New Research Shows Women Report Feeling Less Stress As They Age

Less stess the older we get

A new study tells us that women feel less stress as they grow older.

Isn’t that good news?

Hallelujah! Sayonara stress. 👋 We won’t miss you.

That may sound a little bit too simplistic and unfortunately, it is. However, nothing can detract from the findings of the Study of Women’s Health. They ascertained that women in midlife reported less perceived stress. What’s more they felt more confident and in control of their ability to cope with life’s stressors.

The research found that menopausal status wasn’t a factor.

“For modern women 40-65 years of age, these middle years are marked by the potential for profound social and physiological changes.

Households are changing, with children leaving and ‘boomerang’ children returning. Ageing parents may require more care and workplace stress may increase with the attainment of seniority, additional job strain and increasing time demands. The menopausal transition – a period beginning in the early 40s – can bring hot flushes, mood changes and disrupted sleep cycles. (NB: our interpretation of scientific terms for your reading ease.) Though the ‘midlife crisis’ has been largely debunked, the midlife appears to be a period ripe for stress,” notes the study.

The study writers summed up midlife for women very well above so the results weren’t predictable.

The research was conducted on a cross-section of just over 3,000 women from the US. It was cross-referenced with similar studies in the UK and Australia (you can find the full details here). The average age of the women was 62. At the conclusion of the study period stress had declined regardless of socioeconomic factors. Although – not surprisingly – education levels and financial information did play a part in overall levels.

All in all, it’s good news for women in midlife. 😀.

Click here to go to the study.

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Post-menopause


This is the time when menstruation is well and truly over, the ovaries have stopped producing high levels of sex hormones and for many ladies, perimenopause symptoms subside.

Estrogen has protective qualities and the diminished levels mean organs such as your brain, heart and bones become more vulnerable. It’s also a key lubricant so your lips may become drier, your joints less supple and your vagina might be drier. In addition, your thyroid, digestion, insulin, cortisol and weight may alter.

At this juncture, a woman might experience an increase in the signs of reduced estrogen but she should have a decrease of perimenopause symptoms. That said, some women will experience symptoms like hot flushes for years or even the rest of their lives.

Perimenopause

Peri = ‘near’

Most females begin to experience the symptoms of perimenopause in their mid-forties. Your progesterone levels decline from your mid-30s but it’s generally from around 40 that the rest of your sex hormones begin to follow suit. 

Perimenopause is a different experience for every woman and some women may barely notice it. The first indicators are usually changes to the monthly cycle. This means that for some ladies, this can be accompanied by things like sore breasts, mood swings, weight gain around the belly, and fatigue as time goes on.

For those with symptoms it can be a challenging time physically, mentally and emotionally.

Importantly, perimenopause lasts – on average – four to 10 years. The transition is usually a gradual process and many women enter perimenopause without realising.