PMDD & Depression

PMDD & DepressionDepression is a lot more understood by mental health professionals and medical science in general, yet the public perception of depression is still lagging well behind. Women with depression are often poorly understood by their partners, peers, friends and family leading to even more isolation, confusion, resentment, and sometimes self harm which is VERY saddening. Depression however can be sporadic in some women which might be a sign of bipolar disorder if accompanied by extreme highs at other times. It can also occur a week or two before the onset of your period. If this is the case then your depression might be linked to PMDD or PMS.

This can be even more confusing to people watching your behaviour as it seems to the outside world to be erratic that for half the month or more you can be fine then a fit of surly, crying, sad sackery (I just made a word up – sue me) hits seemingly without warning. For you however it might be entirely expected as it happens like clockwork just like your period with the two intrinsically linked. So why is this happening? How can you tell if you really have depression? And what are the long term effects? Lets break this down:

Why are PMDD & Depression Linked?

Why are PMDD and Depression Linked?PMDD is a disorder that messes with a women’s hormones as it gets closer and closer to menses. The reasons for the crazy out of control hormonal situation is varied and comes partly from genetic disposition, partly from lifestyle choices, and partly from various things and situations out of your control as well.

This article will not focus on the root causes of PMDD though, suffice to say that your body is not in balance and various hormones are lacking, and others are all too present. It also means that the pathways that carry hormones around the body get clogged up and misused. This in turn creates a knock on effect to the regulation of many parts of the body such as weight management, pain management, and brain chemical management.

There are a number of hormones and brain chemicals that control our moods which can get a severe beating during PMDD or PMS time. Serotonin, Dopamine, and other Neurotransmitters that control your mood regulation and proper functioning are throwing out of balance or cannot work optimally due to a number of hormonally related factors. The result in some women is a crash of your mood going so low to be classed as clinical depression. Others might just get a little low and sad, while other women might become angry and manic even. Each person reacts differently – but without a balanced hormonal state you can end up with depression and even suicidal thoughts.

Symptoms of Depression & PMDD

Symptoms of Depression and PMDDWhat determines actual depression though as opposed to a low mood, or a persistent sadness? While no symptoms of PMDD should be seen as less than others, it is important to know the actual definition, especially if it is becoming so problematic you need to seek medical assistance. The list below contains common primary symptoms of depression.

  • Overwhelming feelings of fear and sadness – or a complete inability to feel anything at all, like emptiness inside of you.
  • Massively decreased interest in any pleasurable activities.
  • Markedly changed appetite, either eating more or less …
  • Changed sleep patterns with you either getting too much, too little, or intermittent sleep.
  • Slowing down of thought and of physical movement nearly every day, or the opposite where you thoughts and actions speed up and you might also feel anxious.
  • Lethargy, feeling tired and run down, both physically and mentally.
  • Feeling emotional such as feeling guilty, hopeless, helpless, worthless, or isolated and alone as well.
  • Feeling like the people closest to you might abandon you at any moment.
  • Troubles with memory and staying focused on what you need to do, or decision you need to make.
  • Recurring thoughts about dying and death in general. Sometimes accompanied by intrusive thoughts about lying down and just switching off your body, stopping breathing etc. Not necessarily suicidal planning, but thoughts of dying.

Long Term Effects of Depression with PMDD

To start with this depression might only come about for a few days ro a week and go away when you begin to bleed. However there is a nastier long term consequence to PMDD & Depression. Continual depressive thoughts cause patterns in your brain that can lead to anxiety and depression beyond the bounds of your PMDD. Smaller fluctuations of hormones will set this off and you might soon be depressed fro ALL of the month not just a few days. Not every women goes that far but it is something to be aware of – but the answer is not to cure depression, it is to understand and solve the root problems that are causing ALL of your PMDD symptoms as well as the depressive states.

To discover more about controlling and curing PMDD naturally without the use of drugs, click below to look into my book on treating PMDD or sever PMS and take control of your hormones and your life!

