstances can also be a trigger. Please reach out and seek help, talk to friends and family, discuss it with your GP and remember: these feelings will not last.
I have written you a Blogpost with a list of FREE resources and some Menopause Yoga guidance and practices that can help some women, and if you'd like a motivational boost you can join my morning yoga classes.
Most importantly, let's look after each other. The next time you see a friend ask her:
"How are you feeling - today?" Because how we feel changes and talking about our mental health may be the first step towards seeking help.
Love, Kindness and Compassion Always.