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I experience bursts of almost uncontrollable anger that coincide
with the onset of my period. I notice that when I have a surge
of anger or get too upset about something that would normally not
bother me it turns out my period has started. I used to get mad
when my husband would say ''oh, is that time of the month.'' But,
frankly, I have to admit that for me there is a connection. I
recall hearing that people have had success taking evening
primrose for this. Has anyone taken evening primrose? Was it
helpful? Were there side effects? Any other suggestions?
It's that time of the month!
The same thing was happening to me. My doctor suggested vitamin
B-12 Bilingual. Make sure it's bilingual, not pill form. You put it under your
tongue and hold it for 30 seconds before swallowing. It takes about 1 month but
it helped. calmer mom
You sound just like me. I definitely would get angry around my period. While I
think the hormones made things worse, I will say going to therapy curbed it a
lot. I had anger issues. Now, I have more awareness and have worked through a lot
of issues. I still get PMS and get a little agitated but not nearly as bad as
before therapy. did it without drugs or herbs
A few suggestions:
Bach Flower Remedies: Available at Whole Foods.
Network Chiropractic: A gentle, holistic form of bodywork.
Covered by some health insurance. Unwind the tension in your body and everything
will be less stressful.
Roll up the windows of your car and yell- get it out. Or yell into a pillow and
hit your mattress. (Careful not to hurt your
In my experience, Anger is about a false sense of powerlessness. What do you want
to say, do, or be to feel powerful?
I have several friends with a similar issue. One has had great success with
accupuncture, the other with herbs and homopathic treatments. I would also
suggest watching your diet when you're your PMSing, cutting back on sugar,
caffine, etc anon
I'm 35 with two kids (youngest is 2.5 and we're done nursing)
and I've found myself suffering from the worst PMS symptoms
ever in my whole life. It feels like I only get one week a
month where I'm not either bleeding, bloated, breaking out or
weeping into my coffee (which I don't even really like, but
seems to be the only way to get energy some days.)
The mood swings are the worst part in many ways - I know my
life is FINE, sure there are struggles, work/life balance,
yadayadayada but some days of the month I wake up just feeling
hopeless. Other days my temper is hair-trigger. I'm 14 days
past my period now and my pants are tight, my boobs are swollen
and all I want to do is climb back into bed and pretend the
world doesn't exist.
I never had PMS problems at all in high school or college.
Things got worse after I turned 30, but in the last 6 months
it's really escalated and I don't know what to do. Is there
anything I can take? I have an IUD for birth control which
works great, and I didn't react well to the pill last time I
tried it (about 8 years ago). Any suggestions would be greatly
appreciated - I just want my life back.
monthly moody mama
I'm 37 and could have written your post few months ago.
you may want to read: ''what your doctor may NOT tell you about
prenenopase'' by John R. Lee, M.D. I found this book to be very
I'm so sorry to hear that this is happening to you. I'm thirty six and had
thing happen after I weaned my first child when I was 30. I also had
depression which got better but became premenstrual dysphoric disorder
scary but really can just mean premenstrual depression) I felt much as you
for about half the month. I have done several things and am now doing
great. 1) I
got a new amazin OB, Dr. Angelyn Thomas, who specializes in hormones--
out many options for me. 2) You can take many SSRI's (depression meds) for
the month. -- many folks w/ PMDD do this. 3) I've also found natural
cream to be helpful. I found out about this in the book''What your doctor
tell you about premenapause'' -- you can find it on amazon. I consider my
swings to be just part of the changes in hormone levels that happen in
ending in menapause. I'm still very fertile, and ovulate every month. I
just got stuck
w/ the emotional issues :-) Hope this helps
I suffered terribly from PMS after my kids were born. I finally
started to take Prozac, and it helped so much. You can take it
just while you are premenstrual, or for the whole month. It's
really worth trying-before that I tried acupuncture, therapy,
etc. but nothing really touched it till I took the
Run to the accupuncturist! I had great results with the herbs especially.
tons of recommendations on the BPN web site
less cranky mommy
It sounds like you're right on target with early symptoms of
peri-menopause. Most people don't realize it does start around
35. Nutrition, exercise and psychotherapy can work wonders.
Avoid coffee, sugar, complex carbohydrates, and alcohol.