Get the PMDD Treatment Miracle

PMDD Support For Women Struggling to Cope

There is nothing worse than feeling you are alone. All the pain in the world seems muted when you have support and help, but without aid even minor problems can seem enormous, or can begin to snowball into something much bigger. PMDD support for women is so crucial because of this, but is so hard to come by because PMDD is not an obvious illness to most people. Not only is it not as obvious as something more physical, the very nature of PMDD can turn people away from helping you if you have had some major mood swings around them. To add one more problem most women face in this regard, we often do not actively seek support for PMDD because we are embarrassed about the entire thing!

PMDD Support

So what do we mean exactly when we talk about PMDD Support though? The word support often conjures very different images to peoples minds so I wanted to give you what MY idea of support is. Support to me is a broad network of people and systems that will be there for you when you are having difficulty coping with PMDD and will be connected to your life strongly. See the words in itlaics there, those are the important ones to pay attention to.

  • Network – A network is an extended series of connections that link together. When it comes to people that means your family is a kind of network, your friends are another, often your family and friends are linked as well making the network bigger and stronger. The more people and the better connected they are as well means you have more people understanding and looking out to help you.
  • People – Support is first and foremost about people. Real connections with real people who can show real human compassion and can aid directly. This could be helping by being supportive and understanding, or might be more physical like helping you physically doing errands or taking you where you need to go. Always remember being supported means having the right people around you.
  • Systems – While people are the core of supporting networks in your life, without some sort of agreements, and communications about PMDD and how you need to be supported you will not have the systems in place to enact any of this. An example of a support network without a system might be a family that know the problem, but never speak about it, and never really consider deeply how to help.
  • Connected – This is the glue that ties all of this together; Connections. The people in your network must be connected to you, and connected to the systems that need to be in place to help. It is about clarity and commitment form them and yourself to help make a difference. It is also about YOU making sure you are connected to them and vice versa.

support networks for PMDD

 

Support for PMDD might look a little more complicated than you thought perhaps? Not to worry! It is not really difficult, it is all about understanding hoe to best make use of all the fantastic people in your life and how you should approach this situation. What you need to do is go out and CREATE this support network because they do not often form all the links listed above by itself.

You might have great people in your life, but they do not know each other or how to help you with your PMDD. You might have a few close people who know the problem but this might not be enough to help you when you are really feeling low. You might know the best way for people to manage helping you – but you have not gone out there and broached the subject of PMDD support with them.

It comes down to you knowing your conditions and actively cultivating a great support network. Consider the points above and get out there and do this because it will help you far beyond PMDD. It will also mean you will become a part of THIER support networks if they are having problems with anything in their lives as well. This amazing synergy is what we build amazing lives on!

To help you understand your condition better though, and what you personally need to do to combat it, click here for The PMDD Treatment Miracle eBook that will detail the natural ways you can cure PMDD for good!

 

PMDD Diet Information

PMDD Diet InformationA PMDD diet is the best place to start when making changes to your lifestyle to treat PMDD. Nutrition for PMDD or any sort of health issue is fundamental and can produce effects that are far greater in the long run than medication can ever be. The effects of PMDD nutrition changes are more subtle than medication, or even herbal remedies, but the long term effects once perceived are quite amazing not just for your mental health, but of course for your physical health as well.

There is a certain amount of discipline that you need to follow to get the most out of a diet for PMDD though. It is very easy to say I am going to stick with this, but the practical aspect of actually doing it is most peoples downfall. Lots of things in life get in the way of spending the time and effort to follow a good diet through to its conclusion (a conclusion not being a stop to the diet, but having this kind of diet become a habit). As such, information on how to approach dieting for PMDD is also something you might need to delve into.

The first things you will need to know is a good list of what you should be getting more of in your diet, and the things that you simply should avoid – or at least reduce heavily. Just a few changes week on week will start to make you feel better I guarantee it.

