PMS - Pre Menstrual Syndrome

Pre Menstrual Syndrome - PMS

 

PMS is a real disorder !  it is classified as a variety of symptoms which may or may not combine together which occur repeatedly prior to the period or "pre-menstrual".  Some of the most common symptoms are:  bloating, breast tenderness, fever, irritability, moodiness, weepy, emotional, diarrhea, constipation, head aches, migraines,   confusion, body ahces, fatigue, and cravings.

PMS can have an effect on the circulatory system, digestive system, endocrine system and nervous system due to hormonal changes before a woman has her period. It is generally accepted as a hormonal imbalance of Estrogen and Progesterone which creates these PMS symptoms. 

PMS can be severe and last anywhere from 13 days before you have your period or just a few hours before a bleed starts.  Symptoms such as a fever before your period starts can be debilitating and annoying if it happens month after month.  There are many natural ways to help relieve these discomforts and even cure them.   

PMS has either been evoloving or now beeing more openly talked about.  Over 50 years ago PMS was a rarely talked about or an expressed topic in public but now in the modern world it seems more women are effected by this monthly discomfort than not.    

You can have a positive effect to decrease the symtpoms of PMS by doing simple lifestyle changes.  By changing your diet to a whole foods diet similar to that put out by Acubalance Wellness Centre can have a dramatically positive effect.  Basically by changing to a whole foods diet, decreasing wheat, dairy, sugar and coffee will help regulate hormone imbalances.  You can also begin to exercise or modify your exercise to help with stress relief and promotion the circulation of blood.  Decreasing stress and taking time out for ones self is of the utmost importance.  Stress plays havoc with the bodies hormal health, anything we can do to regulate these hormones will have a positive effect.  

 

If you have done the diet changes, modified your exercise routine and changed the way you handle stress and are not experiencing relief from the PMS symptoms Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs can help you on your way to cure your PMS. 

 

PMS - Fever

PMS Fever is an acute fever which recurrs regularly before each period or only during some cycles.  This type of fever will generally be a low grade fever that is commonly more prominant at night.  Because these fevers are common at night they are commonly accompanied by night sweats.  If you are having a fever before your period there are many ways to help decrease this condition.  

 

PMS fevers can be decreased by eliminating specific foods in your diet such as alcohol, coffee or other acidic foods.  Taking care to follow a relaxing routine in the hours before bed with mild exercise (such as a walk) can also reduce a PMS fever.  Cucumber water, cool mint tea and lots of vegetables can also help decrease the feverish feeling.

There are 4 main causes all having slighlty different presentations: 

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

1. Liver and Kidney Yin Deficiency 

PMS fever which goes up and down like the tide (tidal fever) beginning days before your bleed and possibly lasting into the first few days of your period. This type of fever generaly is very mild pre Menstrual but gets worse after the period has started. The period usually has scanty amounts of blood and is regular or slightly thicker blood.  This is all accompanied by the fever before your period. 

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Yin - clear heat, clear PMS fever

Herbal Medicine Formulas: Liang Di Tang  or Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan  or Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San

 

2.Heat in Blood

PMS fever which is greater in intensity (high fever)  than the above case.  It's intensity can easily cause skin eruptions such as rashes, acne  boils or a generalized intenese red complexion.  This intenese PMS fever also creates insomnia and night sweats.  

Accompanied with the PMS fever is a generally heavier than normal period with fresh red blood and a prolonged period of spotting.  The fever will usually lessen once a heavy flow has started.  

Principle of Treatment: - clear heat - cool blood to reduce the PMS fever

Herbal Medicine Formula: Qing Jing Tang

 

3. Qi and Blood Deficiency

This type of PMS fever generally occurs just prior and during the period.  It is overall less intense than the above cases.  Along with the PMS feverishness women often will sweat easily, feel fatigued and possibly dizzi.  They will look slightly pale and have a short or light period but in some cases a heavy pale bleed can occour.  

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Spleen Qi to harmonize Ying - nourish blood, to reduce PMS fever.

