“While it’s a myth that menopause itself makes women irritable, the sleep disturbances that stem from hot flashes and night sweats can certainly make a woman irritable”.1

Umbrella
What may the Menopause Irritability Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Menopause Irritability
  • Menopause Mood Changes

Perimenopause

Is there an association between perimenopause and irritability?

In Five Solutions for Menopause Symptoms: 1. Mood Changes the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) elaborate on:

“Some women find that hormone fluctuations in perimenopause create a feeling of being out of control. Reports of increased irritability, anxiety, fatigue, and blue moods are not uncommon”.2

Cause

What causes irritability?

In Menopause 101: A Primer for the Perimenopausal – Common Body Changes At Menopause: Night Sweats the NAMS note:

“While it’s a myth that menopause itself makes women irritable, the sleep disturbances that stem from hot flashes and night sweats can certainly make a woman irritable”.3

In Factors Affecting Women: Menopause the (Australian) Beyondblue explain:

“Menopause can increase the risk of developing mental health issues. Hormone changes in the years leading to menopause (perimenopause) can cause mood swings and irritability and can contribute to depression and anxiety. Changes in hormonal levels can also result in a range of physical challenges such as hot flushes, night sweats, interrupted sleep patterns and weight gain – all of which can affect mental health”.4

Management

What may reduce irritability?

The NAMS explain:

“Relaxation and stress-reduction techniques, including deep-breathing exercises and massage, a healthy lifestyle (good nutrition and daily exercise), and enjoyable, self-nurturing activities may all be helpful. Some women try to treat their menopause symptoms with over-the-counter products such as St. John’s wort or vitamin B6”.5

The NAMS also note:

“Treatments for night sweats and hot flashes include lifestyle changes, nonprescription remedies, hormone therapy (with estrogen plus progestogen, or estrogen alone for women without a uterus), and nonhormonal prescription drugs”.6

Health Care Provider

What if my irritability makes me more irritable?

If your irritability makes you more irritable, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this. The NAMS explain:

Menopause Irritability
“Discussing mood issues with your healthcare provider can help you identify the cause, assess for severe depression, and decide on the most appropriate intervention”.7

Health Topics A-Z

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Links

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Sources

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Sources

  1. Menopause 101: A Primer for the Perimenopausal – Common Body Changes At Menopause: Night Sweats. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/menopause-101-a-primer-for-the-perimenopausal Accessed: 04 May 2020
  2. Five Solutions for Menopause Symptoms: 1. Mood Changes. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/five-solutions-for-menopause-symptoms Accessed: 04 May 2020
  3. Menopause 101: A Primer for the Perimenopausal – Common Body Changes At Menopause: Night Sweats. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/menopause-101-a-primer-for-the-perimenopausal Accessed: 04 May 2020
  4. Factors Affecting Women: Menopause. Beyondblue https://www.beyondblue.org.au/who-does-it-affect/women/factors-affecting-women Accessed: 04 May 2020
  5. Five Solutions for Menopause Symptoms: 1. Mood Changes. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/five-solutions-for-menopause-symptoms Accessed: 04 May 2020
  6. Menopause 101: A Primer for the Perimenopausal – Common Body Changes At Menopause: Night Sweats. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/menopause-101-a-primer-for-the-perimenopausal Accessed: 04 May 2020
  7. Five Solutions for Menopause Symptoms: 1. Mood Changes. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/five-solutions-for-menopause-symptoms Accessed: 04 May 2020
Topic Last Updated: 04 May 2020 – Topic Last Reviewed: 04 May 2020
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