For the majority of women, the symptoms are a minor inconvenience you can recognise, anticipate and deal with yourself. However if need be you can talk to your GP or Family Planning Clinic and Well-Woman Clinic are other sources of help.
For a minority of women, PMS is serious enough to affect work, daily life and relationships. If this sounds like you, you should see your GP to discuss your problems, possibly with a view to some treatment.
Treatment will depend upon the nature of the symptoms and their severity. For many women, simple changes to diet and lifestyle. A suitable diet sheet is available via the National Association for Premenstrual Syndrome (NAPS) at www.pms.org.uk.
Lifestyle changes for PMS Relief
Complementary medicines for PMS
There are many non-prescribed complementary treatments and supplements for PMS, and many women find them helpful in easing their symptoms. However, there is little research to back up their effectiveness. Most of the existing studies have shown mixed results. Examples of complementary therapies that may reduce some symptoms of PMT are magnesium, vitamin B6 and vitamin E.
Other disciplines might be helpful include aromatherapy. This may help you feel relaxed and help your general sense of well-being and therefore help you to manage the changes in your lifestyle. Always see your GP before taking any complementary medicine or supplement. If you decide to take a complementary treatment, take one at a time so you know if it works for you.
If you have psychological symptoms, such as feeling depressed or emotional, it may help to talk to a health professional. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is the term for a number of therapies that are designed to help solve problems such as anxiety and depression. A cognitive behavioural therapist can help you learn new ways of managing some of your symptoms.
Medical treatment for PMS
If your PMS is severe or you have premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), you may wish to try a medical treatment. However, there is no single treatment that works for everyone. Your choice of treatment will be based on your symptoms and how severe they are, and the possible side effects of the medication.
Medical treatments include: