Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

A condition that usually shows its signs just before menstruation, Premenstrual Syndrome or PMS affects a woman’s emotions, behavior and physical health on certain days around her cycle. It is a very common condition; more than 90% of women are affected by its symptoms, but its cause remainsunknow.

What are the symptoms of PMS?

Premenstrual syndrome begins around the 14th day of the cycle, when the ovaries release an egg and can last for 7 days after bleeding has begun. Menstruation or bleeding usually begins on the 28th day of your cycle. More than 80% of women experience symptoms that does not take a toll on their general ability to function as the symptoms are mild. Possible symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain and bloating
  • Acne
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Emotional outburst
  • Soreness of breasts
  • Food cravings
  • Fatigue
  • Back pain

Coping with PMS

For a doctor to be able to diagnose this condition, the symptoms must impair an aspect of your life as the causative factor is unknown. It is recommended that you consult a doctor if your symptoms occur frequently or don’t go away and start affecting your everyday functioning. Your doctor will want to know your medical history and check for thyroid or other gynaecological problems to rule out any other conditions that maybe causing the symptoms.

Although there is no cure for PMS, there are several steps that are recommended to help ease the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.

  • Improved diet with more fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Increased intake of fluids to manage bloating.
  • Regular exercise
  • Stress management
  • Supplements like vitamins and minerals to cope with mood swings and cramping.
  • Pain medications

It is best to consult with your gynaecologist to find out what methods will help alleviate your symptoms.

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