Updated: Mar 11
Anxiety is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide array of disorders that generally result from worrying, fear, apprehension, and nervousness. Such feelings will most likely have an impact on your feelings and behaviors and can result into a variety of physical symptoms, including shortness of breath, dizziness, vomiting, and stomach aches, among others. According to experts, there are different causes of anxiety, including stress, lack of sleep, trauma, lack of oxygen, side effects from education, substance abuse, alcoholism, genetics, health problems, and hormones. The rest of this article will be focused on exploring how hormones, specifically amongst women, can have an effect on anxiety.
Difficulty of Tracing the Cause
While hormones or an imbalance of such can be regarded as one of the most common causes of anxiety, it is important to keep in mind that such is impossible to be verified, especially with a self-diagnosis. More often than not, you will need to have a consultation with a medical professional to trace its root causes, as well as the subsequent steps to have it treated. Even if the hormones can be the culprit, such may not be the lone reason. In most cases, the apparent symptoms will be the basis of determining whatever is causing your anxiety – whether it is hormones or anything else.
Hormonal Imbalances that Can Trigger Anxiety
Generally speaking, women are more prone towards suffering from anxiety as against men, and this is basically because of the female hormones. Anxiety in women is most common during their menstrual period, which is a result of the hormonal imbalance that they are experiencing. During menstruation, there is a fluctuation in estrogen and progesterone, which can all have an effect on appetite, digestion, and energy level, which, collectively, can alter mood, and hence, possibly leading into anxiety. The discomfort and the pain experienced during menstruation can also exacerbate anxiety.
More so, hormonal imbalance amongst women is also experienced during pregnancy, which makes it another trigger for anxiety. This is considered to be the king of all the hormonal changes that are experienced by women. The fact that you are pregnant can already make you feel anxious, and this is even escalated by your hormonal changes, which is at its peak during the said period. During pregnancy, women are generally irritable and experience various panic attacks, especially when they are about to give birth.
Anxiety is also experienced because of hormonal imbalance resulting from thyroid hormone, which constitutes a serious health problem. When you have an overactive thyroid, one of the consequences would be feeling more anxious in various situations. When you have more than enough thyroid hormones in your body, you can experience increase in heart rate and hyperventilation, which are all physical symptoms of anxiety. On the other hand, if the thyroid is below the normal level, your brain will be affected and this can also consequently lead into anxiety.
The Gray Line
While there is no doubt that anxiety is often connected with hormonal imbalance, this should not be singled out as there are other factors that can be blamed. Additionally, many also believe that hormones do not necessarily lead into anxiety, but they make anxiety worse. The blurred connection between the two remains to be a big debate in the medical world. For most women, however, they always have their hormones to point out as a reason for their mood swings and the rest of the days where they feel more anxious than in other instances.
Treating Anxiety as a Result of Hormonal Imbalance
As always, the best thing to do is to have professional consultation to know if you are really suffering from anxiety and to identify the treatment options that will prove to be perfect. For most health experts, one of the best things that can be done is to get enough sleep, which will help you to escape stress and possibly correct your hormonal imbalance. Regular exercise and having a proper diet will also be helpful. There are also people who resort into the use of hormonal drugs, but this should be done with caution and only with recommendations from a medical professional. At its worst, taking medications without proper diagnosis can only exacerbate your anxiety rather than having it cured.