A Good PMDD Diet Includes:

good PMDD NutritionFresh Vegetables – Thsi will come as no surprise to anyone of course, but how often do we really listen to this advice? Most vegetables are very good for us and help our body to function through a range of different nutrients. They also release energy gradually into our body which is very important to keep good hormonal health (more on this below). The FRESH part is important too because out of convenience we tend to opt for our vegetables in processed packages to help them last longer. This often removes a lot of the good nutrients so the little bit of extra effort to keep fresh veges is well worth it!

Low GI Foods – As has been mentioned, all sorts of low GI foods are very important. This means they are foods that slowly break down into glucose in the body to be used to power the body, repair muscles, and more. High GI foods convert to energy too quickly flooding your body which in turn must flood it further with the hormone insulin. A lot of energy gets stored as fat which is not good, but the increase of insulin interferes with other hormones which can produce many PMDD symptoms. The resulting crash of blood sugar also is bad as it hits your mood levels like an anvil causing anxiety, depression and irritability. All this means a PMDD diet with a lot of low GI foods is helpful – here is a handy list.

Good Hydration – Water is the basis for all life so they say, and it is also the basis for good health. Being even a little dehydrates significantly effects our mood and ability to regulate our mood. It also causes the body to function in a less than optimal way. Making sure you drink water regularly during the day is very helpful to reduce PMDD. Make sure this is water too – not just any liquid, water and only water girls!

Alkaline Forming Foods – A controversial method, but one I believe shows good prospects, is an alkaline diet. This basically means eating foods that help your body become less acidic and more alkaline (the opposite of acidic). Studies have shown the body is better at handling physical and mental health much better when it is slightly alkaline which is what our ancestors used to be before civilisation came and then modern industry. The resulting foods we made tend to make us more acidic without us even realising it. Alkaline foods are foods that are much more natural, non processed, and low in sugar. This goes well with the idea of low GI foods too – you can find more about alkaline dieting here.

High Protein Foods – Protein is a very important nutrient we get from food. It is responsible for renewing the body and too little can make us feel tired and fatigued which will make worse your PMDD. It has been found that many women with PMDD actually have quite a low intake of protein so bumping this up in your diet might produce good results, make you feel more energetic, and less susceptible to depression, irritability, and anxiety. Good protein foods include eggs, tofu, chicken, lean meat, and limit amount of dairy foods. Make sure to include this in your PMDD nutritian plan.

Eliminate These For Better PMDD Nutrition

Bad PMDD NutritionProcessed and Sugary Foods – Foods that come in boxes, cans, jars and bags are not alwasy processed foods – but most of them are. These are foods that, as has been mentioned, have had many nutrients stripped form them as they are processed and refined making them high GI. They are often also imbued with more and more salt and/or sugar which just adds to the problem. Whenever possible avoid these processed foods. Some of the worst offenders are crisps/chips, doughnuts, white bread, many cereals, juice (except freshly squeezed) and many more.

Non-Organic Meat – Since hormonal imbalances are the root cause of PMDD we must be careful when eating certain meats especially with chicken. Many animals are being pumped full of growth hormones so that they can be bigger, more meatier, and get that way quicker so farmers can sell them to market fats for quick money. This has caused serious issues for these animals for one, but for us humans we are ingesting a lot of those excess hormones every time we eat them! These additional hormones cause havoc inside our bodies especially for women with PMS and PMDD. Make sure to buy organic meats as often as you possible can to avoid this.

More Diet Tips for PMDD

PMDD Diet TipsNever Shop on an Empty Stomach – When you shop on an empty stomach you will tend to over purchase, and you will most likely buy impulse items which are not the ones you really want. When you feel well fed and go shopping the food urgency is off and you are much more free to make informed buying decisions.

Keep a Shopping List – Simple enough, try not to just remember what you need, write it down and keep to the plan!

