Many women believe that PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) is something that you have to live with month after month. At BodaHealth, we don’t believe that’s true.
PMS, or premenstrual syndrome affects an estimated 75 percent of all menstruating women, with a variety of symptoms that occur during one week to ten days before the onset of your period. PMS is considered to be a syndrome because it involves a group of symptoms—up to 150—that vary from woman to woman.
PMS is broadly categorized by groups of symptoms, however, it is entirely possible to experience symptoms from more than one category. These are:
PMS A, which is associated with anxiety, irritability, and moodiness.
PMS C, for food cravings. In addition to food cravings, your blood sugar levels may be off, and you may have heart palpitations, fatigue, or feel light headed.
PMS D, which stands for depression. Women with this type describe their symptoms as feeling sad and cry easily.
PMS H, for hydration. This type is about over-hydration of your body in the form of water retention and puffiness.
PMS P, is associated with pain and cramping prior to the beginning of your period.
PMDD, or premenstrual dysmorphic disorder. This type is described by extreme mood changes that are severe enough that they upset your life and work. It’s associated with feelings of sadness, anxiety, mood changes, and anger.
Your menstrual cycle involves an incredible choreography of hormones. Estrogen and progesterone are released from your ovaries throughout your cycle to thicken your uterine lining and prepare it to receive a fertilized egg. Experts believe that PMS is the result of an imbalance of hormones, in which estrogen levels are too high in relation to progesterone.
When it comes to the underlying reasons for this imbalance, there is some good news in that some of the causes are things that you may be able to control. Estrogen dominance can be triggered by chronic stress, dietary factors, exposure to chemicals that are hormone disruptors, and poor digestion (your liver and other digestive organs help break down and eliminate your body’s extra estrogen). Other causes of PMS that may be more complex to manage include gynecological issues, such as PCOS, endometriosis, and perimenopause.
At BodaHealth, an important part of your PMS treatment strategy is understanding the type of PMS that you’re experiencing, and your specific symptoms. For example, if you were primarily struggling with water retention, your treatment plan would be very different than if your symptoms were anxiety-related. However, we also realize that you may experience symptoms of more than one type.
For the best results, our treatments for PMS involve a number of approaches. Our goal is to focus on the underlying causes of your PMS as well as treating your symptoms. We do that by:
- Working to eliminate stress, calm your anxiety, and smooth out mood swings through the use of acupuncture. Research documents that acupuncture causes the release of neurotransmitters in your brain that relieve stress and elevate your mood.
- Balancing your hormones. This may be accomplished through the use of acupuncture, naturopathic medicine, or both. When appropriate, our naturopathic doctors can order tests to determine your hormonal status, and prescribe hormone supplementation if necessary.
- Assessing your diet. BodaHealth’s naturopathic physicians and acupuncture practitioners are well-schooled in diet and nutrition. Our goal is to help you eliminate foods that promote hormone imbalances, such as those high in sugar, toxins in the form of pesticides, and foods with additives that may disrupt the natural balance of your hormones.
- Recommending supplementation when necessary. Our practitioners may prescribe vitamins, minerals, individual herbs, or a Traditional Chinese herbal formula.
At BodaHealth, we take your PMS seriously, and are committed to finding natural solutions that you can live with. PMS doesn’t have to be something that you suffer through each month. If you’re struggling with PMS, contact us today to learn how we can help you.