First, what is PMS??
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) (historically called PMT or Premenstrual Tension) is a collection of physical, psychological, and emotional symptoms related to a woman's menstrual cycle. While most women of child-bearing age (about 80 percent) have some premenstrual symptoms, women with PMS have symptoms of "sufficient severity to interfere with some aspects of life". Such symptoms are usually predictable and occur regularly during the two weeks prior to menses. The symptoms may vanish after the menstrual flow starts, but may continue even after the flow has begun.
So, what are the symptoms?
PMS is a collection of symptoms. More than 200 different symptoms have been identified, but the three most prominent symptoms are irritability, tension and dysphoria(unhappiness). The exact symptoms and their intensity vary from woman to woman. Most women with premenstrual syndrome experience only a few of the problems. Other common symptoms are:
- Abdominal bloating
- Constipation and possible hemorrhoids due to water retention
- Abdominal cramps
- Breast tenderness or swelling
- Itching of the breasts
- Appetite changes and food cravings
- High sexual arousal or desire
- Trouble falling asleep (insomnia)
- Stress and anxiety
- Joint or muscle pain
- Trouble concentrating
- Body temperature increase
- Worsening of existing skin disorders, and respiratory (eg, allergies, infection) or eye (eg, visual disturbances, conjunctivitis) problems
Who could have PMS? Can I be one of them?
You should be a woman and still having menstrual. The other factors are:
- High caffeine intake
- Stress may precipitate condition.
- Increasing age
- History of depression
- Tobacco use
- Family history
- Dietary Factors (Low levels of certain vitamins and minerals, particularly magnesium, manganese, and vitamin E)
Family history is often a good predictor of the probability of premenstrual syndrome; studies have found that the occurrence of PMS is twice as high among identical twins compared with fraternal twins.Although the presence of premenstrual syndrome is high among women with affective disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder, a causal relationship has not been established.
So, what's with drinking caffeine?
Studies have shown that caffeine poses genuine dangers for women. Caffeine apparently elevates estrogen levels in women, which in turn increases the risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer, as well as for fibroid tumors, endometriosis, heavy menstrual bleeding, benign breast cancer, and PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) among others.
Based on research, the more coffee a woman consumed, the higher the level of estrogen produced. Women who consumed four to five cups of coffee per day (500 milligrams of caffeine) produced nearly 70 percent more estrogen than women who consumed less than one cup of coffee a day (100 milligrams of caffeine).
Caffeine, which is found in black tea, cola drinks, cocoa, chocolate, and some over-the-counter drugs act as a diuretic that decreases discomfort and bloating. On the other hand, caffeine also causes a fall in blood sugar which increases symptoms of PMS. In fact, there can be a three-fold increase in PMS by drinking more than three to four cups of coffee a day.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, up to 40 percent of menstruating women complain of some form of PMS. Most of these women have symptoms that are fairly mild and do not need treatment.
PMS symptoms vary among women. But it commonly includes painful menstrual cramping, or dysmenorrhea, breast swelling or tenderness, food craving, appetite changes, binge eating, bloating, upset stomach, constipation or diarrhea, joint or muscle pains, mood swings, irritability, anxiety, depression, fatigue, trouble sleeping, trouble concentrating or remembering, headaches and migraines.
Thus, women who are experiencing PMS are cautioned to avoid or decrease their caffeine intake, rather gradually. Immediate caffeine withdrawal, alternatively, can cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, depression, and fatigue. Substitutes for coffee such as water-processed decaffeinated coffee, green tea, and herbal teas like peppermint, chamomile, and ginger should likewise be tried.
SO WOMEN WHO LOVE COFFEE BE WARNED!!!!!!
Girls take a good care of yourself. Manage it well.
You can manage or sometimes reduce the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome by making changes in the way you eat, exercise and approach daily life. Try these approaches:
Modify your diet
- Eat smaller, more frequent meals each day to reduce bloating and the sensation of fullness.
- Limit salt and salty foods to reduce bloating and fluid retention.
- Choose foods high in complex carbohydrates, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
- Choose foods rich in calcium. If you can't tolerate dairy products or aren't getting adequate calcium in your diet, you may need a daily calcium supplement.
- Take a daily multivitamin supplement.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol.
Incorporate exercise into your regular routine
Engage in at least 30 minutes of brisk walking, cycling, swimming or other aerobic activity most days of the week. Regular daily exercise can help improve your overall health and alleviate symptoms such as fatigue and a depressed mood.
- Get plenty of sleep.
- Practice progressive muscle relaxation or deep-breathing exercises to help reduce headaches, anxiety or trouble sleeping (insomnia).
- Try yoga or massage as ways to relax and relieve stress.
Record your symptoms for a few months
Keep a record to identify the triggers and timing of your symptoms. This will allow you to intervene with strategies that may help to lessen them.