Exercise regularly and get LOTS of calcium - drinking milk,
eating yogurt, dark leafy greens, tums. If need be,
antidepressants, like prosac, are sometimes prescribed to help
with the mood swings. And psychotherapy to deal with the stress
of everyday life, support for making these necessary changes,
and what all these changes mean to you. Of course, only you can
decide what's approach works best for you and your life syle
Poor you. It's the worst, isn't it? Fingers crossed, I think I
might have found something that works for PMS. I've used it for
two months now and have noticed decreased bloatiness, breast
tenderness and most importantly, less mooodiness, grumpiness,
depression, etc. It's called Estroven and is basically a blend
of herbs and B vitamins. I got it at Berkeley Natural Foods and
also on-line at drugstore.com. Worth a try, anyway!
I wonder if this could have anything to do with your IUD. I was
experiencing a milder version of what you're describing after I
had mine, though there is absolutely no evidence it has anything
to do with the IUD. I'm also really sensitive to caffeine so for
me that could be a reason too, but of course only if you too
respond badly to it.
I really don't like medication, so I turned to more natural
treatments, and I feel much better now. Of course I'll never know
if it's the herbs I'm eating, my new diet, or if it's just that
time went by. At this point I don't care. I couldn't function or
feel okay about how I was treating my husband, my two babies and
myself before, and now I'm fine, so who cares why.
Don't hesitate to contact me if you wish to chat.
For this newfound PMS, might I suggest the herbal supplement
black cohosh? You may have to experiment with dosage to see if
it works. Elephant Pharmacy in Berkeley was very helpful to me
on this issue. I hope it helps you as it has me
I work with a wonderful accupuncturist, Maureen Raytis. She
helps me with a variety of issues, but just recently, she worked
with my teenage daughter who has had horrible menstrual
irregularity with periods happening once every 2-3 weeks
essentially since she first got her period at age 10. She had
weekly treatments with Maureen for three months. She has been
on a 26-32 day cycle since starting the accupuncture. Not only
has that regulated, but her mood has been considerably less like
a wild rollercoaster ride. This has been a remarkable success
and much better than the putting her on birth control pills
forever as the gyn had suggested.
Maureen is gentle and sensitive and a wonderful person to work
with. Try it. She is opposite the Grand Lake Theater and her
phone number is (510) 501-6960
Have you tried Evening Primrose Oil? Your body might be trying
to let you know it needs a certain type of nourishment. I read
somewhere that good quality and unrefined oils help to
normalize hormonal production (for the GLAs and natural
occuring Vitamin Es). Could this be what you need? Couldn't
to a speedy recovery
I don't have much advice but boy do I hear ya! I'm guessing it's just my
I've been very similair to what you are saying. I have been drinking this
yogi tea called
moon cycle. it seems to help. could be psycosamatic but hey if it
works;). I'll look
forward to any other advice that might pour in
I have had almost miraculous results with acupuncture and
herbs. I had to go off HRT suddenly which left me in hormone
hell. 24 hours on herbs with acupuncture treatment and I was
sleeping again at night and more even during the day. and my
hot flashes were knocked back by 2/3.Try Jacques Bernou, offices
in Berkeley and Lafayette, (925)962-9228, mention you were
referred by me!
You have described perfectly what many women go through at age 35. There
definite hormone shift that occurs around this time, the main symptom of
an increase in PMS. Basically what has occured is a shift in the
progesterone ratio, leading to estrogen dominance. This can be due to
progesterone being low or estrogen being high, but the result is the same.