Never Buy Snacks – Even if you think you are just going to buy a few snacks for the cupboard just in case friends drop in, or you want to reward yourself later – do not do it. All snacks in a house WILL be eaten and eaten soon as soon as you feel hungry and it is the easiest tastiest thing to grab. It is human nature, but if you do not have them this issue does not come up and you might snack on fruit or veges instead!

Get Help – Do not think you can to do this PMDD diet alone. Get the support of a friend, your family, your partner or kids. There is no shame in this – it is a positive thing and you will find everyone will be willing to help if it makes that week before the period a much better place for everyone!

Click Here For a Complete PMDD Treatment Solution!

What Herbal Treatment for PMDD Is There?

herbal treatment for pmddOnce you become disenchanted with the world of pharmaceutical drugs, instant cure pills, and lab made miracle cures that really only mask symptoms of various conditions, one place you might be looking into is the realm of herbal remedies. A herbal treatment for PMDD might be just what you need once you realise that a more natural solution to this disorder will be of more benefit to you, but where to start, and also, does it really work?

I am a big believer in the usage of additional herbal and vitamin supplements to help with PMDD and many other conditions as they do not come with the sort of side effects of drugs and used correctly can work in harmony with your natural healing processes rather than fighting against them. However, no matter how big a believer in herbs and vitamins I am I do know they are not the ONLY answer. Too many try to peddle herbal potions and tonics that claim to cure so many things when really it is just one piece in a more elaborate puzzle – you need MORE than just herbs.

That being said, they are a very helpful addition and for PMDD there are a couple that can helps such as:

  • Magnesium– Taking 250-350 milligrams of magnesium daily can also greatly reduce PMDD symptoms.  It can help boost mood, improve sleep quality, reduce cramping and pain, and even help reduce stress. Again be aware of how much magnesium you already consume from food as well.
  • Chasteberry- The chasteberry, or monk’s pepper, has long been used to help treat women suffering from PMDD.  While doctors are uncertain exactly how it works, studies show that this herbal remedy helps to alleviate many PMDD symptoms, including irritability, headaches, and mood swings.
  • St. John’s Wort- This herb is known as nature’s antidepressant, and numerous studies have shown it to be as effective as or more effective than traditional antidepressants.  If depression commonly accompanies your PMDD, you may wish to consider these supplements to provide the relief that you need.

There are many more, if you would like to find out about these and the other steps you need to get rid of PMDD forever, click here to look into the PMDD Treatment Miracle.

Coping with PMDD

coping with PMDDPMDD is a horrible and often terrifying condition that puts you on a rollercoaster ride of emotional anguish every few weeks. I remember knowing that is was coming and that made it worse too, I would be anxious and worried even though I felt ok after my period because I knew soon I would turn into what felt like another person. Coping with PMDD felt like trying to stay calm asI slowly escalated up a huge slope slowly as if on a roller coaster, knowing I would soon plunge down … and I had no safety belt!

So what can you do to cope with PMDD? How can you deal with this problem?

Well, first of all coping is not curing – you can treat PMDD in a natural manner by changes in your lifestyle such as diet, exercise, herbal remedies and other things that all tie together to rebalance your hormones and stop this from causing major mood disorder and physical pain.

However this take a little bit of time, as you change your lifestyle what is the best way to cope with any lingering symptoms that might still eventuate?

Well, assuming you are not going down the route of drugs and medication there are a few short term coping strategies you can use while you work on the larger picture of curing the root cause to help you cope with PMDD better such as:

Exercise: Decently intense exercise releases endorphins in your brain which make you feel a lot better. It will also work off some of the stress and worry that might build up too. A good exercise session that is more than just a walk will do amazing things for you short term AND long term.

Meditation: I am not into anything mystical or anything, but meditation is a way that you can slow down your mind and clear it of clutter for some time. Regular meditations when you are in the PMDD danger zone and out of it can really help you stay calm and reduce immediate stress.

Mood Boosting Foods: There are some foods that you can include regularly in your diet that have been shown to greatly enhance your mood such as turkey, oranges and even avocados.

