A woman’s menstrual cycle is a natural part of life and should be regarded as such. Without it, we would not be able to reproduce and have children. As much as we appreciate this part of our womanhood, there are some things we’re not so grateful for. One of these is PMS or premenstrual syndrome. PMS was once thought to be a figment of women’s imagination, but no longer. There is plenty of medical proof to explain this problem. There are also plenty of things we can do to help the situation. Continue reading this article to see if any of these ideas will give you some much needed relief.
Unfortunately, there are more than 100 symptoms of PMS. This tells you how many problems women can have with this time of the month. Some of the most common problems are:
- Sore breasts
- Weight gain
Most women are very familiar with these symptoms but you may be wondering why you have these symptoms. There are two main reasons.
First, as you go through your cycle, your hormone levels change during the month depending on which phase you are in. It is these hormone changes that cause the migraines, sore breasts, weight gain, backache, bloating and cramping.
During the month, your serotonin levels also change. Serotonin is the brain chemical that helps to manage mood, sleep cycles, and your appetite. These changes cause you to have mood swings. You may be irritable, more aggressive, and angry for no reason. You can also experience food cravings just like when you’re pregnant.
As bothersome as the above mentioned symptoms are, things can actually be worse. Some women suffer from extreme PMS that is referred to as premenstrual dysphonic disorder. The acronym for this is PMDD.
When a woman has this, she often feels like she has completely lost control over her life and she often suffers from depression. She may withdraw from her family and friends and may reach a point where she just can’t cope with life anymore.
If you have the symptoms of PMDD, you need to talk with your doctor. PMDD is very serious and you will need medication to overcome it. You may be prescribed an anti-depressant if you suffer from PMDD. Anti-depressants will stabilize your serotonin levels.
One of the best things you can do to control your PMS symptoms is to make lifestyle changes. Change your diet and make it healthier by eating fresh fruits and vegetables and reducing your sugar intake and processed foods. Eat a diet that is rich in complex carbohydrates with fiber and protein.
Smoking and a large consumption of caffeine can also contribute to PMS symptoms. Do your best to cut back on the amount of caffeine to consume through coffee, tea, and soft drinks. If you smoke, try your best to quit not only for PMS relief but for your health in general.
If you have PMS problems like irregular bleeding, you need to see your doctor. Most likely, he will prescribe birth control pills for you. The birth control pills help to regulate your hormones and may help to get your symptoms under control.
There are also over the counter medicines that you can take to relieve back pain and cramping. Ask your doctor to get her opinion about which would be the best for you.
Many women don’t want to take medication or birth control pills due to the side effects so they try natural remedies. Natural treatments mainly consist of changing your lifestyle as mentioned before. Other natural recommendations include increasing your nutrients of vitamins A, C, and D. You might also try increasing your magnesium and calcium levels through improving your diet or with supplements.
If you would like to try herbs to control your symptoms, here are a few suggestions:
• Chamomile and Dandelion are natural diuretics and will help control bloating and swelling.
• Fennel and Sarsaparilla will help control headaches.
• Chamomile, Lavender, and peppermint are useful for mood swings.
• Kava Kava is good for cramping. This is a natural antispasmodic.
• Black Cohosh helps naturally lower your level of hormones that cause many PMS symptoms.
• Red Clover has isoflavones that are similar to estrogens.
Whether you choose to change your lifestyle and dietary habits or give over the counter medications or herbs a try, is up to you. Every woman is different and so what works for one woman will not necessarily work for you. Try some of these ideas and see which one gives you the most relief.