• Mouli Mehra

Is PMS just about emotions?

Premenstrual syndrome is typically a mix of symptoms, that occurs between ovulation and a period. It is extremely common, about 90% of menstruating women go through it. What causes PMS is not clear but it most likely involves the change of hormones before a menstrual cycle. Its self-diagnosable symptoms are fatigue, tender breasts, irritability, mood swings and depression. I go through weight gain, heavy bloating and severe pain in my lower back. All these symptoms affect my behaviour and my mood so much so that I end up experiencing Diarrhoea and migraines as well.

PMS’ evil step sister PMDD, premenstrual dysphoric disorder involves heightened symptoms. While about 75 per cent of women experience PMS at some point in their lives, PMDD affects only 3 to 8 per cent of women. Many people have not even heard of this disorder, and those who have heard of it have trouble understanding the severity of it, likening it to run-of-the-mill PMS. PMS usually starts around day 14 and ends 7 days after the start of a period. Mainly symptoms are moderate but sometimes the severity of symptoms differs depending on the month and the individual.

Associated conditions include:

• Dysmenorrhea

• Major depressive disorder

• Seasonal affective disorder

• Generalized anxiety disorder

The symptoms of PMS include:

• Abdominal pain

• Abdominal bloating

• Tender breasts

• Acne

• Food cravings, especially for sweets

• Constipation

• Diarrhoea

• Headaches

• Sensitivity to light or sound

• Fatigue

• Irritability

• Changes in sleep patterns

• Anxiety

• Depression

• Sadness

• Emotional outbursts

It is common for most women to go through PMS. I will share an anecdote here; I go through severe pain and anxiety before my periods which is why I feel extremely emotional and take rest sometimes. I have heard people say that “oh you’re just PMSing, this is not serious!" This blog is to put light on the fact that premenstrual syndrome is a medical disorder. This is a hormonal issue that most women go through every month. It is important to be considerate to the women around and to not leave any "sexist" remarks.


PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) Medically reviewed by Chris Kapp, M.D. — Written by Valencia Higuera — Updated on May 11, 2019. Healthline. Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) •Medical Author: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD •Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR, Medically Reviewed on 1/15/2020. PMS vs. PMDD: Is it PMS or something more serious? Jun 23, 2020, By Ashley Laderer.

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