When considering what can help PMS pain, one must think about several factors. Among the key things to consider is that many symptoms commonly associated with PMS are either triggered or exacerbated by fluctuations in the body’s hormonal balance that occur during the week to ten days before the onset of a woman’s period. Therefore, the best way for her to treat her PMS symptoms is to keep her body’s hormone levels properly balanced.
Stress Hormones are Often the Culprit
Controlling PMS is not always about regulating the excess hormones released as part of the menstrual process. If a woman is stressed by external sources, such as job, relationship, or financial worries, it may trigger the release of additional hormones to attempt to deal with the stress. These additional hormones can push a woman’s hormones into greater imbalance and can increase her PMS issues.
One of the most common symptoms triggered by stress hormone imbalances is fluid retention, which is the major cause of bloating, especially around a woman’s midsection and ankles. Additionally, those same stress hormones can cause cravings for unhealthy, salt-laden snacks, which will increase fluid retention and blood pressure, and can even cause weight gain beyond the fluid retention.
Fluid Retention and Water Weight Issues
At best, the issues caused by PMS-related water weight and/or fluid retention are uncomfortable and awkward. At their worst, however, they place additional stress on a woman’s internal organs and skin, creating sufficient bloating to make her normal clothing impossible to fit into. This additional stress from water weight gain and/or fluid retention is, in great part, responsible for creating (or increasing) the cramping associated with PMS. Limiting life stressors is the first step a woman should take in dealing with PMS issues. Granted, this is more easily said than done, but there are things a woman can do to reduce external stressors.
The First Lines of Defense: Diet and Exercise
Diet and exercise are the two easiest areas a woman can adjust in order to control her PMS symptoms. Eating adequate amounts of fresh vegetables and fruit (the recommended amount is five to nine servings a day) and getting her daily requirement of vitamins and minerals will help her prevent the development of bloating, cramps, and mood swings, and – if they do occur – will greatly reduce their severity. B vitamins, magnesium, and calcium are all recognized as being particularly effective in reducing these symptoms.
Another key element in supporting the body’s ability to deal with stress is exercise. It is not necessary to join a gym in order to reap exercise’s benefits. Even simple activities – taking one’s dog to the park to play, going for a walk, taking up a sport, or going dancing – incorporates movement into a woman’s day, and helps to fight stress and strengthen both muscles and the immune system. Moderate exercise also assists people in getting better sleep, thereby giving the body a chance to recover from daily stresses and activities.
Supplements Provide Additional Help
While diet, stress reduction, and exercise are all useful in reducing or eliminating PMS symptoms, occasionally additional help is needed. In those instances, most women can find relief by using natural herbal supplements, because herbs like black cohosh, damiana, red raspberry, white willow bark, and wild yam have fewer harsh effects on a woman’s body than conventional medications. These days, such supplements, containing the above herbs as well as vitamins and minerals that are specifically designed to deal with PMS symptoms, are easily available and, often, women find them to be more effective in treating their pain and their PMS symptoms, while carrying fewer risks than conventional medications do.
Author: Regina SpencerThis author has published 5 articles so far.