comscoreMood Swings

Mood Swings

Mood swings, a common symptom of menopause, are extreme and rapid changes in your emotional state.

Mood swings, often a symptom of menopause, are extreme and rapid changes in your emotional state. You can be happy one minute and angry the next or depressed for no reason at all.

Depression, sadness, frustration, irritation, and anger are the most common emotions linked to mood swings. When hormonal changes in your body affect the chemistry of your brain it can lead to these emotional changes.

Certain treatments for breast cancer can cause your hormone levels to go up or down and induce menopause. Breast cancer treatments, such as ovarian shutdown or removal and hormonal therapy medicines may also cause mood swings.

Other medicines can cause mood swings as well, including morphine, fentanyl, methadone, codeine, hydrocodone (one brand name: Vicodin), Demerol (chemical name: meperidine), and steroids.

Mood swings can also be caused by the daily ups and downs that can come with a breast cancer diagnosis and breast cancer treatment. After being diagnosed with breast cancer, it’s not unusual for some people to feel confident and capable one moment, and sad, distressed, or angry the next.


Managing mood swings

Your healthcare team or a mental health professional can help you figure out what may be causing the mood swings to see if any adjustments can be made.

Some people also find the following tips helpful:

  • Identify and avoid sources of stress that can cause changes in mood.

  • Exercise to help relieve stress, focus your energy, and balance your emotions—all of which can help ease mood swings.

  • Get plenty of rest. When sleep is disrupted or you don’t get enough sleep, it’s possible to feel anxious, angry, or irritable.

  • Eat healthy snacks and small meals throughout the day to give you energy and keep your blood sugar regulated. Hunger and varying blood sugar levels can lead to mood swings.

  • Consider complementary and holistic techniques such as yoga, meditation, massage, or acupuncture to relieve stress.

  • Talk about your emotions with friends, a counselor, or your doctor—talking can help you relieve some stress and may help you feel better.

— Last updated on July 26, 2022, 1:10 PM

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