Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) Causes and Symptoms

PUBLISHED ON February 15, 2020 Read TIME: 3 minutes VIEWS: 59

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a combination of symptoms that many women get about a week or two before their period.
It is a very common condition. Its symptoms affect more than 90 percent of menstruating women.

Researchers think that PMS happens in the days after ovulation because estrogen and progesterone levels begin falling dramatically if you are not pregnant. PMS symptoms go away within a few days after a woman’s period starts as hormone levels begin rising again.

SYMPTOMS

PMS symptoms are different for every woman.
Some women get their periods without any signs of PMS or only very mild symptoms. For others, PMS symptoms may be so severe that it makes it hard to do everyday activities like going to work or school. Severe PMS symptoms may be a sign of premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). PMS goes away when you no longer get a period, such as after menopause. After pregnancy, PMS might come back, but you might have different PMS symptoms.

Emotional or mental symptoms.

Tension or anxiety
Depressed mood
Crying spells
Mood swings and irritability or anger
Appetite changes and food cravings
Trouble falling asleep (insomnia)
Social withdrawal
Poor concentration
Change in libido

Physical signs and symptoms

Joint or muscle pain
Headache
Fatigue
Weight gain related to fluid retention
Abdominal bloating
Breast tenderness
Acne flare-ups
Constipation or diarrhea
Alcohol intolerance

PMDD signs and symptoms include depression, mood swings, anger, anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, difficulty concentrating, irritability and tension.

CAUSES
Researchers do not know exactly what causes PMS. Changes in hormone levels during the menstrual cycle may play a role. These changing hormone levels may affect some women more than others.

Easing the symptoms of PMS
Get regular aerobic physical activity throughout the month. Exercise can help with symptoms such as depression, difficulty concentrating, and fatigue.
•Try to get about eight hours of sleep each night. Lack of sleep is linked to depression and anxiety and can make PMS symptoms such as moodiness worse.
•Drink plenty of fluids to ease abdominal bloating
•Reduce stress, such as exercising, meditating and reading.
•Avoiding foods and drinks with caffeine, salt, and sugar in the two weeks before your period may lessen many PMS symptoms.
•Take supplements, such as folic acid, vitamin B-6, calcium, and magnesium to reduce cramps and mood swings.
•Don’t smoke.

You can take pain medication, such as ibuprofen or aspirin, to alleviate muscle aches, headaches, and stomach cramping. You can also try a diuretic to stop bloating and water weight gain. Take medications and supplements only as directed by and after speaking with your doctor.

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