An extreme form of PMS known as Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) affects three to eight percent of women in their infancy. PMDD is characterized by emotional and physical symptoms that occur in the week or two before menstruation and significantly interfere with daily life..
The symptoms of PMDD can vary from woman to woman but typically include emotional and physical symptoms. Emotional symptoms of PMDD may include:
1. Mood swings: A woman with PMDD may experience significant changes in mood, such as feeling irritable, angry, or anxious.
2. Depression: Women with PMDD may experience feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or worthlessness.
3. Anxiety: Women with PMDD may experience feelings of nervousness or fear.
4. Tension or feeling on edge: Women with PMDD may feel tension or feel like they are on edge.
5. Decreased interest in daily activities: Women with PMDD may lose interest in activities they once enjoyed.
6. Difficulty concentrating: Women with PMDD may have trouble concentrating or focusing on tasks.
7. Fatigue: Women with PMDD may feel extremely tired or lethargic.
8. Appetite changes: Women with PMDD may experience changes in appetite, including food cravings or overeating.
Physical symptoms of PMDD may include:
1. Breast tenderness or swelling: Women with PMDD may experience breast tenderness or swelling.
2. Bloating: Women with PMDD may experience bloating or water retention.
3. Headaches: Women with PMDD may experience headaches or migraines.
4. Joint or muscle pain: Women with PMDD may experience joint or muscle pain.
5. Sleep disturbances: Women with PMDD may experience difficulty sleeping or excessive sleepiness.
6. Hot flashes or chills: Women with PMDD may experience hot flashes or chills.
The symptoms of PMDD typically occur in the week or two before menstruation and subside within a few days after the start of menstruation. The severity of PMDD symptoms can vary from mild to severe and may interfere with daily life, relationships, and work productivity.
There are several treatment options available for Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), ranging from lifestyle changes to medication and therapy. The treatment options for PMDD are aimed at reducing the severity of symptoms and improving quality of life. The following are some of the most common treatment options for PMDD:
1. Lifestyle changes: Making changes to your lifestyle can help reduce the severity of PMDD symptoms. This may include things like getting regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, reducing caffeine and alcohol intake, and getting enough sleep.
2. Medications: Antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), have been found to be effective in reducing the severity of PMDD symptoms. Hormonal birth control, such as the pill, patch, or ring, can also be effective in reducing symptoms by regulating hormone levels.
3. Nutritional supplements: Some studies have found that certain nutritional supplements, such as calcium, magnesium, and vitamin B6, can help reduce the severity of PMDD symptoms.
4. Alternative therapies: Some women find relief from PMDD symptoms through alternative therapies, such as acupuncture, massage, or herbal supplements. However, before attempting any of these options, it is essential to discuss them with a healthcare professional.
As PMDD has a significant impact on quality of life, and traditional treatment options such as medication and therapy may not be accessible or feasible for all women. However, online counseling and therapy have emerged as a promising alternative for women with PMDD.
Online counseling and therapy have several advantages over traditional in-person therapy. For one, it is more accessible, particularly for women who live in remote areas or have mobility issues. Online counseling and therapy can also be more affordable, making it a more feasible option for women who may not have the financial resources to access traditional therapy.
Online counseling and therapy can also be more convenient, allowing women to access support from the comfort of their own homes. This is particularly important for women with PMDD who may experience debilitating physical symptoms that make it difficult to leave the house.
Several studies have found online counseling and therapy to be effective for the treatment of PMDD. A randomized controlled trial published in the Journal of Women’s Health found that online cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) was effective in reducing PMDD symptoms. The study compared online CBT to a waitlist control group and found that women who received online CBT had significant improvements in mood and quality of life.
Another study published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research compared the effectiveness of in-person CBT to online CBT for the treatment of PMDD. The study found that both in-person and online CBT were effective in reducing PMDD symptoms. However, women who received online CBT reported higher levels of satisfaction with the treatment.
Online counseling and therapy can also provide women with PMDD with a sense of anonymity and privacy, which may be particularly important for women who feel stigmatized or embarrassed by their symptoms. This can make it easier for women to open up about their experiences and seek the help they need.
In summary, PMDD is a severe form of PMS that can significantly impact a woman’s quality of life. Online counseling and therapy have emerged as a promising alternative for women with PMDD, offering accessibility, affordability, convenience, and privacy. While online counseling and therapy may not be appropriate for all women with PMDD, it can provide an effective and accessible option for many women seeking support and treatment.