What is PMS and What Are the Symptoms


PMS is commonly heard among women.  PMS stands for premenstrual syndrome and is also referred to as PMT or premenstrual tension.  Women, most of them in their child-bearing age, may feel physical, emotional and psychological symptoms during their menstruation cycle.  These symptoms are referred to as PMS.

Symptoms associated with PMS vary.  A woman may have symptoms which can be different from others.  Sometimes, women may experience different symptoms every month.

There are 90 percent of women claiming to experience PMS every month.  Most of these women may experience extreme discomfort which can be associated with menstruation.  However, there are some women who may show severe symptoms which can often lead to the incapability to move.



Some common physical symptoms of PMS are:

  • Abdominal bloating and cramps.
  • Tenderness or swelling of the breasts.
  • Insomnia or trouble sleeping.
  • Headaches.
  • Fatigue and tiredness.
  • Stress and anxiety.
  • Joint or muscle pain.
  • Mood swings.
  • If a woman has skin disorders, they tend to flare up.  Some women may experience acne flare-up.
  • If a woman has eye problems such as conjunctivitis, it may be likely to worsen.
  • Constipation or diarrhea.


PMS can also manifest itself or take its toll on a woman’s emotions and behavior.  Some behavioral symptoms may be:

  • Depressed mood which can often lead to crying off and on.
  • Irritability or anger.
  • Food cravings or appetite changes.
  • Social withdrawal.
  • Poor concentration or inability to focus well.


There are women who are capable of enduring the physical and emotional pain and stress of menopause.  Some women are unable to participate in any of their daily routines or activities because of the pain and stress.  But other women may immediately lose these symptoms once the menstruation has started.

As mentioned above, there are many women who suffer severely from PMS.  About 2 to 5 percent of women experience this situation.  This is referred to as PMDD or premenstrual dysphoric disorder. This is considered a psychiatric disorder since the symptoms of PMDD are severe depression, hopelessness, anger, anxiety, low self-esteem, and tension.

PMS and its symptoms are often associated with lifestyle, diet and family history.  If a woman is consuming a diet with low vitamins and minerals, especially magnesium, manganese and vitamin E, this can definitely have an impact on how receptive her body is to PMS.  Caffeine and tobacco use can also be a factor.

Aside from these, experts report that PMS can also be brought about by stress, which can also heighten the condition.  Increasing age is also attributed to PMS, since most of the women suffering with this would be in their late 20’s to 40’s.



There are some drugs that can be taken by somebody suffering from PMS.  But it is important to have a doctor prescribe these before taking any medication for premenstrual syndrome. Some medicines which can be used are:

Antidepressants – this is taken by women who are having sleeping problems, fatigue, and food cravings.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – ibuprofen is an example of this medicine which relieves cramping and breast soreness or tenderness.

Diuretics – taken to reduce weight gain by helping the body rid some of the excess water through the kidneys.

Oral contraceptives – these pills help in relieving PMS symptoms

Medroxyprogesterone acetate – an injection that can stop  ovulation but side effects may be increased appetite, weight gain, or headaches.  Much of the time this is used for PMDD patients.

If taking medicine and the natural products is more appealing for you, there are some basic remedies which can be done at home and also by changing some of your lifestyle habits.

During the menstruation period or PMS, it is better to avoid caffeine and alcohol totally. Also, eat smaller proportions to avoid bloating and gaining too much weight.  Also avoid high consumption of salt and salty foods, since this can cause fluid retention in your body making you feel more bloated.

Try to do some exercise, 30 minutes of walking may be sufficient.  You can do swimming, cycling, or aerobic workout.  This would increase your energy levels, making you less vulnerable to depression and fatigue.  Wearing a supportive bra will help lessen the tenderness and soreness of your breasts.

It would be a good habit to monitor your PMS every month after changing your lifestyle and habits.  This would give you more incentive to make healthier choices and changes to your body.


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