Menopause and Depression (How To Cope)

Menopause and depression tend to go together for many women. Yet, some women will experience a mild depression while other women will have such a bout with depression that it literally shuts down their lives. There seems to be no perfect answer to why depression occurs so regularly with menopause. However, most doctors are coming to believe that the depression most women have with menopause happens because of the drastic decrease in estrogen levels they have in their bodies.

Other researchers, though, argue that the depression is caused by the symptoms a woman must constantly battle during menopause like insomnia, night sweats, hot flashes, fatigue, and mood swings that she simply cannot control. In spite of the cause, menopause and depression occur quite regularly together.

If you are now undergoing menopause depression symptoms, even those linked to early menopause, you should first remember that you are not the only one in this situation. The same problem is shared by thousands of other women. Your next step should be to talk to your doctor about possible solutions to your depression symptoms. You might also try to control the symptoms on your own.

What is Peri Menopause

There are various different terms related to menopause. It can be quite tricky to sort all of them out. For most women, menopause begins between the ages of forty-seven and fifty-two. There are, of course, exceptions to this and every other rule dealing with menopause.

When a woman reaches her late thirties or early forties, she may start to experience a number of symptoms that might sound strangely like menopause. She should realize at that point that she may be experiencing the great change in life a bit earlier than expected. This time of life is called peri-menopause. Some women try to blame themselves for this earlier than expected change in life, however, even eating all of the right foods and getting the exercise you should be cannot prevent this for some women.

The first signal of peri-menopause for a woman is a change in the frequency of her monthly cycle. She may also begin to notice a number of aches and pains that she has not previously seen in her body before. Moreover, she may have trouble concentrating on tasks she once loved. She may start to forget simple, everyday items, like picking up the dry cleaning or buying milk at the store. This can seem odd, and it can even cause some women to panic.

What to do for Arthritis Pain

An arsenal of weapons exists for people suffering from rhuematoid arthritis. This armory list of what to do for arthritis pain includes exercise, topical medications, prescription analgesics, and herbal and dietary supplements.

Arthritis pain can be eased, if not eliminated, through targeted, physician-approved exercises. Maintaining good muscle tone benefits joints as well as the natural pain-relieving endorphins produced during regular exercise. By adhering to a routine of range-of-motion exercises as well as those that further strength and endurance, arthritis suffers can make excellent progress in the war against pain.

Topical medications also play a significant role in arthritis treatment, especially if pain is mild, the disease has affected only several joints, or as an adjunct to oral medications. These pain relief arthritis fighters include products offered in gel, cream, or salve form and are applied directly to the skin at the point of pain origin.

Products containing capsaicin – the ingredient in certain peppers that makes them hot to the taste – block transmission of a pain-relay substance to the brain. Ingredients such as menthol, camphor, and the oils of wintergreen, eucalyptus, and turpentine also help by delivering heat or coldness to a muscle, which, in turn, alleviates joint pain. Salicylatic compounds found in Ben Gay, Aspercreme, Flexall, and similar products additionally aid in arthritis pain relief by penetrating the skin.

What Fruit is Highest in Vitamin C

Finding out what fruit is highest in Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) may help determine how best to manage certain arthritis treatment programs. The key, however, lies in what type of arthritis afflicts the sufferer. For those suffering with osteoarthritis of the knee, for instance, Vitamin C may do more harm than help. In experiments with guinea pigs, researchers have discovered that long-term dosages of the supplement actually cause more damage to already-inflamed joints. On the other hand, people with rheumatoid arthritis appear to benefit from ascorbic acid given in large amounts over a long period of time.

In order to use this knowledge regarding Vitamin C, it behooves people suffering from the disease, then, to not only know which type of arthritis they have, but to also know which fruit (the most Vitamin C-loaded food group) contains the highest amount of this important vitamin. People with osteoarthritis can then avoid those fruits, while people with rheumatoid arthritis can increase the amounts of those foods in their diets.

Defining high-Vitamin C fruits as those that contained at least 60 milligrams per serving, the list includes:

What Foods to Avoid if You Have Gout

Knowing what foods to avoid if you have gout may mean the difference between a lifetime of suffering and a relatively pain-free existence. Dietary considerations are only one part of this type of arthritis pain relief treatment, but many doctors consider it important.

Although gout is a hereditary disease characterized by the body’s inability to properly process uric acid (a waste product produced during the metabolism of food), you can maintain a degree of control over the disease by simply watching what you eat.


What Causes Gout

Researchers conclude that what causes gout – a type of arthritis – can be traced to many things. Overindulgence in alcoholic drinks, certain foods, a surgical procedure, crash dieting, joint injury – even chemotherapy can initiate gout.

A naturally forming substance called “purine,” found in the body and in some foods must be broken down during the digestion process. The waste product formed by this breakdown, uric acid, when present in too great amounts, crystallizes and settles into the fluid that surrounds joints of the body.

What are Some Good Exercises for Arthritis

Studies indicate that people diagnosed with arthritis benefit greatly from daily exercise. From joint pain and stiffness reduction to an increase in strength, ease of movement, endurance, and heart-healthiness, it pays to determine what are some good exercises for arthritis.

Exercises to help with arthritis relief include those that improve range-of-motion (ROM), strength and endurance, and cardiovascular health. Exercises should always be first approved by a physician or a physical therapist who specializes in exercises for arthritis pain relief.

Range-of-motion (ROM) exercises used in arthritis treatment add flexibility and should be done before any other kind of exercise. ROM exercises include:

  • pelvic tilts
  • hip lifts
  • finger curls
  • arm rotations
  • thumb rolls
  • wrist flexions and extensions

Building up surrounding muscle tissue with strength training provides another good way to combat arthritis-related joint pain. Strength training challenges and forces muscles to adapt to stress and can be done with or without the use of weights. Again, under the direction of a physician, these exercises not only directly help arthritic joints, but also help prevent further damage or injury to other parts of the body that may be put under too much duress as an effort to compensate for not performing without joint pain.

Prednisone and Joint Pain

Prednisone and joint pain are linked only when inflammation and swelling persist despite other types of arthritis treatment. Doctors prescribe prednisone, a corticosterioid, when the hormone it is similar to that is produced by the adrenal glands is not produced in sufficient amounts naturally by the body.

As an arthritis medicine, drug companies make prednisone available in pill or liquid form. The liquid form is often a concentration that must be mixed with fruit juice or soft foods such as yogurt. Most commonly taken in the morning, this arthritis relief medicine helps with joint pain, redness, swelling, and tenderness when less-aggressive treatment fails. However, the side effects of prednisone must be cautioned against, though these do not occur often. Some of these include:

    – weight gain
    – mood swings
    – bruising easily
    – cataracts
    – indigestion
    – thinning of the skin
    – thinning of the bones
    – immune-system suppression
    – high blood pressure
    – muscle weakness

Because of these potential side effects, prednisone rarely rates as a first line of defense as a pain relief arthritis medication. Allergic reactions to aspirin and other drugs, fungal infections, stomach ulcers, and pregnancy also preclude the use of prednisone.