Menopause is a significant life stage that can bring about a host of physical and psychological changes. Among the many topics of interest and concern is the impact of menopause on memory and cognitive function. Let’s explore a common myth and clarify with facts:


Myth: Menopause leads to permanent and significant memory loss.


Fact: While some women may experience memory lapses or moments of forgetfulness during menopause, this is typically temporary and not indicative of permanent memory loss. The hormonal changes that occur during menopause, particularly fluctuations in estrogen, can affect cognitive functions, including memory, concentration, and processing speed. However, these cognitive changes are usually mild and temporary. Research suggests that most women’s cognitive abilities bounce back or stabilize after this transitional period. Furthermore, lifestyle factors such as regular physical activity, mental stimulation, a healthy diet, and adequate sleep can support cognitive health during and after menopause.


It’s essential to differentiate between the normal, mild cognitive changes associated with menopause and more serious conditions like dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. The latter are characterized by significant memory loss that interferes with daily life and is not typical of the menopausal transition. If memory loss is severe or worsening, it’s crucial to consult a healthcare provider to rule out other underlying conditions.  Currently, there is research under investigation on the length of nighttime hot flashes and cognitive changes.  Please continue to follow our website and the menopause society for updates on this current literature. Thurston (2024) recently published nighttime vasomotor symptoms may be a marker of women at risk of Alzheimers. Longitudinal studies that investigate the association of nighttime hot flashes and increased cognitive decline toward developing Alzheimer’s Disease are underway


In conclusion, while menopause can bring about changes in memory and cognitive function, these changes are usually mild and temporary. Understanding this can help alleviate concerns and encourage a focus on overall brain health through a balanced lifestyle and proactive management of menopausal symptoms.


Thurston, R., Maki, P., Chang, Y., et al. (2024). Menopausal vasomotor symptoms and plasma Alzheimer disease biomarkers. AM J Obstet Gynecol, 230(3), 3421-3428.DOI: 10.1016/j.ajog.2023.11.002


Dr. Mia Chorney

Co-Founder & Chief Product Officer TPT Inc.