PMS stands for Pre-Menstrual Syndrome. As the name itself suggests, it is a collection of symptoms some women experience a week or two before the onset of their periods.
How Many Women Have it?
There is no clear statistics which can bring to our notice the number of women who deal with PMS, but some sources suggest 50 to 75% of women experience PMS out of which 10-15% face chronic symptoms and seek medical treatment.
What are the Symptoms of PMS?
Different women experience different symptoms. Symptoms may be either physical, emotional or behavioural. The most common symptom associated with PMS which most women claim they experience is extreme mood swings. These symptoms go away once the periods start.
Do I Have PMS?
Many women cannot differentiate between general mood swings and PMS symptoms. If you experience anger or irritation around a week before your period is due, it is likely that you are experiencing PMS.
To be sure, you can download a period tracker app which lets you feed how you are feeling. Over a few months, you may analyze the app and conclude if such mood swings happen every month or it is just a random emotion suggesting that you do not suffer from PMS.
What Causes PMS?
This is a grey area where doctors are not really sure of the reason why few women experience PMS and others don’t. The only reasoning, they have come up with is the hormonal fluctuations women experience before and during their menstrual cycle every month which leads to such abrupt behavioural change.
When does PMS Occur?
We are not aware of the exact occurrence time of PMS, but it is a known fact that women experience such symptoms mostly 1 week before periods. This may vary from one individual to another, but PMS symptoms go away once the period starts. If such mood swings continue even after your period starts, do not confuse it with PMS. Discomfort and pain during the menstrual cycle can cause irritation which you may assume to be PMS. Certain pain-killers may help you in managing the pain but if the pain gets chronic, it is better to get a consult. Renowned Obstetrician Gynecologist Dr. Anat Zelmanovich suggests that the severity of the pain can help you judge when you need to visit an expert.
Is PMS a Real Thing?
This topic is still debatable as no solid study has been produced to prove the existence of PMS. Latest research point towards the influence of women’s magazine which bombards women and makes them believe all the drastic symptoms of PMS. It has been suggested that PMS symptoms occur due to the psychological impact of such influencing factors and that PMS only exist in the minds of women but has no real existence. But women do not agree with this theory. Several women have come forward claiming that they feel different physically and mentally in their premenstrual days.
Though scientifically the existence of PMS might not be proven but completely ruling it out might not be fair to millions of women who are dealing with it (or claim to be dealing with it) every month.