NICE supports CBT for menopause anxiety

File:Symptoms of menopause (raster).png

A new draft guideline from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) suggests that Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) should be more widely available to women who experience low mood and anxiety related to the menopause.

Here at my Bexhill practice I see many women with low mood and anxiety associated with the menopause. It is estimated that somewhere in the region of 80 per cent of women experience some symptoms during menopause and these may continue for several years. For one in ten women symptoms can last as long as twelve years.

The new guideline suggests that a combination of hormone replacement therapy and psychological therapies such as CBT can help with low mood. While the guideline does not support other non-pharmaceutical treatments, such as herbalism, there is evidence for the effectiveness of genistein and red clover. However, there are concerns about the safety of these two treatments.

CBT is also effective for menopausal anxiety related to hormonal changes. Psychological symptoms are very common and can impact on personal, social and professional lives. The use of antidepressant medication such as SSRIs/SNRIs is not recommended as a first-line treatment for low mood associated with the menopause, except where women may be experiencing clinical depression. Primarily this is because of adverse side effects and because low mood may be the result of hormonal changes.

Until next time. Steve

You may wish to know that Steve is now offering therapy sessions via Skype Please contact us through our website @

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Steve Clifford                                                                                                                           Senior Accredited Integrative Psychotherapist.                                                                       Accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist.

References: Therapy Today/ 2015

Draft guideline:


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