Herbal Medicine Formula: Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang

 

4. Qi and Blood stagnation.

PMS fever due to blood stagnation will often begin before the period begins and get worse until the period begins.  Once the bleed starts the fever which started pre menstrually will abate during the bleed.  Along with the fever women will ofte have a dark red flow of thick blood which contains clots.  The period will be very painful and cramping will also be present pre menstrually.   Women may notice that their skin is more prone to cystic, deep seated acne and have a slightly grey or "ashen" look to it.  Although listed under PMS fever, this pattern is very common to cause painful periods.   

Principle of Treatment: - promote circulation and reduce PMS fever

Herbal Medicine Formula: Tao Hong Si Wu Tang or Xue Fu Zhu Yu Tang

 

Breast Tenderness - PMS

Breast Tenderness before the period is a very common symptoms of PMS.  The breasts may be painful, swollen, sore or itchy.  This may last for only a few hours before the period comes or up too a week or more depending on the severity of the imbalance.  According to Chinese Medicine diagnosis,  if the whole breast is more sore there is a kidney aspect which needs to be addressed, if the nipple is more itchy and sore then the liver needs to be investigated.  There may be lumps which either appear or get larger during the pre menstrual phase.  These lumps should be diagnosed by your doctor to see if they are benign or something that needs medical attention.  


Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

1. Liver Qi stagnation.

PMS breast distention which is sore and the nipples are commonly itchy.  There will most likley be irritability present in the PMS symptoms as well and will be aggravated during times of high stress.  

Principle of Treatment: - sooth Liver, course Qi

Herbal Medicine Formula: Chai Hu Shu Gan San or Xiao Yao San

 

2. Liver and Kidney Yin Deficiency 

PMS breast tenderness which lasts until last few days of period.  There is commonly a heat senation found more prominant in the evenings.  There may be dry skin, dry eyes, ....

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Liver and Kidney Yin

Herbal Medicine Formula: Yi Guan Jian

 

PMS Headaches

A PMS Headache is diagnosed when a headache goes away once the period has come or within the first day or 2 of bleeding.  These headaches are recurrent, happening before the period and cannot be diagnosed after 1 headache.  There are many other types of headaches which may be associated with the periods but will occur at different times (ie- around ovulation or post-menstrual).

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Blood Deficiency

A Blood deficient PMS headache will be dull in nature and begin just before the period starts and last throughout the period.  There is commonly dizziness, scanty bleeding, dry skin, dry hair, weak nails and possible fatigue which accompanie this pattern of PMS Headache.

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Qi and blood to relieve pain

Herbal Medicine Formula: Ba Zhen Tang w/ gou qi zi and he shou wu

 

Liver Fire

PMS headaches which begin just before or just as the period starts, they are more severe in nature than the above pattern and are generally most painful around the  tempals, behind the eyes or top of head.  There is also PMS dizziness, irritability, red dry eyes, a wiry rapid pulse and a red tongue.   

Principle of Treatment: - clear Liver fire and nourish Liver Yin 

Herbal Medicine Formula: Qi Ju Di Huang Wan

 

Blood Stasis

PMS Headache due to blood stasis is generally caused by  trauma or chronic illness and will give rise too fixed stabbing pain.  

Principle of Treatment: - promote circulation. - eliminate Stasis to relieve pain

Herbal Medicine Formula: Tong Qiao Huo Xue Tang (common headache formula)

 

PMS Body Aching

Body Aches before the period is generally due to one of two different patterns in Chinese Medicine.  

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

 

Blood Deficiency

Body Aches Pre Menstrually and gets worse during the last few days of the period.  There will also be numbness, pain and weakness of the limbs (mostly lower limbs).  The period will have a light bleed and be common to have long cycles.  The tongue will be pale and possibly thin while the pulse will be weak.  

Principle of Treatment:  nourish and harmonize blood to lube tendons/muscles

Herbal Medicine Formula: Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang

 

Blood Stasis pre-menstrual aches/pain in low back/knees, cycle may be delayed (generally)

Principle of Treatment: - move and nourish Blood, warm up meridians to relieve pain.

