Is Anxiety Causing Your Night Sweats?
In this two part series, Sally Perkins, writer for for SeniorAdvisor, opens with a guest blog on menopause, night sweats, and anxiety. Last year, we met with Dr. Kevin Chapman to discuss anxiety and night terrors related to PTSD. Anxiety, no matter one’s age, is a normal bodily reaction to stresses. It’s all about how we deal with our anxiety when it occurs that matters.
The Anxiety-Menopause Connection: How To Stop It Stressing You Out
You wake up in the middle of the night, drenched in sweat and feeling anxious. Are you suffering from panic or is this just part and parcel of post menopausal life? There’s actually a strong connection between menopause and anxiety because they share symptoms, such as night sweats, hot flashes, and feelings of doom. Many studies confirm that anxiety is boosted during menopause and can affect quality of life.
When you go through menopause, you experience fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone hormones. This has a direct influence on your emotional and mental wellbeing, and can cause feelings of anxiety. Sometimes anxiety occurs on its own, though. Anxiety is known as a “geriatric giant” because it’s become so common among seniors – twice as common as dementia and at least four times more common than major depression.
Common Anxiety Causes
There are many reasons why anxiety can strike in one’s senior years. Studies show that American seniors over the age of 60 tend to worry about memory loss and health the most, followed by finances. Anxiety can also be a side effect of certain medications, such as inhalers or steroids. Some chronic medical problems in themselves can lead to anxiety, such as heart disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), diabetes and thyroid disease.
Over time, untreated anxiety can become an obstacle to quality of life. Older adults who experience depression and anxiety often have more severe symptoms of both conditions, according to Mental Health America. That’s why it’s vital to get it under control.
How To Treat Anxiety
Treating anxiety shouldn’t include drugs if this can be avoided. According to Harvard Health Publications, older patients are more prone to side effects of medication. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a better option.
However, there are many other things you can do to take control of your anxiety – and they benefit any menopausal symptoms too.
We also spoke to Dr. Kevin Chapman about night sweats and anxiety. Check it out!
As always, consult your physician concerning any medical advice or treatment. Sleep well, sleep wicked.