There are lots of doctors and practitioners in this area who are quite
about this condition (I've lectured on this topic at Elephant a few times,
again in August) and there are many things that one can do to correct it
herbs, and nutritional supplements. You may want to check out the book
your Doctor May Not Tell you about Pre-Menopause'' (which is not the same
''peri-menopause''), which discusses progesterone deficiency. Or look at
or website of Christiane Northrup, MD, who has a lot of good information
topic. For more personalized recommendations, I would recommend
with a naturopathic doctor (www.calnd.org) or nutritionally oriented
You can feel better soon!
Tara Levy, ND
After the birth of my third child I found myself with terrible PMS and
heavy menstrual cycles. This is partly due to switching from the pill
to an IUD, but
my doctor gave me a prescription for Progesterone. It seems to have
You might discuss this with your doctor.
A friend also informed me of a website where you can get a free sample
natural cream that supposedly mimics progesterone.
I have been noticing myself increasingly irritable, inpatient, and stubborn starting
from a week before my period, then get worsened for the few days just before my
period. I think I am having PMS. I do not have much of physical symptom but
fatigue. It seems to me I am more affected emotionally and mentally.
For example, today (a few days before my period) I notice myself arguing with my
loving, yet naturally stubborn and active 5 years old son. I tried my best, but I could
not help but rose my voice all the time and confronting him more often. Instead of
dealing my son's tantrum with simple words and guidance, I found myself fighting
him back with anger. This makes me feel very sad because he is in general a great,
funny, and kind boy.
Besides what I can take such as natural progesterone cream, vitamins, and herbs, I
am interested in learning more about how other moms with PMS are dealing with
their emotional change such as depression, rigidness, short tempered and irritable
feeling while being a full-time mom of young kids. I saw previous archives but it
mainly talked only about what you can take. I am more interested in how to handle
or control my own emotion so that I will be able to have more fun time with my kids
during my PMS.
PMS mom with two young boys
I suffer from severe breast soreness/tenderness for about 10-14
days before my period (almost half of the time!). Aside from
diet and exercise advice (I am admittedly not as conscientious
as I could be but that's another story), I am looking for
recommendations on what to wear to bed--I have to sleep with a
bra on and the ones that are supportive enough are very
uncomfortable, while the lightweight, comfortable ones do not
give me adequate support (I am a D cup). I wear underwires
during the day and they are definitely not comfortable to sleep
in! Am I the only one who has this problem??? Has anyone found
something comfortable and also supportive to sleep in?
Have you tried increasing the amount of calcium in your diet? I
found that taking 1200mg of Tums (i.e., 2 Tums, 3x daily)
reduced my premenstrual symptoms DRAMATICALLY, and that included
Just a suggestion. Otherwise, you might try Bravado
maternity/nursing bras, which are very comfortable to wear at
I know you are not asking for this, but Chinese Medicine, especially
Acupuncture, has an excellent track record in alleviating and preventing
breast pain during PMS. I'd be happy to answer any questions you may
have about it if you are interested in following this route.
Rhoda Climenhaga, L.Ac.
you might try nursing/pregnancy bras. i remember thinking that
the bravado bra (online) was a lifesaver during late pregnancy &
early nursing--very supportive yet gentle, and easy to get into
w/o lots of twisting & pain!
Help!! I am hoping that I can get some recommendations for medications over
counter, Chinese herbs or anything that could help me. For the past 9 months
a week before my menstrual cycle I get really tired, sluggish, light headed
nauseated, my stress level goes up and my temper become uncontrollable. I feel
as if I'm expecting. I have spoken to my gynecologist about this and she
that I lower the estrogen on the mini pill so I did, this has helped with
cramps and the tender breasts but now I have these other issues. Please
my family divorces me.
Have you tried taking Tums (or a generic) as a calcium supplement? A study
came out (Thys-Jacobs S; Starkey P; Bernstein D; Tian J. Calcium carbonate
and the premenstrual syndrome: effects on premenstrual and menstrual
symptoms. Premenstrual Syndrome Study Group. American Journal of Obstetrics
and Gynecology, 1998 Aug, 179(2):444-52) that showed that (some) women who
supplemented 1200-1600 mg of calcium daily suffered fewer PMS symptoms. I
read that study in Nov. 1998 and haven't missed a day of work due to PMS
since. It's quite simple to supplement. You can drink 6 cups of nonfat
milk a day, or even easier, take 6 Tums a day (two 200mg Tums three times
daily, breakfast, lunch and dinner, preferably). It took two cycles for me
to feel relief: May you be counted among those calcium deficient women for
whom this simple treatment works!