However, all of this must be backed up by constant lifestyle changes, healthy eating and natural supplements to really overcome PMDD fast. Find out more about this in the PMDD Treatment Miracle.

Medication for PMDD – Pros and Cons

medication for PMDDI am a huge advocate for natural solutions to many health problems. In fact, I believe that a huge number of ailments do not need any sort of drugs to clear up as drugs and medication in general are usually designed to just cover up the symptoms of a disorder and not cure it from deep down at the root cause. So are medications for PMDD useful at all, or should they be put back in the cupboard in favour of natural treatment methods?

Well I believe this is a question you really need to ask yourself as we all have a choice in this life on many things including our health. Let look at the pros and cons.

Pros of medications for PMDD

  • Immediate relief of symptoms
  • Ongoing ease of symptom relief
  • Little to no effort involved

Cons of Medications for PMDD

  • Many side effects that a lot of women do experience
  • does not treat the root cause of PMDD
  • Can lead to an addiction to certain drugs
  • Only masks symptoms so when drug taking stops they will return
  • Further clogs your body with more chemicals that cause knock on effects

For balance, not everyone suffers the negative side effects of drugs, but no one becomes better by taking drugs. Some people improve their lifestyles while on drugs and when they stop they find their conditions lessened or gone – but most of the time this is NOT the case.

You have the choice to make, the easy and short term path of relief from pain and anguish using PMDD medications, or the longer and harder road that leads to a much brighter future for a lot longer.

natural remedies for PMDDIf you have PMDD you might have been taking some drugs to stopt he symptoms, or you might have at least been offered them by the doctor. However, as many women are starting to realise, medication and one shot solutions are not long term solutions with lasting impacts. They are instead band aid solutions to mask symptoms; they do not tackle the root causes of PMDD and the hormonal imbalance in your body. Natural remedies for PMDD might instead be something you are looking into to stop that last week or two of your menstrual cycle from becoming the time of despair, anger, pain, and loathing that it usually is.

But what is a natural remedy for PMDD? What do they entail? Is it just a big sham, or are they the holistic natural cure that you need?

Well I can say from first hand experience that natural remedies are NOT a scam, they are not a placebo, and they work, and work well. However, they are not what a lot of people believe them to be. Some have images of eating strange plants and putting faith in some for of mysticism which is total baloney! A natural remedy for any condition like PMDD is actually a whole set of lifestyle changes that you need to do to bring your body back into hormonal balance.

For instance, in my PMDD Treatment Miracle e-book I promote many different ways that all tie together, and influence each other to form a holistic healing approach. Just a few of these methods are:

  • Dietary changes
  • Stress Relief (more important than you might think!)
  • Herbal and vitamin supplements (yes, they are there but they are not the only thing)
  • Changes to Sleeping patterns
  • Exercises regimes
  • And more

This is not just making herbal teas. Those things help but nothing worth doing is ever achieved by doing something very simple – it is something that should change your whole attitude towards your health and implement what natural resources you can get at the same time.

For more information on exactly how to apply these things click the link below to look into my e-book on the matter.

The PMDD Treatment Miracle

PMDD and Bipolar Disorder

PMDD and bipolar disorderAnother woman contacted me asking if there was a link between PMDD and bipolar disorder which I thought I would answer here. This is one of the things that makes PMDD such a difficult subject. Some people do not believe you have any problem just thinking it is some excuse to be bitchy like PMS and put you down as if it was a minor thing when you felt like killing yourself … The other issue is that serious mental illness can compound the issue, or divert from the issue.

The thing is that bipolar disorder is a serious problem that has many similarities between it and PMDD. The wild mood swings for instance, the deep depressions, the sometimes cyclical nature of the whole process.

There are however a number of differenced between the conditions such as with PMDD you do not suffer any ‘mania’ or extreme highs. After the onset of bleeding you will stop the downward symptoms of PMDD and normalise while bipolar sufferers can become so manic it wears them out and causes a serious mood crash.

