Low mood can be characterized by sadness, anxiety or panic, worry, tiredness, low self-esteem, frustration, and/or anger. Low mood seems to be able to be lifted fairly quickly, within a few days or weeks. Incorporating certain lifestyle changes have been proven to help uplift mood. Low mood that does not go away would be categorized as depression. Depression symptoms tend to be a bit more severe: low mood lasting for over 2 weeks, lack of enjoyment in life, hopelessness, lacking energy, lack of concentration on everyday tasks, loss of appetite, sleeping more, not being able to sleep
, suicidal ideations, and self-harm ideations.
There are accessible treatments out there for depression, once professionally diagnosed. One can seek out the support of a therapist, incorporate lifestyle changes, and/or consider taking antidepressants.
Previous studies have linked perimenopause to depression and worsening of depressive symptoms, as a result. Researchers asserted that perimenopausal women were twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression compared to those who were pre-perimenopausal. Risk factors for perimenopausal depression are fluctuating levels of estradiol (female hormone), family history of depression, prior history of abuse, negative views on aging, intense menopausal symptoms, sedentary lifestyle, smoking, loneliness, and low self-esteem. Overall, the lowered estrogen levels also play a role in mood swings during menopausal transition, which can be attributed to low mood. Hormone imbalances can certainly result in impacts on mood. Overall, if these mood swings become severe and frequent enough, they can result in depression.
Incorporating lifestyle changes can result in improved mood. It is recommended to look towards “self-help” techniques before seeking out medical attention. It is important to know that you are not alone in this battle! There are plenty of resources available for those who may be struggling through this rough time period.
-Written by Kaila An MPH