Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a complex health condition and around 20 to 30 % of women, in their reproductive years are known to suffer from it. PMS majorly affect women in 30 – 50 years of age, with symptoms arising 2 weeks prior to start of woman’s menstrual cycle, called as luteal phase of the cycle. The symptoms usually become more severe just 2 to 3 days before the period and get resolved after first or second day of the menses.
Women show a range of behavioral, physical and mental symptoms that are linked to the premenstrual phase of the cycle and interfere with regular functioning, referred as premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and under much severe cases, referred as premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). PMS cannot be prevented, but can be appropriately managed through proper treatment and guidance. Incorporation of a healthy lifestyle that includes diet, exercise and adequate amount of rest supports in better management of PMS symptoms.
Home And Medical Treatment Of PMS
Women with PMS should keep records of menstrual cycles with observable symptoms in a diary. Then employing certain lifestyle measures and home treatment, analyze the improvement of symptoms and judge, whether to go for medical treatment or not.
Incorporate Vitamin B6 And Calcium Supplements
Consume vitamin B6 and calcium at a dose of 50 mg to 100 mg, on daily basis as both these nutrients are essential for regulating endocrine system that secretes all hormones. Calcium helps to improve PMS symptoms and vitamin B6 lowers the physical symptoms as well PMS associated depression in women, when used regularly. Moreover, include diet rich in complex carbohydrates like raw fruits and vegetables, instead of simple sugars.
Reduce Sugar, Salt And Caffeine
Lower down consumption of sugar, salt and caffeine at least through the premenstrual phase of each cycle as these compounds influence physical and emotional symptoms of PMS like anxiety, insomnia, food cravings, bloating, pain and tension. Keeping them at minimal levels will relieve one from major PMS symptoms.
Exercise enhances blood circulation, physical strength and improves various hormonal processes. Including them as a daily part of the lives, relieves women from mood swings, tension and pain. Exercises have shown to remarkably reduce depression in PMS women.
Additionally, yoga and meditation should also be performed to manage stress in a better way, during the premenstrual phase. Even after continual treatment with home measures and healthy lifestyle, moderate to severe PMS symptoms may appear in certain cases, beyond 3 months period. Then medical treatment should be employed, after consultation with the doctor.
Make use of over the counter NSAIDs like ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen to relive symptoms of backache, cramps, headache, muscle pain and breast tenderness.
NSAIDs work best when consumed before the painful premenstrual period and continued through the premenstrual cycle. Certain antidepressant can be useful for severe anxiety or depression symptoms of PMS. Moreover, diuretic spironolactone can help in reducing fluid retention during PMS and can be administered, if advised by the doctor.
Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (ssri)
SSRI are the first choice of antidepressants that are prescribed for moderate to severe mood related and physical symptoms of PMS, including depression and aggression. Most women are known to gain by using SSRI on continual usage or on using these during premenstrual days. These need to be consumed as directed by the physician, based on the severity of symptoms and should never be self administered.