Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)

WHAT DOES HAVING PMDD FEEL LIKE?

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is a cyclical, hormone-based disorder comprising emotional, physical and behavioural symptoms. PMDD can cause significant distress, impacting your daily functioning and your quality of life.

You may experience physical and emotional symptoms that happen due to hormonal changes occurring a week or two before your period, during the Luteal Phase. These usually pass once menstruation begins.

Your experiences may be confused for premenstrual syndrome (PMS), but PMDD symptoms are more severe and can cause significant distress in your life, and affect your ability to function.

You may experience various physical symptoms, such as bloating, extreme fatigue and intense food cravings during this time.

You may also experience emotional symptoms that feel intense and overwhelming. You may feel extreme sadness, and even suicidal thoughts that you wouldn’t normally have. You may also feel detached from things that you would normally care about, including your friends and family, work and hobbies.

You may also feel very tense and on edge, and may have anxious thoughts that are difficult to keep under control. You may feel these moods swing very suddenly and it’s hard to keep track of how you truly feel.

You may feel alone with your experiences, or may find it difficult to understand what you are going through, because PMDD is under-recognised.

Although these experiences may feel overwhelming, we can help support you in coping with your symptoms.

TREATMENT

The mind and body are connected, therefore an important way to combat both your physical and emotional symptoms is to improve your diet and exercise, as well as addressing your psychological experiences.

Our programme, MindHealth, can help support you by combining psychotherapy with nutritional support.

Psychotherapy can help you understand the link between your thoughts, feelings and behaviours. Psychotherapy can help you challenge irrational thinking patterns and learn new healthy coping mechanisms.

Nutritional therapy can explore any imbalances in your body through functional testing. Taking your personal biology and your lifestyle into account, you can discover the optimal foods for you to eat through nutrition coaching, in order to improve your mental wellbeing and reduce your physical symptoms.

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Feel well

Tell us what is going on for you, and let us explain how we can help

SELF-HELP FOR PMDD

  • Get to know your cycle – track your symptoms and plan events accordingly
  • Create a self-care support plan: include helpful coping strategies, e.g. journaling about your experiences
  • Anti-inflammatory diet – avoid caffeine and alcohol
  • Talk to family/friends – this may help reduce the feeling of isolation that women with PMDD may feel
  • Start an exercise routine – yoga may help reduce menstrual pain, and can help you understand and connect with your emotions