Period pain and premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects one in three menstruating women and occurs in the latter part of the monthly cycle. PMS often increases at times of hormonal turbulence such as puberty, after childbirth, a miscarriage or a termination, but many women suffer from symptoms throughout their lives.
What is period pain and PMS? Symptoms can be physical, psychological and behavioural:
Fluid Retention:weight gain, period cramps, bloating, breast tenderness, swollen fingers.
Anxiety: nervous tension, mood swings and irritability.
Food Cravings: leading to headaches, fatigue, dizziness.
Depression: forgetfulness, tearfulness, insomnia and confusion.
It is now known that these symptoms can be treated very successfully using a combination of dietary changes, exercise and lifestyle changes. You may also find that with these modifications that you notice a lessening of period pains.
Diet: consumption of refined carbohydrates (sweet food and white flour) should be restricted and the inclusion of high fibre foods (fruit and vegetables) should be eaten. Supplements which include the B vitamins and GLA rich oils are also known to be of benefit.
Exercise: aerobic exercise is beneficial as are some of the less strenuous stretching exercises practised in yoga or pilates classes. Indeed there are specific yoga positions which aid blood flow to the pelvic region and this can help to ease period pain.
Express Chemist stocks products that can lessen the symptoms of period pain and PMS below.