Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): PMS Is Not Just "Bad Moods" That Are Easily Ignored


Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): PMS Is Not Just "Bad Moods" That Are Easily Ignored

Many menstruators fear the combination of symptoms known as Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS). They consist of a complicated combination of mental and emotional changes that cause exhaustion and distress just before the start of a menstrual cycle. Many women who have periods suffer from PMS, but there hasn't been much in the way of in-depth study or public awareness of the condition.

PMS is frequently written off as simple mood swings or food cravings, and this is done to gaslight those who experience it. PMS is much more than just pains, mood swings, and the blues. Before the period starts, this condition has effects that go far beyond "simply being irritable.

The history of PMS is also a story of how menstrual discomfort was devalued and turned into a gendered characteristic. In popular culture, PMS is viewed as a technique used to mock menstruators, particularly women, by equating them with weakness. Women's legitimate displeasure and rage are hidden by the constant association of their emotions with PMS and other monthly discomforts. Similar to the history of hysteria, sociologists have used PMS to ascribe menstruators to gendered characteristics.

Pre-Menstrual Syndrome: What Is It?

Pre-Menstrual Syndrome is a collection of alterations in physical, behavioural, and emotional characteristics that commonly take place just before the start of a period. Before every period, it frequently repeats itself and interferes with the person who is experiencing it in their day-to-day activities. Bloating, breast soreness, weight gain, cramps, migraines, acne, an increase in hunger, abrupt mood swings, and other symptoms are common PMS symptoms. Various menstruators experience these symptoms to different degrees.

According to a 2019 study reported in the National Medical Journal of India, the prevalence of PMS was 62.7% among 300 students enrolled in the scientific stream of a women's college in Puducherry. The most frequent symptoms were abdominal heaviness and discomfort, followed by back, joint, and muscular problems. Since PMS frequently interferes with wellbeing, productivity, and mental health, it is believed that those who experience it during the PMS phase have a lower quality of life.

PMS is not something that should be ignored or written off as a temporary period of slight discomfort. So that we do not let our gender prejudice hinder our thorough understanding of PMS, it must be understood scientifically as well as psychologically, and we must use the gender lens to properly examine its numerous intricacies of it.

To properly revive scientific discussion on the subject and advance toward developing potential treatments for the condition, it is necessary to dispel the many myths surrounding PMS.

Myth 1: PMS only causes moodiness.

Menstruating women are not affected by some unusual phenomenon that makes them moody, and it is certainly not a justification to minimise or gaslight them. A group of symptoms known as PMS include mood swings and depressed moods. However, as was already indicated, there is much more to it. PMS can cause symptoms that are both emotional and physical, thus it involves a variety of simultaneous events that go much beyond "simply being irritated."

Although the exact cause of PMS is unknown, emotional disturbances are assumed to be related to the peaks and valleys of estrogen-specific hormones throughout the menstrual cycle. These hormonal changes may be the cause of the psychological symptoms rather than the other way around. It is problematic to reduce PMS to just an emotional experience, especially in light of the fact that it is frequently used to minimise the suffering of menstruators, particularly women, and to stigmatise them as weak or unstable.

Myth 2: Everyone who menstruates has PMS

Although many people have some degree of PMS symptoms, not all women who menstruate will necessarily experience them. Premenstrual symptoms of mild to moderate intensity are common, but from a medical standpoint, they are not considered PMS if they don't significantly impair a person's quality of life.

With age, menstrual flow, and the presence of additional contributing variables including PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome), mental health issues, menopause, and the like, PMS and its effects on a person fluctuate. The experience of having a period is not uniform, and PMS is no different.

Myth 3: PMS is not troublesome.

This allegation is false because PMS is a recognised medical illness. In addition to common PMS symptoms including breast pain and bloating, Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is a severe version of PMS that causes intense mood swings, melancholy, hopelessness, and impatience or hostility.

PMDD is a serious, considerably more complex form of PMS that calls for care and attention from a doctor. It is a fallacy that has been spread to prevent conversations about menstruation distress and maintain the taboo surrounding such topics that PMS is merely something that happens before a person menstruates and that it does not require examination or care.

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a diagnosis made by a medical professional based on the frequency, nature, and severity of a patient's premenstrual symptoms. Monitoring your symptoms might help you identify PMS symptoms and decide whether you need to see a doctor. Knowing one's premenstrual symptom pattern can be helpful for letting one know where they are in the cycle, assisting them in making plans in advance to lessen uncomfortable symptoms, and assisting them in identifying triggers that worsen symptoms.

We should not ignore the serious nature of PMS and PMDD symptoms. It is even more crucial that society stop using them as a tactic to minimise any real problems that women who are menstruating may be experiencing.

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