I read an article in the Chron. this Sunday that said it's not the hormones
that cause PMS, but differences in brain responses. They suggested St.
John's Wart, exercise, and avoiding caffeine and alcohol. Good luck - I
suffer from it too and I find exercise definately helps the most. It also
helps to mark your calendar monthly, so then when you feel the anger or
depression you can see "Oh, ok, it's just PMS." Knowing this, it helps both
me and my husband cope with my horrible mood!
I also had really bad pms. My friend recommend that I
should try wild yam cream. It helps. I believe u can
get it at a health food store.
I swear by 250 mg of vitamin B6 and 800 IU of vitamin E per day starting 10
days (maybe less) before my
period's supposed to start. This is the most effective/least invasive
remedy I've found to emotional
effects and fatigue; it helps a little with cramps too. I haven't tried in
at least a decade, but I was
never able to take the Pill because of PMS. I try to start my regimen
whether I feel symptoms or not
and that seems to minimize the whole thing.
Try "Evening of Primrose Oil" - you can find it in capsule form in most
health food stores. One every day greatly relieves PMS problems.
You do not say how old you are, which is part of the picture here. For
example, after 35, women begin to have problems with estrogen dominance
because they no longer ovulate regularly. Taking the mini-pill could be
amplifying that effect. Have you considered using another birth control
method (barrier) that would not systemically affect your body and being as the
pill does? If you do drop the pill and still have the same issues, diet,
supplements, and herbs can help. But, from my perspective as a diet
counselor, looking at ALL of your health issues would make sense.
To the woman who posted about her PMS symptoms, I have been suffering some of
the same symptoms for almost two years and it's very frustrating. In fact, I
feel very nauseated this morning as I am writing this...I too feel like I
must be pregnant..my nausae feels like morning sickness. I will experience
these symptoms 10-14 days before menstration begins. I haven't gotten any
satisfactory explanation from the doctor I've seen. I don't want to go on
birth control pills at this point in my life (I am in my late thirties.) I
would really like to know what is going on in my body. I was wondering
whether I might be peri- or pre-menapausal - because apparently this can
start in your late 30's. (They did a show on Oprah with Cybil Shepard where
they outline the symptoms- hot flashes etc....I don't seem to have the
If anyone has any insight, I would appreciate hearing from them. Although
I'm not really into taking medicine (herbal or otherwise) with additonal
information I may be open to this idea if it would help. Thank you.
Another way to lower your estrogen ratio is through natural progerone
cream, such as ProGest. You can buy it at most health food stores, for
about $20 a tube. You use it during the second half of your cycle. I've
been taking it for several years and most all my PMS symptoms are gone.
And there are no side effects as with synthetic hormones! If you want to
read up on it, get John Lee's book, What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About
Menopause: The Breakthrough Book on Natural Progesterone (somewhat of a
misnomer, since it's really about the many benefits of natural progesterone
and covers a lot more than menopause). I have recommended this to other
women who have reported success and great relief in how it has helped them.
I would like to respond to the person suggesting Tums and low fat milk for
calcium. From all I have read and learned in my nutrition courses:
1) Tums will diminish stomach acid and IMPEDE the absorption of calcium. The
combination is not good.
2) To absorb calcium, as with all minerals, one needs some dietary fat. Low
fat milk won't do this. If one does milk, get unhomogenized for sure, but get
whole milk and drink LESS. The body recognizes the whole food best.
Finally, calcium causes contraction, magnesium causes relaxation and they
potentiate each other. Taking a combination is ideal (many leafy green
vegetables have both nicely "packaged" together as do some good supplements
like Nature's Life Liquid).
