Hormonal changes are normal occurrences in a woman’s life. These changes affect women often during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. Hormonal imbalances can lead to a wide range of mental and emotional health issues which can affect daily life and overall well-being. In this post, we will delve deeper into the impact of hormonal changes on women’s mental and emotional health.
Puberty is the development of sexual maturity that occurs in both boys and girls. Usually, puberty begins between the ages of 8 and 12 in girls and 9 and 14 in boys. Hormonal changes during puberty trigger numerous physical, emotional, and psychological changes in girls. As estrogen and progesterone levels rise during puberty, many girls may experience mood swings, anxiety, and depression. It can also cause physical changes inducing skin outbreaks, headaches, and tiredness. Several girls also experience premenstrual syndrome (PMS), which is a combination of emotional and physical symptoms that happen a week to ten days before menstruation.
Menstruation is a monthly occurrence for women that involves hormonal changes. The hormonal shifts that take place during the menstrual cycle can contribute to changes in emotional well-being. It’s common for many women to feel emotional, irritable, fatigued, or to experience anxiety or depression during this time. If the emotional discomfort is extreme enough to interfere with daily activities, it is known as Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder. The condition causes changes in mood and physical symptoms such as bloating, headaches, and other physical problems.
Pregnancy is another period where women experience a significant hormonal shift. Along with the physical changes during pregnancy, it often leads to an array of emotional and mental challenges. Many women experience mood swings, irritability, depression, and anxiety during pregnancy due to the hormonal industry in the body. Postnatal depression (PND) is a more severe syndrome that affects around 1 in 10 women after giving birth. It is a psychological illness characterized by the development of depressive symptoms in the weeks and months following childbirth.
The changes women experience through menopause are a normal part of every woman’s life. It can begin as early as 40 years of age, but the average age is 51. Menopause marks the permanent cessation of menstruation and the end of the reproductive stage of life. The hormonal changes during menopause initiate emotional and physical changes in many women. Changes can include experiencing hot flashes, night sweats, depression, anxiety, and irritability. Other mood changes include difficulty in managing anger, feelings of sadness, and a lack of affection.
Hormonal changes are inevitable in the life of women, and it’s essential to address any symptoms of emotional and mental distress related to hormonal changes. While hormonal changes are natural, it doesn’t mean women should endure any negative effects they can bring. It’s essential to educate ourselves and our loved ones about hormonal health and engage in an active conversation about our mental health to overcome any challenges menstrual cycles, pregnancy, or menopause might bring. However, if the effect is severe for an extended period, one must seek professional advice promptly. Hormonal and emotional health is a critical part of women’s health, and we should prioritize taking care of it.