If you are married, then you are no stranger to your wife’s mood swings. You may, at times and most inexplicably, find her irritable, anxious or downright moody. This is because she regularly suffers from what is known as premenstrual syndrome, commonly known as PMS.
PMS affects a woman both physically and emotionally, and usually occurs during certain days of her menstrual cycle, mostly preceding her menses. What is premenstrual syndrome needs to be understood to overcome it.
PMS – a common experience
PMS is so common that around 85 percent of menstruating women suffer from it. PMS starts displaying its symptoms about five to 11 days prior to menstruation, but the moment periods begin, it vanishes.
Why this exactly happens is still a mystery, but what is known is it has something to do with the change in the levels of sex hormone and serotonin at the onset of the menstrual cycle. Increased sex hormones – estrogen and progesterone – may cause mood swings, irritability and anxiety. Fluctuating serotonin levels also affects the moods, thoughts and emotions.
PMS – risk factors
Although PMS is common, but some women are more at risk of suffering from it. Let us see what factors lead to this:
- Women having history of depression, mood disorders and even PMS.
- Women suffering from domestic violence, physical and emotional trauma and substance abuse.
- Women diagnosed with dysmenorrhea (painful periods), major depressive disorder, seasonal affective disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and schizophrenia.
PMS – physical and psychological effects
PMS can affect women adversely in varying degrees. Physically, PMS can cause headaches, acne, sore breasts, abdominal pain or bloating, constipation, diarrhea and fatigue. On the psychological level, women may suffer from irritability, sadness, anxiety, depression and emotional outbursts.
They can also crave for food, especially sweets, may become sensitive to light or sound, may get affected by changes in sleep pattern. However, not all symptoms are serious enough to see a doctor.
Premenstrual Syndrome Symptoms Alleviation:
Although women cannot cure PMS at their level, they can certainly take steps to make mild PMS symptoms less severe by…
…taking adequate sleep and exercise.
…countering abdominal bloating by increased intake of fluids.
…restoring overall health and energy by a balanced diet and shunning excesses. Go slow on caffeine and alcohol.
…reducing cramps and mood swings by supplements, such as Vitamin B6, folic acid, calcium and magnesium.
PMS – medical intervention
Women may need to see a doctor, if the symptoms persist and start affecting their daily lives. PMS is diagnosed, if there are two or more recurrent symptoms that are severe enough to cause impairment; their occurrence fits into the time frame; and the symptoms disappear between menses and ovulation.
An excellent way to determine PMS is to note the symptoms and the monthly menstruation cycle using a diary and a calendar. Symptoms appearing at the same time each month point towards PMS.
Menopause symptoms can make a woman’s life hell. However, tips to alleviate these symptoms help in easing her pain and suffering, both physical and mental.