09 July 2010

PMS is a real and severe health issue for many women

Women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS), from mild to very severe (and severe PMS is described as having premenstrual dysphoric disorder or PMDD) have a number of symptoms which compromise and adversely affect their quality of life and the level this is affected depends on the level of symptoms experiences - the worse the symptoms, the more adversely the quality of life is affected.

Scientists have been looking at women with PMS and have come to the conclusion that women who experience PMS symptoms experience lowered quality of life as they cannot function properly (whether it is in their relationships, work, social life) and this causes increased medical costs through more visits to doctors and subsequent lab test. It also causes indirect costs to employers through lowered productivity when a woman experiences severe PMS symptoms and cannot function or think as effectively as she normally does when not in PMS.

Women with severe PMS symptoms, especially the mental symptoms of anxiety, depression, anger can be so impaired in their ability to function normally (when not in the time of PMS), that it can cause an impairment in interpersonal or workplace functioning.

Interpersonal conflicts are common for women with PMS and that can cause a great deal of unnecessary stress in a workplace or for a woman's interpersonal relationships, which if not treated effectively and continues to escalate unabated, can mean those relationships cease to exist and employment may go on to be terminated. This of course, compounds the issue and it becomes a vicious circle.

Women with PMS must seek effective treatment for the symptoms of PMS in order to maintain a better quality of life and in order not to suffer the symptoms of this, often, debilitating condition.

Your doctor can use a Premenstrual Symptoms Screening Tool (PSST) to help you determine how PMS symptoms are affecting your life.

There are adequate (and natural) ways to control PMS (and even the condition known as PMDD).

  1.  Choi D, Lee DY, Lehert P, Lee IS, Kim SH, Dennerstein L. The impact of premenstrual symptoms on activities of daily life in Korean women. J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol. 2010 Mar;31(1):10-5
  2.  Freeman EWSondheimer SJ. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder: Recognition and Treatment. Prim Care Companion J Clin Psychiatry. 2003; 5(1): 30–39. Accessed 8 July 2010
  3. Mishell DR Jr. Premenstrual disorders: epidemiology and disease burden. Am J Manag Care. 2005 Dec;11(16 Suppl):S473-9. Accessed 8 July 2010
  4. Pearlstein T, Steiner M. Premenstrual dysphoric disorder: burden of illness and treatment update. J Psychiatry Neurosci. 2008 Jul;33(4):291-301. Accessed 8 July 2010

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