This Could Be What's To Blame If You Suffer From Severe PMS
Periods. They aren't much fun but they are a part of everyday life for a whole lot of us and with them often comes the joy that is PMS.
But if you suffer severe cramps and other symptoms of premenstrual syndrome then scientists might have the answer of what's to blame - and it's all down to your genetics.
Despite the fact that most women suffer from painful PMS symptoms of some kind or another, there's really very little research into the condition. This is partly because it has traditionally been largely dismissed (oh HI, sexism), often thanks to people not really believing it exists or is a legitimate complaint.
Presumably these are people who don't have a uterus and who are unaware of what it's like to feel like an internal organ is being ripped out of your body using a rusty fork once a month, but as a result we don't know all that much about it.
What we do know, however, is that for about 5% of those who menstruate, PMS has symptoms so extreme that they can interfere with the sufferer's daily life be that as pain, mental distress or a combination. This is a condition called premenstrual dysphoric disorder (also known as PMDD) and which is often misdiagnosed and which also has an extremely high suicide rate of 15% of diagnosed sufferers.
That said, a new study into PMDD and PMS does explain why some of us experience these more extreme symptoms than others and - bad news - it's all thanks to your genetics.
According to the research, some of us just have a genetic predisposition to be more sensitive to the fluctuations of sex hormones progesterone and oestrogen, which naturally alter throughout your menstrual cycle. However, they did also find that in extreme cases of PMDD, cutting off progesterone can totally stop symptoms, meaning that it is obviously a biological defect and not a figment of the imagination in the way it has often traditionally been painted.
Well dUH, but it's still nice to have proof, no?
So what should you do? If you do suffer from extreme pain on or before your periods, you should definitely go and speak to your GP about what can be done to help.
The good news is that there are loads of things they can try, but knowledge is power and don't let anyone minimise your pain.
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