Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)

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Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a common condition that usually affects women when going through the ovulation process. Several symptoms experienced by women during this period are very unpleasant such as a combination of psychological, physical, emotional and mood disturbances after the ovulation period. This unpleasant feeling usually disappears with menstrual flow. The severity of the syndrome varies from one woman to the other. Some women find it hard to engage in any activities because of PMS while and others are able to go through their day normally.

A severe form of PMS which is called premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) can only affect some women and capable of causing a considerable loss of function. If this condition is suspected, a doctor should be consulted.

Common behavioral and emotional symptoms of premenstrual syndrome

Premenstrual syndrome
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a common condition that usually affects women when going through the ovulation process.
  • Difficulty in concentrating
  • Increased anxiety and tension
  • Changes in appetite, cravings for a certain foods or even aversions
  • Severe irritability or outright anger
  • Lack of concentration
  • Crying bouts and spells
  • Social withdrawal
  • Difficulty in falling asleep, fitful sleep or sleeping disorders
  • Depression and mood swings

Common physical symptoms of premenstrual syndrome

  • Breast tenderness
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Gain in weight due to accumulation of fluid in the body
  • Severe weakness, fatigue and tiredness
  • Severe headaches
  • Outbreaks of acne
  • Joints and muscle pain
  • Bloating of the abdominal area

Factors that can cause PMS

  • Deficiency in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients
  • Suffering from chronic depression
  • Stress
  • Hormonal changes
  • Low levels of serotonin which is a neurotransmitter or brain chemical

Treatment and home remedies of premenstrual syndrome

  • Minimize salt and salty foods in order to help minimize bloating and accumulation of fluids
  • Eat smaller frequent meals such as 5 to 6 small meals, instead of three large meals to help minimize bloating and the sensation of fullness.
  • Eat foods high in carbohydrate such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
  • Eat foods high in calcium content or take a daily supplement of calcium.
  • Avoid consumption of alcohol and caffeine
  • Perform some exercises such as brisk walking, swimming, cycling and other aerobic activities for at least 30 minutes. This helps improve the overall health and lessen the symptoms such as fatigue and a depressed mood.
  • Get plenty of sleep and rest.
  • Perform some muscle relaxation or deep-breathing exercises since it helps in minimizing anxiety, headaches and insomnia.
  • Perform head massage to help relax the body.
  • Avoid drinking tea, coffee, carbonated drinks or alcohol since they make the condition worse.
  • Maintain any hobby such as reading, listening to music and painting since these can help calming and relaxing the body.
  • Consume foods high in nutrients such as vitamin B6, magnesium and Vitamin E.

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