Herbal Medicine Formula: Chen Tong Tang

 

PMS Diarrhea

PMS Diarrhea is diagnosed as recurrent loose or water and possibly urgent bowel movements pre menstrual.   The diarrhea will coincide with the few days before the cycle starts or just as the cycle is starting.  Most of the time the diarrhea decreases and goes back to normal within a day or two of the period starting.  Diet can often influence the diarrhea but is not the main cause of the diarrhea.

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

 

Spleen Qi Deficiency

PMS diarrhea which occurs pre period and during period.  The stools are soft and possibly watery and are accompanied by fatigue.  The cycles are commonly heavy with pale blood but may also have lighter bleeding with pale blood.  There also may be pain accompanied with the diarrhea, in this case there is also a stress component accompanied with this pattern.  

Principle of Treatment: - strengthen Spleen Qi - transform Damp

Herbal Medicine Formula: Shen Ling Bai Du San, Tong Xie Yao Fang  (if painful diarrhea)

 

Kidney Qi Deficiency

Pre Menstrual Diarrhea which occurs during the beginning of the period and lasts throughout most of the period bleed. With this pattern of diarrhea there is common low back acheyness, frequent urination, and generalized fatigue.  

Principle of Treatment - nourish KI Qi

Herbal Medicine Formula: Si Shen Wan

 

 

PMS Nose Bleeding and PMS Vomitting   

Pre Menstrual bleeding in other areas besides the vagina can be called Vicarious bleeding.  A few examples are nose bleeds pre menstrually or vomitting of blood.  This could be due to endometrial tissue found in other areas due to extreme cases of endometriosis or something as simple as hormonal imbalances.  

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Liver Fire

Bright red bleeding before the period starts which is alleviated after the cycle begins. There is also commonly anger or irritability, lower rib area discomfort, red eyes

Principle of Treatment: - sooth LR - clear LR Heat - cool blood

Herbal Medicine Formula: Qing Gan Ying Jing Tang

 

Stomach Heat

PMS bleeding can be caused by a pattern called stomach heat which is related to the above pattern. Bleeding can occur from the nose, mouth or vomitting and be in a large amount with a fresh red color.  There will also be an excessive appetite, bad breath, sore tender gums, an excessive thirst and a red face.

Principle of Treatment: - purge ST Fire

Herbal Medicine Formula: San Huang Si Wu Tang

 

Kidney and Lung Yin Deficiency Heat

Bleeding which occurs mildly throughout the period but in small amounts. The small amount of bleeding will be brightred in color. 

Principle of Treatment: - nourish KI LU Yin

Herbal Medicine Formula: Shun Jing Tan + Niu Xi

 

PMS Canker Sores

PMS canker sores or mouth ulcers which appear pre period.  They may be pale and dull in character or red and burning with a firy edge on them.  For Canker sores to be Pre menstrual related they need to come and go directly related to the period. 

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Stomach Heat

PMS cancer sores which occur just before and during cycle which are very painful.  There is also bad breath, heavy-deep-red menstrual bleeding, large appetite, red face and sore gums which bleed easily.   

Principle of Treatment: - clear Stomach Fire 

Herbal Medicine Formula: Qing Wei San or Liang Ge San

 

Heart Yin Deficiency with Heart Fire

Canker sores which are present only around period.  They are red in color and occur with irritability, insomnia, palpitations and the tip of the tongue is red and painful.  The period will be  scanty and possibly early. 

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Yin - descend Fire

Herbal Medicine Formula: Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan

 

 

PMS - Hives

Pre Menstrual hives are itchy, raised eruptions which occurs cyclically around the period. They may occur only in one area or anywhere over the entire body. 


Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Blood Deficiency

PMS Hives will effect the whole body with extreme itchiness, when scratching hives will appear, the itchiness is worse at night.  The period will be commonly delayed with a light period bleed. There will also be dizziness, pale complexion, dry skin, weak nails, ...

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Blood - expel Wind

Formula- Dang Gui Yin Zi

 

Wind Heat big patches of red elevated hives, when scratched you can see clear red lines on the persons skin, severe itchiness, heat makes it worse, early-heavy menstruation. Plus - Heat sym. (maybe exterior sym.)

