Perimenopause usually occurs between ages 35-50.
Around this age ovulation in women is more erratic and the menstrual cycle becomes irregular. This is caused by an imbalance in female hormones, estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen affects serotonin in the brain and progesterone affects a brain chemical called GABA.
Serotonin and GABA affect mood positively. A disruption in ovulation leads to a disruption in hormones, and this leads to a disruption in mood in the negative which leads to depression. Studies show that anywhere from 20%–40% of perimenopausal women will experience depression.
Signs include irritability, lack of interest in activities, fatigue, lack of motivation, excessive sleeping or insomnia, weight gain, and cravings.
Dr. Eldred Taylor, author of Are Your Hormones Making You Sick?, joins Dr. Susanne to discuss more about this very unique form of depression, as well as the non-pharmaceutical treatment options available.