Are You Suffering With These Telltale Signs of PMDD?

Mar 13, 2024
Are You Suffering With These Telltale Signs of PMDD?
Have your premenstrual symptoms become impossible to bear? If you experience intense mood swings, depression, anxiety, or physical problems, you could have premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Learn more. 

Almost anyone who has a period can tell tales about uncomfortable period symptoms, from unwanted mood swings to debilitating cramps. However, some women experience severe emotional menstrual symptoms and require treatment.

Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) is a condition with symptoms that disturb your emotional equilibrium and comfort as your period approaches. A significant number of women struggle with PMDD, about 10%. The good news is treatment can help.

The Clarity Psychiatric Care team can help you get relief from distressing PMDD symptoms that interfere with your life. Dr. Amy Carnall and Cristina Sertway, APN, PMHNP-BC, have valuable experience in diagnosing and effectively treating PMDD, so your days and nights don’t have to be disrupted by it. The team is invested in providing you with the most advanced treatment, always accompanied by a deeply caring approach. 

Could you have premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)?

You may be diagnosed with PMDD when you visit us if you’ve been experiencing upsetting symptoms like intense mood swings, panic attacks, or trouble focusing. You might also notice feeling increasingly annoyed by various triggers, along with anxiety and depression. You may even feel inexplicably angry. 

In addition to emotional symptoms, physical indicators of PMDD include fatigue, headaches, distracting cravings for certain foods, or binge eating. If you have an eating disorder, this could trigger harmful behavior like forcing yourself to vomit, laxative misuse, or stringent dieting. 

A very serious concern is if you have suicidal thoughts, which are also possible with PMDD.

It’s critical to seek treatment for PMDD to gain relief from these life-altering symptoms and enhance your long-term quality of life since PMDD can affect some people through menopause. 

Do we know what causes PMDD?

There are several thoughts on PMDD causes. The hormonal fluctuation typical before your period may provoke PMDD symptoms, and the brain chemical that impacts your appetite and sleep habits and acts as a mood regulator — serotonin — may also play a part. 

You’re at higher risk for developing PMDD if you have family members with it, if you’ve been diagnosed with anxiety or depression, or if you have PMS before your period. You’re also more likely to be affected by PMDD if you have a history of trauma or abuse. 

Can I get help with PMDD?

Fortunately, there are treatments that Dr Carnall and Ms. Sertway can recommend. 

After an in-depth conversation about your medical history and current mental health diagnoses, we’ll likely ask you to track any PMDD symptoms for a couple of cycles to look for patterns. 

If you have five or more PMDD symptoms with at least one that’s mood-related and we can disqualify other diagnoses like depression or a reproductive disorder, you’ll likely be diagnosed with PMDD. 

Treatments for PMDD treatments include:

  • Anti-anxiety medications
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Antidepressants, which can correct serotonin levels
  • Hormonal birth control
  • Stress management techniques, including yoga, meditation, and deep breathing
  • Psychotherapy
  • Dietary changes
  • Increasing your daily physical activity

There is hope if you have PMDD. With treatment and care, you can feel like yourself again. 

Call our office to schedule an appointment with us, or book one online