Principle of Treatment: - nourish blood - clear Heat - cool blood - expel Wind

Herbal Medicine Formula: Xiao Feng San

 

PMS Dizziness

PMS dizziness or blurred vision which occurs just before the period.  In severe cases dizziness can also be accompanied with a spinning sensation and tinnitus.

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Blood Deficiency

PMS dizziness which occurs during and post period.  The periods are generally light and may be delayed. There is also generalized skin dryness, seeing floaters, weak nails, ...

Principle of Treatment: - nourish HT SP for Qi/Blood

Herbal Medicine Formula: Gui Pi Tang + gou qi zi, he shou wu

 

Liver Yang Rising

Pre menstrual dizziness which occurs before and during the period.  Common symptoms also include tinnitus a light period with bright red blood, red irritated eyes, anger, head aches, thirst, ... 

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Yin - subdue Yang

Herbal Medicine Formula: Tian Ma Gou Teng Yin

 

Phlegm-Damp Accumulation

Dizziness with PMS which occurs before and during the period.  The dizziness is accompanied with a feeling of a heavy head and a "fuzzy" head which clouds ones thinking.  The body will also feel heavy and offten will have a vaginal discharge.  There may be mucus in the stool, sinus congestion or post nasal drip, plugged ears, ...

Principle of Treatment: - strengthen spleen, transform phlegm dampness, stop dizziness

Herbal Medicine Formula: Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang

 

PMS Edema

PMS Edema is water swelling which occurs in regularity with the period.  Once the period is finished, the edema is also gone and only comes back before the next cycle begins.  

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Spleen and Kidney Yang Deficiency 

PMS pitting edema which occurs during and post period.  The edema is more severe in the  morning and on the face.  There is a longer cycle which has scanty dark period blood.  They are generally cold people who always are wanting to be around warmth and to drink warm drinks.  They may have frequent urination, fatigue, bloating, ...

Principle of Treatment: - Warm Spleen and Kidney - induce diuresis

Herbal Medicine Formula: Ling Gui Zhu Gan Tang

 

Qi/Blood Stagnation

Pre menstrual edema occuring more in the abdominal area bloating, fatigue, delayed periods with dark and clotted  period blood  The periods are often painful and have many other PMS signs and symptoms of irritability, low rib area distention, ...

Principle of Treatment - regulate LR Qi - promote blood circ.

Herbal Medicine Formula: Ba Wu Tong + fu ling, zi lan

 

 

PMS and Emotional Disorders

PMS emotional disorders encompasses a very large scope of emotions which is not limited to, depression, weepiness, irritability, anger, resentment, frustration, mania, ...    These emotional changes during PMS are due to changes in the hormone levels at this time.  These can be influenced naturally to help decrease the discomfort of these emotionals and possibly cure them.  

 

Chinese Medicine Differentiation and Treatment

Heart Blood Deficiency

Emotional changes pre menstrually and during the period.   General feelings of anxiety, lack of concentration, poor mental function, sadness,...   There will also be a  delayed period with light pale bleeding.   Other signs of this are insomnia, fatigue, palpitations, ... 

Principle of Treatment: - nourish Blood - calm Shen

Herbal Medicine Formula: Yang Xin Tang + long gu, mu li, Gan Mai Da Zao Tang

 

Liver Qi stagnation with Fire 

PMS irritability, anxiety, angry, possible violent behavior, mania, ...  The period will be  heavy and come early.  They will also experience insomnia, dry red eyes, rib side discomfort, flushed feeling, ...

Principle of Treatment: - clear LR Heat - sooth LR - calm Shen

Herbal Medicine Formula: Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San

 

Phlegm-Fire

violent erradic behavior, irritable and angry emotions before the period.  There will be a large amount of yellow smelly sticky vaginal discharge.  There will also be fullness in the chest, nasal congestion, nausea, heaviness  of the body, ...

Principle of Treatment: - clear Phlegm-Heat to calm Shen

Herbal Medicine Formula: Wen Dan Tang

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