For many women PMS is a regular influence on their physical and psychological well-being. The associated symptoms often impact severely upon personal and employment relations. At this time relationships can experience considerable tension, a number of relationships break down with the main cause, extreme mood changes that occur each month. It puts an immense strain on all relationships. Partners often find it difficult to deal with menstrual symptoms. . At this stage women affected by PMS value most supportive partners. According to recent studies over 70 per cent of relationships are affected to some extent by PMS.
Sign & Symptoms:
It includes both physical & mental symptoms, which varies from woman to woman. Make a complete record of the symptom occurs in every menstrual cycle with dates. The symptoms which are commonly present are:
(1). Anxiety: irritable, crying without reason, verbally and sometimes physically abuse, feeling "out of control".
(2). Depression: confused, clumsy, forgetful, withdrawn, fearful, paranoid, suicidal thoughts and rarely suicidal actions.
(3). Cravings: food cravings, usually for sweets or chocolate; diary products including cheese, an on occasion, alcohol or food in general.
(4). Heaviness or Headache: Fluid retention leading to headache, breast tenderness, abdominal bloating and weight gain.
Dietary habits, exercises and changes in lifestyle given below can give some relief:
1). Before and after a week of menstruation, a balanced diet consisting of adequate intake of raw foods and liquid is recommended.
2). Take cool food and liquids.
3). Eat food without excess spice.
4). Avoid yoghurt, cheese, sour cream and butter milk.
5). Avoid hot drinks like tea, coffee, cocoa, alcohol and colas. Avoid sugarcane juice and honey as well.
6). Reduce pungent and sour vegetables such as; tomatoes, onion, eggplant, carrots, beets, garlic, radish, etc.
7). Very hot seasonings like chili peppers and cayenne should be avoided.
8). If necessary, consult your doctor and take iron, calcium supplements.
9). Avoid heat and too much exposure to the sun.
10). Avoid situations that can cause physical and mental stress.
11). Exercise regularly (brisk walking, cycling, swimming or other aerobic activity), get enough sleep and don’t smoke.
Asana: Few yoga asanas are also known to help –
(i). Pawanamuktasana part 2&3 (abdominal and shakti bandth), Bhujangasana, dhanurasana, shalabhasana, chakrasana, ushtrasana, paschimotanasana, sarvangasana, and halasana.
(ii). Pranayama techniques such as abdominal breathing, nadi shodhana, bhramari and ujjayi also help.
Approximately, out of 40 million women suffering from PMS, 5 million require medical treatment to relieve physical and mental discomfort. The medicines and supplements which are used commonly are:
Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). If taken before period, NSAIDs such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve) relieves cramps and breast discomfort.
Oral contraceptives. To stop ovulation and to control hormonal swings.
Antidepressants. Antidepressants are given in order to reduce symptoms such as fatigue, food cravings and sleep problems. These drugs are generally taken daily. But for some women with PMS, use of antidepressants may be limited to the two weeks before menstruation begins.
Calcium. Taking 1,000 milligrams (mg) of dietary and supplemental calcium daily may reduce the physical and psychological symptoms of PMS.
Magnesium. Taking 400 mg of supplemental magnesium daily may help to reduce fluid retention, breast tenderness and bloating in women with premenstrual syndrome.
Vitamin B-6. A daily dose of 50 to 100 mg of vitamin B-6 may help some women with troublesome PMS symptoms.
Vitamin E. This vitamin (400 international units daily) is taken to relieve symptoms of PMS, by reducing the production of prostaglandin, hormone-like substances that cause cramps and breast tenderness.
Folic acid. Take a multivitamin every day that includes 400 micrograms of folic acid.
In homeopathy there are many medicines which are very effective in PMS, of which some are listed below:
(1). Folliculinum (Ovarian extract, hormone) - It is used in congestive headache and pre menstrual migraine with paleness of face. Alternating states of excitement and depression, which aggravates before menses. Abdominal pain before menses. Breasts become extremely swollen and painful, sensitive to touch before menses and the pain reduces with the onset of menstruation.
(2).Pulsatilla- It is given to woman who is gentle, tearful, touchy, and timid in nature. Fainting and nervousness in young girls before they have menstruation; it helps to start menses.
(3). Sabal serrulata: It is used in women with irritability and depression, who easily gets angry, indifference to others need, concerned only with her own sufferings, who wants to be alone. Breasts are tender, swollen, sore, and itchy, with sharp pain in them.
(4). Calcarea carbonica: PMS with fatigue, anxiety, water-retention and weight gain, tender breasts, digestive upsets, and headaches. Periods often come too early and last too long. All the symptoms accompanied with excessive perspiration, with cravings for sweets and eggs.
(5). Sabina: Hysterical and morbid anxiety about health, with much irritability, for women who can’t tolerate music. Other indications are suppressed menses with offensive leucorrhoea, discharge of blood between periods, etc.
(6). Sepia: Absence of joy, used in tall slim women, swallow faced, anemic and weak; Sometimes they become hysterical, or weeping and gentle, but later bad tempered, excitable and obstinate, discouraged about life. Colic before and during menses with other aches and pains and irritable mood. Aversion to opposite sex. Shooting or burning pains in breast before and during menses.
(7). Tilia: Women with weeping disposition, who dreads society and work, irritable. Uterus feels pressed down, with spasmodic pains before a period.
(8). Cyclamen: Sudden alternating mood, cheery to sad. Sleepiness, morose, and lassitude. Menses too early with some relief of depressive symptoms.
(9). Chamomilla: It is used in woman who is angry, irritable, and hypersensitive to pain. Cramping may come on, or be intensified, because of emotional upset. Flow can be very heavy, and the blood may look dark or clotted. Problems aggravates at night. External heat or exposure to wind may aggravate the symptoms, and the tension and discomfort are relived by motion.
(10). Other remedies are: Lachesis, bovista, lycopodium, luna, kreosote, nux vom, nat mur, cimicifuga (actea racemosa), lilium tig, veratrum alb, caullophylum, mag phos, colocynth, belladonna, aconite, kali phos,etc.