There is no link between PMDD and bipolar that I know of, but what this does bring up is that someone with PMDD can also have other disorders as well which is very dangerous as you might only become diagnosed or one or the other.

The easiest way to determine these things is to track your symptoms at times outside of the last week or two of the menstrual cycle. If you are suffering from some sort of mental or physical symptoms then – it may be from an unrelated condition. You might just have that or you might have bipolar, or depression, or a thousands other problems AS WELL as PMDD.

Be careful in self diagnosis, talk to your doctor, but we aware yourself of what all symptoms are and when they occur to be better informed!

PMDD & PCOS – Is There a Link?

pcos and pmddSomeone emailed me asking if there was any links between PMDD and another disorder called Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). I do not have an exact answer to this as I cannot find any scientific proof of a link but I did find a number of people online that had both conditions at the same time making this seem at least plausible.

Since PCOS is also a disorder that has a lot to do with hormonal imbalances I would suspect that some women will be susceptible to having both PCOS and PMDD while their bodies are not balanced correctly.

PCOS seems to stem from a deficiency with the hormone insulin which must be produced in much greater amounts to use glucose in the blood stream properly. This produces more androgens in a women’s body as well as clogging the hormone pathways leading to dysfunction in the ovaries and many other symptoms as well.

I would say that any women who is having serious hormonal problems is at risk of a great number of conditions including PMDD and PCOS however I have no conclusive proof. In any case, the only cure for PCOS or PMDD is to normalise those hormones using a natural and holistic set of changes in your life rather than flinging drugs at the problem.

PMS vs. PMDD – The Difference Between PMS and PMDD

pms vs pmddMany people wonder at what the difference between PMS and PMDD really is as the conditions are both quite misunderstood. PMS Vs PMDD can be described quite simply in some ways but this can leave you feeling a little short changed. So first of all let’s look at the simple version followed by the longer more in depth version.

So, simply put, PMDD is basically PMS but MUCH more severe in regards to its symptoms and effects on your life.

Now many women will of course have various degrees of severity of PMS so there must be a line drawn in the sand to what a full disorder is and is not. This is what a few years ago the American Psychiatric Association classified PMDD as a proper disorder in its view and set down a few guidelines on what constitutes PMDD over PMS. The following illustrates this:

At least five of these symptoms must be present during the last week of the menstrual cycle, they must start to ease within a few days of menses onset, and they must be absent in the first week after menstruation.  At least one of the five symptoms must be one of the first four criteria on the list.

  • Markedly depressed mood, feelings of hopelessness, or self-deprecating thoughts
  • Marked anxiety, tension, feelings of being “keyed up” or “on edge”
  • Marked affective lability (e.g., feeling suddenly sad or tearful or increased sensitivity to rejection)
  • Persistent and marked anger or irritability or increased interpersonal conflicts
  • Decreased interest in usual activities (e.g., work, school, friends, hobbies)
  • Subjective sense of difficulty in concentrating
  • Lethargy, easy fatigability, or marked lack of energy
  • Marked change in appetite, overeating, or specific food cravings
  • Hypersomnia or insomnia
  • A subjective sense of being overwhelmed or out of control
  • Other physical symptoms, such as breast tenderness or swelling, headaches, joint or muscle pain, a sensation of bloating, or weight gain

In addition to having five of the symptoms listed above, a patient must also have these symptoms to the degree that they interfere with work, school, or social activities and relationships and they must not be symptoms of an underlying disorder.  These symptoms must occur for at least two consecutive menstrual cycles as well before a definitive diagnosis can be made.

Now while this is quite a strict set of criteria you might be wondering if you do not meet these standards but still have PMS to such a severe level it is close – do you have PMDD? Well really it does not matter, if you are being laid low because of problems in your menstrual cycle you need help no matter what classification you have.

In this case, the PMDD treatment miracle will help you with severe PMS or PMDD as they are the same thing. The difference is simply in that the medical community must draw a line somewhere just as they do with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and more.

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