Don’t Stress: 10 Tips for Relief from Irritability by Dr. Pamela Dee^

Dr. Pamela Dee, OB/GYN, is a paid spokesperson for Estroven®. The information provided herein is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be construed as medical advice or to replace professional medical care. You should always seek the advice of a medical professional before starting any new medication or dietary supplement. The opinions stated herein are those solely of the writer and do not portray the opinions of the Estroven® brand, i- Health, Inc., or DSM.

Dr. Pamela Dee^ (Dr. Pam) is America’s leading menopause expert & OB/GYN, and she is on a mission to encourage honest dialogue about the physical and emotional symptoms that accompany menopause. Her goal is to de-stigmatize menopause and start the “Menopause Romance Revolution.” Her film, LOVE, SWEAT & TEARS shares an empowering message of hope and action. Dr. Pam^ won’t rest until every woman knows the truth about menopause, that there is hope and that the third part of a woman’s life can be the best and most romantic.

During menopause, poor functioning of the ovaries and the decrease in hormone production can contribute to mood swings and irritability. I like to explain it as puberty in reverse. How do we describe teenagers? They are moody—angry one minute, happy the next. Later in life when the ovaries begin to fail, stress and irritability may occur again. Perimenopausal irritability is a complex interplay between hormonal changes and the stressors that occur at midlife, including relationship difficulties, medical problems, social status changes (such as divorce or retirement), concerns about adolescent children and/or aging parents, college tuition worries and body image, among other stressful events that occur at this time of their lives. Hot flashes, night flushes, insomnia, fatigue and excessive menses are annoying symptoms that just add to the irritability that a woman may encounter.

What can you do to reduce menopausal anxiety and irritability? First, make a decision to take the time to care for yourself. Here are some suggestions that I offer daily in my gynecology practice:

  1. Try to stick to a healthy, plant-based, low-fat and low-alcohol diet.
  2. Engage in daily exercise which will contribute to better and deeper sleep at night.
  3. Work on staying hydrated. All of your organs, including your brain, work more efficiently with the proper hydration.
  4. Make a point to engage in enjoyable hobbies and self-nurturing activities. Find creative outlets that give you joy.
  5. Learn to say “no” to activities and requests that you do not have time for. When you start saying no, people will quit asking you do things for them. It works! My personal favorite response is, “I’m sorry, I can’t help you with that.” Try to fight the urge to elaborate on why you can’t do it.
  6. Pray, read, meditate or do yoga. Give yourself a devoted time for peaceful release during each day.
  7. Cut back on alcohol. It may act as a depressant, especially if used to self-medicate stress and anxiety.
  8. Maintain a healthy sex life. In addition to fostering your relationship, it’s fun, relaxing and comforting. Enjoy it!
  9. Consider a menopause support group or counseling session. Once you start talking to other women, you will realize how normal all of your symptoms are during this transition.
  10. Try Estroven® Stress Plus Mood & Memory. It is safe, non-hormonal and formulated with magnolia bark extract to help relieve menopausal stress and irritability.*

Estroven® is a trademark of DSM.
^Dr. Pamela Dee is a paid spokeswoman for Estroven®.