Peri/menopausal women can be particularly vulnerable to depression, leaving us that much more sensitive due to hormonal shifts during this time.
But how do we differentiate between feeling blue and being depressed?
- Down in the dumps
- Feeling a bit ‘meh’
- Bursting into tears over the most mundane $hit ever - sad films reduce you to a snivelling, snotty mess
- You feel like crap
- Apathetic and indifferent
- Even basics like getting dressed seem like a chore
- You don’t quite know what to do with yourself!
- Binge-eating/drinking (more than usual!), followed by extreme bouts of self-criticism and pity-me parties!
And so the cycle continues…rinse and repeat…
Most people feel blue now and again, which is especially true for us hotties as we are having to deal with our bodies changing, and, to add insult to injury, it feels like we’re just mere passengers on this journey where we ride a rollercoaster of emotions daily. Our only advice is to buckle up and try to go with the flow…it’s not necessarily an enjoyable ride and it does have its ups and downs. HOWEVER, take heart dear hottie, and know that you WILL come out the other side, albeit a little shaken and stirred!
‘True ‘depression has a whole host of other symptoms in addition to the already mammoth list mentioned above. However, they may be exacerbated and prolonged by any one, or several, of the following:
- Significant weight loss or weight gain as your appetite changes
- Insomnia - frequent problems sleeping - getting to sleep, waking up during the night, oversleeping
- Struggling with feelings of guilt
- Overwhelmed with feelings of helplessness or hopelessness
- Constantly feeling sad, anxious, empty
- Losing interest in daily activities and hobbies
- Difficulty concentrating, problems with remembering things, decision-making
- Fatigue/extreme loss of energy
- Feeling extremely irritable and restless
- You experience aches and pains, headaches, cramps or digestive problems which have no obvious physical cause and may not ease, even with treatment
- Some women can also have thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
If you have been experiencing some of these symptoms, most days, and for at least two weeks, you may be experiencing major depression and should seek help from your GP immediately. They should be able to diagnose you and prescribe the treatment you need.
[Major] depression is a condition which is associated with a chemical imbalance in the brain - the changing hormones we experience during peri/menopause may also be associated with that imbalance.
Looking after our emotional health during peri/menopause is vital and it is important to make sure we can differentiate between feeling blue and being depressed.
If you are depressed, we cannot emphasise enough the importance of contacting your GP so they can address your needs ASAP.
If you are feeling blue, there are quite a few things you can do to help make yourself feel better, to lift your mood.
Go for a walk in the local park, along the beach, the forest, along a lakeside. Breathe in the fresh air, inhale nature's scents and enjoy the scenery. It is scientifically proven that spending time in nature, is hugely beneficial for mental and physical health. The Japanese tend to call it ‘forest-bathing’ - best of all, you don’t need a swimsuit, just some snuggly clothing and comfies!
Try some meditation to de-stress or uplift your soul. Our magazine has a smorgasbord of guided meditations for every emotion and mood you may experience.
‘Eat the rainbow’ - our bodies need a variety of fruit and vegetables which are brimming with vitamins and minerals to stay healthy, and nature has thoughtfully colour-coded these for us. You are what you eat - so put the colour back into your life.
How you dress can have an impact on how you feel! So if you want to feel fabulous make sure you look fabulous! Whether that’s putting on makeup, a favourite outfit, or a spritz of your favourite scent, especially as scents can uplift your mood and evoke memories…it’s the smell factor…smell good, feel good. Or scented oils, such as geranium or orange are particularly good mood-boosters.
Make sure you stay well-hydrated…water really is the true elixir of life…Your skin and joints (and wallet) will thank you for it!
Also try to limit your caffeine and alcohol intake, as they can exacerbate any depressive symptoms.
And our personal favourite: Compile a mood-enhancing playlist for whenever you’re feeling down in the dumps - kick off your shoes, hit play, sing out loud, shake your booty, and dance your socks off. Glitter ball and disco lights optional. Now go dance yourselves dizzy hotties (Liquid Gold)!
Here’s one we made earlier!
Things Can Only Get Better - D-Ream
Titanium - David Guetta feat. Sia
This Is Me - Keala Settle & The Greatest Showman Ensemble
Roar - Katy Perry
Rise - Katy Perry
Reach - S Club 7
The Only Way is Up - Yazz
The One and Only - Chesney Hawkes
Keep On Movin’ - Five
It’s Alright - East 17
I Am What I Am - Gloria Gaynor
Don’t Stop Believing - Journey
Tubthumping - Chumbawamba