PMS - Pre-Menstrual Syndrome

Dr. Bal Pawa, BPharm, MD, discusses pre-menstrual syndrome.

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Dr. Bal Pawa, BPharm, MD, discusses pre-menstrual syndrome.
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Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Bal Pawa, BPharm, MD

Duration: 1 minute, 29 seconds

Premenstrual syndrome or PMS is actually a cluster of symptoms that occur two to ten days before menstruation.

These symptoms vary, but mostly mood swings, depression, breast tenderness, bloating, or even night sweats. Sometimes women get severe mood changes, and that can be then redefined as premenstrual dysphoric disorder, which is called PMDD. That requires intervention and often these women are prescribed SSRIs.

However, for general PMS, women can often do a lot on their own. There's a lot of lifestyle modifications that they can do at home and one of the big things is stress management techniques such as meditation and relaxation.

Taking vitamins such as B6 is very important, evening of primrose oil has also been shown to be very effective both for breast tenderness and for moods. There are also ways that you can modify your diet so that you're not using a lot of caffeine or alcohol which can also alleviate some of the symptoms.

Keeping a perimenopause diary or premenstrual diary is a very effective way to monitor your own symptoms.

If the symptoms are severe, you do require your physician to do an assessment and sometimes a referral to a PMS clinic is required for the severe cases.

Presenter: Dr. Bal Pawa, Family Doctor, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Family Doctor

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.