PMS occurs on or after ovulation and usually disappears when menstruation starts. It is a legitimate, chronic, medical condition in which some women experience unpleasant symptoms of varying severity, which include, but are not limited to:
- Physical symptoms: acne – abdominal pain – aching varicose veins – breast tenderness – fatigue – feeling bloated – clumsiness – cramps – carbohydrate cravings – headaches – insomnia
- Emotional symptoms: anxiety – irritability – fuzzy thinking – lethargy – low libido – moodiness – tension
Some women may find their condition worsens premenstrually if they have the following pre-existing conditions: allergies – asthma – diabetes – mood disorders – oedema.
When a woman charts her menstrual cycle, she can record her physical and emotional PMS symptoms against her natural fertility signs. In this way, she would be able to:
- establish her individual PMS pattern
- objectively judge the length of her pre-menstrual time
- document the quality and recurring symptoms of PMS
- accurately predict her next menstruation
In short, by charting her menstrual cycle and her PMS symptoms, a woman develops a self-awareness, which helps her to anticipate, plan and manage her PMS.
There is no easy remedy for PMS. What works for one may not necessarily work for another. Trial and error characterises the self-care process for many. By recognising her own unique PMS pattern, a woman helps herself by anticipating and managing her PMS symptoms with whatever she finds beneficial. A woman’s fertility charts help in her self-care process by:
- providing factual evidence for doctors and / or counsellors
- documenting her reaction to different health treatments
- priming her family and friends to anticipate her PMS and to support her
Doctors who are trained in Restorative Reproductive Medicine have treatments which can assist if the PMS symptoms are severe.