12 Common Premenstrual (PMS) Symptoms

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) is a condition that affects a woman’s physical well-being, mental health, and behavior and occurs just before a woman starts her period. Studies show that about three in four women experience PMS, albeit usually in its milder form.

So what composes PMS’ weave of symptoms? Let’s find out!

1. Abdominal Problems

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Abdominal pain and bloating are common symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. These could be caused by increased levels of a hormone called prostaglandin, which causes painful contractions in the uterus.

With PMS, pain can occur in other areas, too…

2. Sore Breasts

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Sore and swollen breasts are usually a sign of an incoming period. The swollenness results from a rise in estrogen production, and it usually occurs once or after the menstrual cycle begins.

Some things pop out in the wrong places, as the next PMS symptom shows…

3. Acne

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Estrogen and progesterone levels fall just as menstruation begins, and as a result, the sebaceous glands exude more sebum, leaving the face prone to clogged pores and pimple breakouts.

PMS can also impact your digestion…

4. Constipation

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Women usually experience constipation before and during their periods as a result of the changing levels of progesterone.

Other times, the opposite can happen…

5. Diarrhea

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Other bowel problems like diarrhea tend to occur before and during menstrual cycles. This is due to the uterus contracting and shedding its lining, which impacts the gastrointestinal tract.

PMS can cause serious pain…

6. Headaches

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Headaches that you experience before getting your periods are also a result of the changes in progesterone and estrogen levels in the body. These headaches can go from a dull throbbing sensation to a more severe, pulsing pain.

Seeing the light can be a little too much for some…

7. Increased Sensitivity

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Women suffering from PMS usually experience heightened sensitivity towards light, noise, and certain odors. Having PMS also means having a lowered pain threshold, making you feel a higher level of pain.

And, PMS can keep you up at night…

8. Insomnia

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Getting a good night’s rest is tricky with PMS. Sleep problems usually occur before and during periods, and this often leaves women drowsy and fatigued. But that’s not always the case, as some women with PMS tend to sleep more often than usual.

While the following PMS symptom can be less obvious, it can definitely take a huge toll on you…

9. Anxiety & Depression

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As we have already pointed out, PMS causes fluctuating hormones, and it tends to affect neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine. This change can cause or worsen mental health problems like anxiety and depression.

You also might feel like having more of your comfort foods during PMS…

10. Food Cravings

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Speaking of serotonin, PMS can cause an increased appetite for foods rich in fats, carbohydrates, and sugar.

In some cases, PMS can impact social life…

11. Social Withdrawal

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Withdrawal from social events and activities is a fairly common symptom of women who have PMS. They tend to lock themselves in isolation for hours or days, just before their menstrual cycles.

That said, PMS can also leave your mind in a haze…

12. Poor Concentration

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Women experiencing PMS tend to also suffer from occasional brain fog, which causes poor concentration, poor decision-making, and other lowered cognitive abilities, all of which can affect productivity.

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