Period Talk: Lets Talk PMS, PMDS And How It Affects Mental Illnesses.

You get a little too sensitive, you want to cry. You probably do, and then you wake up the next morning or so and your under wear has a red smudge where your vagina sits

Signs of PMS/ picture courtesy of Practo

PMS, PMDS and existing mental illnesses are all period-related. This article tackles the effects of PMS, PMDS and mental illnesses. 

Sometimes it feels like the world is on fire and you are in the middle of it. While everyone goes about their normal day. Nothing feels right for you, in your body-mind.

The female menstrual cycle is controlled by the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. After the ovulation phase, the levels of estrogen and progesterone drop and with them neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine also drop. The effect of these is felt in varying ways, by different women all over the world.

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Surely enough though your energy levels will drop. A strange dark cloud approaching from a distance and it is coming your way. It swallows you whole and life around you spiral out of control. Like everything is wrong and you are too.

You get a little too sensitive, you want to cry. You probably do, and then you wake up the next morning or so and your underwear has a red smudge where your vagina sits.

“Aha!” That makes a lot of sense. It does not get better though, some of you will have been under immense lower abdominal pain. Pain that makes you tired of feeling pain. Pain that makes you want to lay on your stomach, or in a ball, or on the edge of the bed with your head rested on the form of your thighs.

For some, this pain will go on. For some, they may be relieved the next day. For some, anxiety and depression never leaves. It only takes a light kind of darkness, only to worsen each time of the month. A tortuous cycle is unique to womanhood. Controlled by two little old hormones estrogen and progesterone.

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PMS is a premenstrual syndrome and affects up to 75% of women. PMS is a side effect of the drop of neurotransmitters; dopamine and serotonin. These result in women feeling a drop in mood, an increase in anxiety and depression. Some women who have existing mental illnesses experience what we call severe PMS.

The premenstrual dysphoric disorder is more severe symptoms of PMS and affects between 5-8% of people who experience menstrual cycles. This individual’s PMS comprises of severe bouts of anxiety and depression, can lead to panic attacks. Lots and lots of crying and loss of interest in daily activities.

The darker side of womanhood is that women who have existing mental illnesses take a deeper dip into depression. It is a dark time I imagine, for individuals who may suffer from body dysmorphia. Those dealing with bipolar.

The effects of PMS are felt by individuals in varied ways. Each individual is unique to their own history and genetic history of course. It is also an experience felt by more than half the world’s population. Surely more conversations about these experiences should be shared and should certainly be heard.

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