Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) + Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)

Most women experience some symptoms that they associate with their menstrual cycle each month. These may include physical or emotional changes that are often considered normal for “that time of the month”. Unfortunately for some women, these changes can be so extreme, they can affect their day and their ability to function. There are two types of these menstrual disorders: PMS and PMDD.

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS):

This is estimated to affect 3 to 4 out of menstruating women. Symptoms typically begin anywhere between 5-11 days before the start of the period. Symptoms usually disappear within the first few days of the cycle. This may be related to fluctuations in hormones, changes in neurotransmitter production, and higher levels of prostaglandins (a type of inflammatory cell).

Symptoms May Include:

Psychological/Emotional:

  • Irritability
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Sadness or depression
  • Anxiety
  • Changes in sleep/insomnia
  • Emotional/explosive outbursts
  • Difficulty concentrating

Physical:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Acne
  • Breast Tenderness
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Headaches/Migraines
  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal pain
  • Intense cramping
  • Back pain
  • Palpitations (tachycardia)
  • Sweet and/or salty cravings
  • Fatigue/lack of motivation

Causes May Include:

  • Hormonal fluctuations
  • Side effect of birth control
  • Poor dietary choices
  • Extremely low body weight
  • Increased stress

Your doctor will work with you to determine what the best treatment for you may be. After an in-depth appointment, we will work with you to determine what the best course of treatment should be based on YOUR needs.

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD):

This doesn’t affect as many women- only about 5% of menstruating women. However, the emotional/psychological changes that are a part of this condition are much more severe. These symptoms also show up within 2 weeks for the period beginning (luteal phase of the cycle), and symptoms typically subside when the period begins. This impairment can affect a woman’s ability to function and perform at work or home.

Symptoms May Include:

Psychological/Emotional:

  • Extreme anxiety
  • Depression
  • Anger
  • Severe mood swings
  • Difficulty thinking or concentrating
  • Panic attacks
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Binge eating
  • Insomnia
  • Crying spells

Physical:

  • Bloating
  • Extreme Cramping
  • Migraines/Headaches
  • Fatigue/Weakness

Causes May Include:

  • Undiagnosed Conditions
    • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
    • Fibromyalgia
    • Migraine Disorder
    • Depression/Bipolar Disorder or other psychiatric conditions
    • Anxiety or Panic Disorders

Treatment Considerations for PMS + PMDD:

  • Period tracking – to monitor symptoms throughout the month
  • Lifestyle changes – exercise habits, diet choices, reducing stress
  • Supplementation – Vitamins and minerals tailored to specific needs
  • Light therapy – to help improve moods and circadian cycles

Download Our Healthy Holiday Handbook

Our Healthy Holiday Handbook is filled with motivational tips to stick with your health goals through the holidays and some delicious and festive recipes!

Enjoy these tasty recipes! Happy Holidays!