Natural menopause is a normal and expected transition in a woman's life cycle. Most women will not experience severe difficulties, but preconceptions about the climacterium are likely to influence how well it is tolerated. Although most community studies have not shown an increase in mood disorders among postmenopausal women, there may be an increase in the 5 years preceding menopause. Mood disorders are more likely to occur in surgically menopausal women and in women with previous episodes of depression.
It is likely that estrogen therapy has mood-lifting properties by way of decreasing hot flushes and vaginal dryness. It is also probable that estrogen has mood stabilizing properties in surgically menopausal women.