This is how premenstrual syndrome is treated
A large number of women suffer from premenstrual syndrome (PMS), which can be associated with such severe symptoms that it is no longer possible to think about coping with everyday tasks.
However, there are a number of simple measures and treatment options that can effectively counteract the symptoms.
Find out all about the topic here: Premenstrual syndrome.
These treatment options exist
- Lifestyle changes: regular sport and exercise, avoidance of nicotine, alcohol and coffee; healthy low-salt diet
- Meditation and relaxation techniques, acupuncture
- Taking certain medications: Hormonal contraceptives, pain relievers, antidepressants, diuretics (if water retention occurs)
Read more on the topic: Premenstrual syndrome despite taking the pill
These drugs can help
There are a number of drugs that are used for premenstrual syndrome. Most of them are so-called off label use-Preparations. This means that the drug has no special approval for the treatment of premenstrual symptoms.
The drugs that are used to treat PMS include hormonal contraceptives or birth control pills and pain relievers such as ibuprofen. If the premenstrual syndrome is accompanied by strong mood drops or depressive symptoms, antidepressants can also be considered as medication.
Diuretics are occasionally used in women with water retention. However, these should only be used in consultation with the doctor, as they remove water from the body and this can lead to unwanted side effects.
The use of birth control pills can influence the hormonal cycle. In some studies it has been shown that women affected by the use of the birth control pill had less severe PMS symptoms.
Furthermore, the pill had a positive effect on the level of activity. In addition to the positive effect in a large number of women, there were also study participants who complained about side effects of the pill (such as nausea or malaise).
For women who do not want to have children and who also want contraception protection, an attempt can be made with the birth control pill for the treatment of premenstrual syndrome. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the symptoms will subside during treatment with the pill.
Furthermore, before starting treatment, you should check whether there are any contraindications to taking pills, e.g. heavy smokers, blood clots or very overweight women.
In the context of premenstrual syndrome, severe mood drops or depressive moods can also appear. The administration of an antidepressant can be considered, especially in the case of prolonged depression.
Many of the drugs from the field of antidepressants have an effect on the serotonin level, this hormone plays a major role in our mood. An increase in serotonin can brighten or improve mood.
Ingestion can be associated with side effects, so antidepressants should only be used in consultation with a doctor. This is usually necessary anyway, since antidepressants are prescription drugs.
Read more about this under: Premenstrual Syndrome and Depression.
There are a number of pain relievers mainly used to relieve abdominal pain and headache associated with premenstrual syndrome. It is particularly common to take ibuprofen and aspirin (ASS). The pain medication can generally be used to treat headache, back pain and abdominal pain as part of PMS.
Many women benefit from taking it with severe pain. For a longer period of time, when giving painkillers, you should consider using a stomach protection medicine, because painkillers can cause discomfort in the gastrointestinal tract.
Diuretics are drugs that are used to help drain water from the body. They are occasionally prescribed for water retention associated with PM syndrome. The intake should always be done in consultation with the doctor, as excessive water loss can lead to undesirable side effects.
Due to their specific profile of action and the side effects in the treatment of PM syndrome, diuretics generally belong to the subordinate (or rarely used) therapeutic measures.
Read more about this under: Diuretics
These home remedies can help
A healthy diet can help relieve the body that is currently dealing with premenstrual complaints. A balanced, low-salt diet is recommended for those affected. It is also advised to refrain from coffee and alcohol.
Natural helpers against premenstrual symptoms include ginger and apple cider vinegar. In the best case, the apple cider vinegar is diluted with water, as its taste takes getting used to. The ginger can be poured with hot water and drunk as a tea, or used as an ingredient in food.
In addition, monk's pepper and evening primrose oil are said to have a soothing effect on PMS symptoms. Aroma compresses can be used to calm the cramped stomach. This is a damp cloth that is briefly heated in the microwave and then drizzled with lemon balm or lavender oil and placed on the aching stomach. The heat in particular can help relieve cramps.
The aromatic smell should promote relaxation. A hot water bottle or a cherry stone pillow can also have a calming effect on the pain in the abdomen due to their warmth.
Exercise or sporting activity can also have a relieving effect on the PMS symptoms. Many women who exercise regularly report a decrease in PMS symptoms.
You may also be interested in the following article on period pain relief: Period pain - what to do?
Monk's pepper is one of the medicinal plants that are said to have a soothing effect on PMS symptoms. For many women, taking it has a positive effect on PMS symptoms, which is why it is one of the most popular means for treating PMS symptoms.
Monk's pepper is also one of the few plants whose effect on the hormonal balance has been scientifically proven. However, there is no 100% guarantee that the agonizing PMS symptoms will disappear even when taking monk's pepper.
Evening primrose oil
Evening primrose oil is said to have beneficial effects on PMS symptoms. It is a herbal preparation that can be purchased in pharmacies or health food stores. Evening primrose oil is also said to have an influence on the hormonal balance, but the study situation on this is not clear.
St. John's wort has a positive influence on mood. As has also been shown in studies, it works like a light antidepressant. With a PMS syndrome, St. John's wort can be used to treat moods, low moods or feelings of depression.
As with other antidepressant drugs, it is essential to watch out for interactions with other drugs when taking Johanniskaut. St. John's wort can significantly influence the effect of other preparations and at the same time be impaired in its own profile by other agents.
In order to prevent interactions, it is worth reading the package insert carefully before taking the preparation or consulting your doctor.
For more information, read our article on the Effect of St. John's Wort.
Ginkgo can have a soothing effect on PMS symptoms. In particular, headaches, mood swings and tiredness should be reduced by taking ginkgo. Ginkgo is a medicinal plant that originally comes from China. The ginkgo capsules or tablets are now available from many different manufacturers. They can usually be bought in pharmacies or health food stores.
Read more of the effects of this medicinal plant under: Ginkgo
There are several homeopathic remedies that promise to relieve certain PMS symptoms. The dog milk globules are recommended by homeopaths for breast tenderness, cyclamen for headaches and to lighten the mood, globules made from black cohosh are particularly good remedies.
The globules are taken several times a day. As with many other homeopathic preparations, however, there is no scientific proof of the effectiveness of the globules mentioned above.
The Schüssler salts that can be used for PMS symptoms include magnesium phosphoricum. It should help against the cramping pain. Ferrum phosphoricum, Calcium phosphoricum and Kalium phosphoricum are also popular. It is best to take them preventively.
Calcium phosphoricum is said to have a strengthening effect on the nerves. Ferrum phosphoricum and potassium phosphoricum, in turn, are said to have a positive effect on the iron balance and blood formation.
Read more about this under: Schüssler salts
What to Avoid
Women with premenstrual syndrome are advised to stop smoking. Coffee and alcohol should also be left out in the best case. Furthermore, a low-salt diet can be observed - accordingly, salty dishes should be avoided at best.
The change in diet is only a matter of recommendations, which result primarily from experience reports from those affected. The effectiveness of these measures has not yet been proven by scientific studies.
Acupuncture promises a good effect on premenstrual symptoms. In addition to pain relief, acupuncture should also activate the body's self-healing power. There are no studies on acupuncture in relation to the PMS symptoms that prove their effectiveness.
However, some women report a positive effect with regard to their PMS symptoms and see a clear difference or an improvement in their PMS symptoms as a result of acupuncture treatment.
Read more about this topic and its areas of application under: Acupuncture