Premenstrual Syndrome Symptoms and Treatment
Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) Causes, Symptoms and Treatment:
What is premenstrual syndrome (PMS)?
Premenstrual syndrome symptoms and treatment. Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a group of symptoms linked to the menstrual cycle. PMS symptoms occur 1 to 2 weeks before your period (menstruation or monthly bleeding) starts. The symptoms usually go away after you start bleeding. PMS can affect menstruating women of any age and the effect is different for each woman. For some people, PMS is just a monthly bother. For others, it may be so severe that it makes it hard to even get through the day. PMS goes away when your monthly periods stop, such as when you get pregnant or go through menopause.
What are the symptoms of PMS?
A great variety of symptoms have been attributed to PMS. The most frequent mood-related symptoms of PMS include:
- anger and irritability,
- oversensitivity, and
- exaggerated mood swings.
The most frequent physical signs and symptoms of PMS include:
- bloating (due to fluid retention),
- weight gain,
- sleep disturbances with sleeping too much or too little (insomnia), and appetite changes with overeating or food cravings.
What causes PMS?
The causes of PMS are not clear, but several factors may be involved. Changes in hormones during the menstrual cycle seem to be an important cause. These changing hormone levels may affect some women more than others. Chemical changes in the brain may also be involved. Stress and emotional problems, such as depression, do not seem to cause PMS, but they may make it worse. Some other possible causes include:
- Low levels of vitamins and minerals.
- Eating a lot of salty foods, which may cause you to retain (keep) fluid.
- Drinking alcohol and caffeine, which may alter your mood and energy level.
What is the treatment for PMS?
Many things have been tried to ease the symptoms of PMS. No treatment works for every woman. You may need to try different ones to see what works for you. Some treatment options include:
- Lifestyle changes
- Alternative therapies
If your PMS isn’t so bad that you need to see a doctor, some lifestyle changes may help you feel better. Below are some steps you can take that may help ease your symptoms.
Exercise regularly. Each week, you should get:
- Two hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity;
- One hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity; or
- A combination of moderate and vigorous-intensity activity; and
- Eat healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Avoid salt, sugary foods, caffeine, and alcohol, especially when you’re having PMS symptoms.
- Get enough sleep. Try to get about 8 hours of sleep each night.
- Find healthy ways to cope with stress. Talk to your friends, exercise, or write in a journal. Some women also find yoga, massage, or relaxation therapy helpful.
- Don’t smoke.
PMS – Chaste Berry Vinegar
Brownish-black chaste berries (Vitex agnus-castus) contain remarkable hormone-regulating substances, which have been shown to be effective in alleviating symptoms of PMS. This recipe for chaste berry vinegar can help minimize PMS-related symptoms, such as backache, stomach cramps, breast tenderness, irritability, and mood swings.
- Cider vinegar – ¾ cup or 200ml
- Chaste berries, fresh or dried – ½ cup or 50g
- Pour the vinegar over the berries in a jar and seal.
- Shake every day for 2 weeks.
- Strain and return to jar.
- To use, take 1 tsp every day.
- Do not use if pregnant.
- Keeps for 6 months in a dark place.