As human beings, we experience a broad variety of emotions. Sometimes these feelings follow a simple and predictable path. At other times, they shift direction and elevate faster than a brand-new roller coaster. Such situations — when you quickly go from happiness to anger (or vice versa) — are known as mood swings.
And if you’re the kind of person who experiences lots of mood swings, you may have wondered what to do about them.
Possible Causes of Mood Swings
“Internal changes that take place throughout our lives influence our mood, but it’s not just what’s happening inside that determines how we feel; we also respond to what’s happening around us,” Nancy Schimelpfening writes for VeryWellMind.com.
“External changes to our lives and in our environments, such as increased stress at home, school, or work, can also influence our emotions.”
In other words, moods are constantly fluctuating and changing … and some mood swings are totally justifiable. For example, your mood could suddenly pivot from frustrated with life to exhilarated if you win $1 million on a scratch-off lottery ticket.
It’s the ones that can’t be explained so easily that we have to become more aware of. If you seem to suffer mood swings frequently and without warning, this could be a sign of an underlying condition that needs to be addressed by a licensed healthcare practitioner.
Potential causes include:
- Illness or injury. It’s common for individuals with chronic illnesses and injuries to experience mood swings. Conditions that are known to have such an effect include diabetes, sleep disorders, multiple sclerosis, thyroid disorders, and Parkinson’s disease.
- Diet and/or GI issues. An inadequate diet can lead to nutritional deficiencies and fluctuating blood sugar levels. The same goes for certain gastrointestinal issues and digestive disorders that affect the body’s ability to absorb nutrients properly. Conditions like Celiac disease and leaky gut syndrome are associated with mood swings.
- Sleep. We all know how important sleep is to feeling good. Chronic sleep deprivation can lead to intense mood fluctuations and other unwanted psychiatric issues.
- Medications. Certain prescription medications can affect a person’s mood. Even medicines that are designed to calm us — such as antidepressants and mood stabilizers — may have the opposite effect for some individuals.
- Mental illness. In some cases, mood swings can be attributable to mental illnesses and traumatic brain injuries. These may include bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, Alzheimer’s, depression, and stroke.
Self-diagnosing the root cause of mood swings isn’t recommended. It’s much safer to see a doctor if you suspect there’s a key underlying factor that causes your changes.
Four Tips for Managing Your Mood Swings
In addition to seeing a doctor to obtain an official diagnosis and treatment plan, here are four simple tips you can employ to manage mood swings and reclaim your life.
1. Seek Out Balance
Balance will always be an operative term. Assess your lifestyle and look for any areas where you do not feel stabilized, and do your best to bring any extremes back to a baseline standard. You especially need balance in terms of sleep, diet, work, exercise, and relationships.
2. Address Underlying Issues
Which underlying health issues do you have that could have an impact on your moods? As previously mentioned, a leaky gut might be to blame. By taking a leaky gut support supplement, you could bring balance back to your gut and ensure you get all the benefits of a healthy diet. If a condition such as Celiac disease is to blame, a switch to a gluten-free diet could do wonders. Whatever the case, don’t let any underlying issues control you.
3. Avoid Stimulants
If you experience mood swings, you should avoid ingesting anything that’s likely to alter your mood in any way. This includes all stimulants, such as alcohol and caffeine. You’re much better off drinking water and caffeine-free tea.
4. Practice Self-Care
Show yourself some kindness and practice regular self-care. This might entail exercise, meditation, pampering yourself, or taking a nap. The objective is to give your mind and body sufficient space to rejuvenate on a daily basis.
Schedule a Visit With Your Doctor
Moods and feelings are normal, so we shouldn’t revile them. However, rapid, unprovoked shifts from one extreme to the other are unhealthy and dangerous.
If you experience sudden mood swings that can’t be neutralized through simple actions like the ones highlighted in this article, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor.
This content is sponsored by Larry Alton.
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