PMS Anxiety: Frequently Asked Questions

 

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Does your monthly period put you in a pretty nervous mood? Then you’re not the only one. You may have heard a few things told about bloating and cramping, but the true hallmark of premenstrual syndrome is anxiety.

Anxiety can be seen in various forms, although it typically includes nervousness, exaggerated worrying, and tension. Premenstrual syndrome is characterized by a combination of psychiatric and physical symptoms present during the luteal stage of a woman’s cycle. This stage starts just after ovulation and ends when your period begins – usually persisting for about two weeks.

During this time, a lot of women have minor to moderate mood swings. However, if you are experiencing severe mood swings, this could signify a more grave condition known as premenstrual dysphoric disorder or PMDD.

Continue reading and learn more about why anxiety occurs before your period and how you can deal with it.

Why It Happens

Since the 21st century, scientists have not found a clear answer to the whys and hows of premenstrual conditions and symptoms. But most of them agree that PMS symptoms, which include anxiety, emerge as a response to altering progesterone and estrogen levels. The volume of these reproductive hormones increase and decrease considerably in the luteal stage of menstruation. Essentially, the body gets ready for pregnancy by increasing the production of hormones following ovulation. However, if no implantation takes place, these hormone levels then fall, and your period commences.

This hormonal process affects the brain’s neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, linked to mood regulation. This could partly be why the emergence of psychological indications like depression, mood swings, and anxiety and occur during PMS. It is not clear why some women experience more severe PMS compared to others. Still, it could be that these women are more sensitive to hormonal instabilities, potentially because of their genes.

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Below are frequently asked questions about PMS anxiety and more. 

Can anxiety affect your period?  

For some females, stress and anxiety can contribute to causing irregular periods. When stress increases, there is a possibility that your menstrual period will cease temporarily, an ailment called secondary amenorrhea.

What helps anxiety during a period?

Trying relaxation strategies to decrease stress levels may help alleviate your premenstrual anxiety. Popular strategies include meditation, massage, sleep, and yoga, among others. 

Why do I feel anxious after my period?  

The hormonal rollercoaster that occurs after a menstrual period affects neurotransmitters in the brain, like dopamine and serotonin, which are linked to mood regulation. This may explain the psychological indications like depression, mood swings, and anxiety that occur during PMS. 

Can anxiety stop your period?  

If you’re anxious or stressed, your menstrual period can last longer or shorter, your period may stop, or it may hurt more. This is the reason why you should avoid stress by making sure that you spend time for relaxation. Swimming, yoga, and jogging are great ways to help you relax. 

How long can a period be delayed?  

A period is technically delayed if it has been over 30 days from the beginning of your last period. When six weeks have passed without bleeding, this is considered a late or missed period. 

What to do if periods are not coming?  

Here are some science-backed remedies that can help improve irregular periods:

  • Exercise regularly.
  • Practice yoga and meditation.
  • Maintain a healthy diet.
  • Drink vitamins regularly.
  • Add cinnamon to your water or healthy drink.
  • Eat pineapple.
  • Try apple cider vinegar.

What are the symptoms of not having a period?  

You may experience other indications or symptoms that accompany the missed or absent period, which depends on what caused the amenorrhea. Some indications include hair loss and milky nipple discharge, among others. 

Why is my period late but not pregnant?

Late or absent periods occur for a lot of reasons besides pregnancy. Common causes could include hormonal imbalance and other serious medical conditions. There are also two circumstances in a female’s life when it is completely normal for her periods to be erratic – when a period starts and when menopause begins. 

Is it normal to miss a period for a month?  

If you have not had your period for a month, try not to worry. It is not abnormal to miss a period sometimes. It may just be your body’s reaction to tension and stress or alterations in your exercise and eating routines.

How do you self-check your stomach for pregnancy?

Press your fingers on the side of your abdomen until you sense the top portion just under the skin. You’ll feel like it’s a hardball inside your stomach, particularly if you curve your fingers moderately on the abdomen. You should be in the supine position when you try to find the top of your uterus with your fingers. 

How late should my period be before I start to worry?

A period is technically considered delayed if it has been over 30 days since the beginning of your last one. After six weeks without any bleeding, you should consider your late period a missed one. Other things can also delay your period, from preexisting health illnesses and primary lifestyle modifications.

How soon do pregnancy symptoms start?

It typically takes two to three weeks following sex for a pregnancy to occur. Some individuals have observed pregnancy symptoms as prematurely as one week after pregnancy starts. This is when a fertilized egg connects to the uterine wall. Other women do not notice symptoms until several months going into their pregnancy.

What kind of breast pain indicates pregnancy?  

In the premature weeks of pregnancy, pain in the breast tends to be achy and dull. Your breasts may feel inflamed and heavy and can be very sensitive when touched. This makes foreplay and exercises very difficult.

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Conclusion

If you have PMS symptoms that do not improve despite the changes you have tried, such as improving your lifestyle or thinking that you have PMDD or PME, it is wise to follow up with your physician. If you’ve been keeping track of your period and your PMS symptoms, bring your notes along so you can discuss them as well.

If you are diagnosed with PMDD or PME, the initial treatment for these conditions is SSRIs, a type of antidepressant that increases serotonin levels in the brain, resulting in a decrease in anxiety or depression symptoms.

Minor anxiety that you experience a week or two before having your period is completely normal. However, if the symptoms you’re experiencing affect your daily life negatively, you should try to follow some tips and techniques that could help alleviate your symptoms. Begin by changing your lifestyle and practicing healthy habits. Ultimately, you will need to discuss everything with your doctor or gynecologist.