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Aging: Menopause Interventions for "The Change"
Menopause continuing education psychologist CEUs

Section 7
Track #7 - Effective Steps to Surviving a Dramatic Mood Swing

CEU Question 7 | CE Test | Table of Contents | Geriatric & Aging
Psychologist CEs, Counselor CEUs, Social Worker CEUs, MFT CEUs

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On the last track, we discussed three concepts of memory loss in menopausal clients.  These three concepts menopausal memory loss included:  poor verbal memory; brain fog; and change in thinking styles.

On this track, we will present three strategies that menopausal clients can use to help them cope with the day-to-day.  These daily menopausal coping methods include:  Watching What You Wear; Going with the Mood Swing; and Lifeline.

3 Strategies to Help Cope

#1 Watching What You Wear
The first daily menopausal coping method deals with hot flashes and mood swings and is called "Watching What You Wear."  Although hot flashes are unpredictable and almost impossible to prevent, wearing certain materials can ease the symptom when it does arise.  Natural fibers breathe better than synthetics, which helps when in the throes of a hot flash.  I suggest that my clients wear layers so that they can peel off outer garments when a hot flash hits and put the layers back on once the chill sets in.  Loose-fitting clothes also usually help the body cool off faster. 

I usually advise that they avoid restrictive clothing such as turtlenecks and also to stay away from thicker and irritating materials such as wool that may become itchy with sweat.  Also, this technique is helpful for women with low self-esteem due to mood swings and sudden depression.  I ask that my clients spend a little bit of extra money in order to buy high quality clothing that will wear nicely and give the client an extra boost of self-esteem.  This can help in a mood swing as the client may feel less self-conscious about herself.  Think of your menopausal client.  Could a change in wardrobe relieve her hot flashes?  What about mood swings?

#2 Going with the Mood Swing
The second daily menopausal coping method deals with mood swings and is called "Going with the Mood Swing."  This method includes several smaller techniques that help a client survive a drastic mood swing.  I give my clients the following list to consider when they know they are going through a severe mood change.  These smaller coping techniques include the following:

  1. Put things into perspective.  Yes, you may feel miserable, but remember that you often feel good and that what you’re going through now won’t last forever.  Try to focus on the positive—the important, enduring things in your life.
  2. Go with the flow.  Although it may get old, it does help to relax.  Talk with others, friends, a support group, or family members.
  3. Analyze what sets you off.  You may be able to avoid situations or triggers that make you depressed or upset, or at least understand why you feel the way you do.
  4. Exercise is a natural way of releasing tension and raising your spirits.  When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, which act like a natural upper.  In addition, you’ll feel better about how you look, and may reduce physical symptoms as well.

Think of your client who experiences severe mood swings due to menopause.  Would she benefit from these "Going with the Mood Swing" techniques?

#3 Lifeline
In addition to "Watching What You Wear" and "Going with the Mood Swing", the third daily menopausal coping method deals with relationships and is called "Lifeline."  Because many of the symptoms of menopause result in strained or decreased communication between partners, the client often does not receive the support she needs.  In this technique, I ask my clients to think of someone in their lives who they are close to and who can help them when they begin to feel the weight of their menopausal symptoms. 

I also remind them to consider the sex of their "lifeline," because the two different genders react differently to problems.  Women tend to sit and empathize while listening intently.  Men, however, will listen to a problem and try to think of a solution.  If no solution readily presents itself, men will clam up emotionally.  If a client’s lifeline is her husband, which it often is, I suggest that she offers solutions so that her husband does not feel that he has to think of resolutions by himself. 

Susan, age 49, had chosen her husband Robert as her lifeline.  Lately, Susan had become increasingly irritable which confused Robert.  In order to clear up this confusion, Susan decided to talk to her husband about solutions to the tension.  When she sat him down to talk to him about her menopausal problems, she stated, "I know I’ve been difficult lately, and I’m sorry.  I’ve been going through a lot of changes, and I really need your help.  It would be really nice if we could cuddle a little bit when I get so crazy.  I just need to feel wanted."  Think of your Susan.  Who would she reach out to as a lifeline?

On this track, we discussed three strategies that menopausal clients can use to help them cope with the day-to-day.  These daily menopausal coping methods included:  Watching What You Wear; Going with the Mood Swing; and Lifeline.

Online Continuing Education QUESTION 7
What are three strategies that menopausal clients can use to help them cope with the day-to-day To select and enter your answer go to CE Test.

This CD set has covered such topics as: denial; malaise; fear of a decrease in sexual drive; stress; emotional symptoms; memory loss; and daily coping methods.

I hope you have found the information to be both practical and beneficial. We appreciate that you've chosen the Healthcare Training Institute as a means for receiving your continuing education credit.

Other Home Study Courses we offer include: Treating Teen Self Mutilation; Treating Post Holiday Let-Down and Depression; Living with Secrets: Treating Childhood Sexual Trauma; Interventions for Anxiety Disorders with Children and Adults; and Balancing the Power Dynamic in the Therapeutic Relationship. 

I wish you the best of luck in your practice. Thank you.  Please consider us for future home study needs.
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