After a female’s ovulation and up until the beginning of her menstrual flow, is when pms symptoms typically occur. This combination of physical, emotional, psychological and mood disturbances, are commonly known as premenstrual syndrome. Some of the common symptoms of pms that are related to mood swings are irritability, crying, oversensitivity, depression, alternating with anger and sadness. Bloating, fatigue, acne, breast tenderness, appetite changes which include food cravings. Weight gain and sleep disturbances, like sleeping too much or too little (insomnia) are also included among these symptoms. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is a severe form of PMS and occurs in low number of women, and may lead to a significant loss of function because the symptoms are so severe.
Pms symptoms are experienced by at least 80% of women and PMDD by between 2% to 6% with more severe symptoms of pms. These may be especially prominent as anger, irritability, anxiety and tension. Premenstrual syndrome was officially recognized by the medical community in 1931 although it was already noted in the times of the ancient Greeks. Most evidence suggests that PMS results from the changes or interactions between the levels of brain chemicals and sex hormones, which are known as neurotransmitters. Studies have shown that this condition is not associated with specific personality types or psychological stress.
Premenstrual syndrome is a set of very specific physical and psychological features than occurs in the last half of a woman’s menstrual cycle. It is necessary that pms symptoms be clearly distinguished from other disorders as it can be mimicked. A menstrual diary has been found to be the most helpful diagnostic tool for symptoms of pms. A healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise, emotional support of family and friends and medications, are some optional treatments for this condition. Diuretics, painkillers, antidepressants, oral contraceptives and drugs that suppress ovarian function are some possible medications for PMS.
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