I really appreciated the person who referred to the specific article
in the newsletter about PMS. It helps me enormously when I see
an article citation... I know the source of the information and
it helps me decide whether the information is reliable or not, and not
I have had terrible emotioanl swings during PMS and very irregular periods
that made it worse. I beleive good diet and exercise helps. I am not into
taking pills, either, and I don't want to take hormones because the long
term effects may not be known yet.
realized that chocolate (Hersheys but I also decided to minimize the
hormones that I get through milk and meat. That is, I switched to organic
milk and meat. To my surprise, at late 30's I am getting my periods close
to regular! and my PMS is much better. good luck.
p.s. my PMS sometimes included migraine headaches. I used to take tylenol,
now I take Hershey's milk chocolate which has the same effect and prevents
or releives my headaches and unlike Tylenol does not damage my liver. I
know it is not a part of heathy diet, but it works...
I too have had very difficult cycles in the past six years
(I am 41). The cycles were getting shorter, from a 28-31
days to a 21-24 day cycle, with heavy bleeding/clotting, and
*extreme* breast tenderness beginning at mid cycle (day 13).
I felt like I was pregnant for the week or two leading up to
my period. For two weeks a month I couldn't stand to have
my breasts touched, wear a bra, etc. I told my ob/gyn who
put me on a low dose pill, but I had to go off due to
(possibly hormone-induced) migraines. I was in despair after
six years of this, but I am happy to report that my periods
are back to normal again! I saw an acupuncturist, Brian
Barlay, had four treatments at one-week intervals, and now
I've had six "normal" cycles. They are 26-28 days long, and
the mid-cycle breast tenderness is
*completely* gone. My breasts are slightly tender two days
before my period begins, my temper is fairly even, and
although I still have some menstrual cramps, the bleeding is
shorter and lighter. This qualifies as a minor miracle! I
recommend Brian Barlay. L.Ac, 540-0544
To the person who is concerned that Tums is not a wise choice for
Tums is calcium carbonate which is calcium and evidence suggests
that it is absorbed as well as traditional calcium supplements. So, the
matter of Tums impeding calcium absortion is in fact not accurate. As to
combining calcium with fat: I did suggest in my original message (as does
research) that taking Tums with food (but not necessarily fatty food) makes
for better absorption. Additionally, calcium doesn't cause "contraction"
nor does magnesium cause "relaxation" and, if this were true, they wouldn't
potentiate each other, they would be antagonists, right? Anyhow, for the
matter of PMS, the studies suggest a calcium deficiency in sufferers, not a
magnesium one. And finally, I recommended taking either 6 glasses of
nonfat milk or Tums, because nonfat milk has a higher calcium content than
I really felt it necessary to reply only because this is such a
potentially helpful, inexpensive and harmless treatment option.
This is the conclusion from one reputable source:
CONCLUSIONS: Calcium supplementation of 1200-1600 mg/day, unless
contraindicated, should be considered a sound treatment option in women who
experience premenstrual syndrome. The supplemental dose of calcium can be
adjusted downward in the few patients who routinely consume large
quantities of calcium in their diet. Ward MW; Holimon TD. Calcium
treatment for premenstrual syndrome. Annals of Pharmacotherapy, 1999 Dec,
Wilson SA.Calcium therapy for treating PMS.Journal of Family Practice, 1998
Supplements for PMS [news]. Harvard Womens Health Watch, 1999 Mar, 6(7):7.
Thys-Jacobs S; Alvir MJ. Calcium-regulating hormones across the menstrual
cycle: evidence of a secondary hyperparathyroidism in women with PMS.
Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 1995 Jul, 80(7):2227-32.
In response to one woman's suggestions for PMS: Suggesting that TUMS is a
good calcium supplement is a commonly held misperception for the simple
reason that calcium requires an acidic environment in the body in order to be
absorbed. Since TUMS reduce stomach acidity, they actually create a barrier
to calcium absorbtion! I have no idea why these two things are marketed in
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