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PMS (premenstrual syndrome)

Premenstrual syndrome is the name for the symptoms women can experience in the weeks before their period.

Symptoms of premenstrual syndrome include mood swings, tiredness, tummy pain, headaches and spotty skin.

Getting plenty of sleep and taking painkillers can help with premenstrual syndrome. Other treatments like hormone medicine may be used if it's severe.

Premenstrual syndrome is thought to be linked to changes in hormone levels during the menstrual cycle.

Read more on the NHS website.

Symptoms of premenstrual syndrome include mood swings, tiredness, tummy pain, headaches and spotty skin.

Symptoms of PMS

Each woman's symptoms are different and can vary from month to month.

The most common symptoms of PMS include:

Read more on the NHS website.

Getting plenty of sleep and taking painkillers can help with premenstrual syndrome. Other treatments like hormone medicine may be used if it's severe.

Self-care


Do

  • exercise regularly

  • eat a healthy, balanced diet – you may find that eating frequent smaller meals (every 2-3 hours) suits you better than eating 3 larger meals a day

  • get plenty of sleep – 7 to 8 hours is recommended

  • try reducing your stress by doing yoga or meditation

  • take painkillers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol to ease the pain

  • keep a diary of your symptoms for at least 2 to 3 menstrual cycles – you can take this to a GP appointment


Don't

  • do not smoke

  • do not drink too much alcohol

Medical treatments

As well as changes to your lifestyle, a GP can recommend treatments including:

If you still get symptoms after trying these treatments, you may be referred to a specialist.

This could be a gynaecologist, psychiatrist or counsellor.

Complimentary therapies and dietary supplements

Complimentary therapies and dietary supplements may help with PMS, but the evidence of their effectiveness is limited.

They can include:

  • acupuncture
  • reflexology
  • supplements such as vitamin B6, calcium and vitamin D and magnesium (check with a GP or pharmacist if you are also taking medicines before starting to take regular supplements)

Read more on the NHS website.

Premenstrual syndrome is thought to be linked to changes in hormone levels during the menstrual cycle.

Read more on the NHS website.