Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) occurs just prior to menstruation and is characterized by significant:
PMDD is much more severe and less common than
The exact cause is not known.
Factors that may increase the risk of PMDD include:
- Having hormonal changes
- Having a family history of PMDD
- Experiencing a lot of stress or a traumatic life event
or another mental health condition
|Microscopic View of Hormone Receptor
|Menstruation causes many hormonal changes, which may play a role in PMDD.
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
- Extreme sadness
- Frequent crying
- Unusually strong cravings for certain foods
- Difficulty concentrating or paying attention
- Panic attacks
- Mood swings
- Fatigue or lack of energy
- Physical symptoms (eg, sore breasts, headaches, joint or muscle pain, swelling, bloating)
Symptoms typically begin 10-14 days prior to the start of menstruation.
Your doctor will diagnose PMDD based on your symptoms. You may be asked to keep a record of when your symptoms occur and how severe they are.
Your doctor may also order:
- Blood tests
- Tests to check hormone levels
Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. Treatment options include:
These steps can help manage symptoms of PMDD:
- Exercise throughout the week.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine.
- Learn stress management techniques.
- Improve your sleep habits.
Your doctor may recommend:
(selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors [SSRIs])
- Oral contraceptives
- Nutritional supplements
To reduce your chance of PMDD, take these steps:
- Get plenty of exercise and rest.
- Eat a well-balanced diet.
- Manage stress.
American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada
PMS and PMDD. Mass General Hospital Center for Women's Health website. Available at:
. Accessed August 14, 2012.
Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). Family Doctor.org website.
. Updated August 2010. Accessed August 14, 2012.
Premenstrual syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at:
. Updated June 14, 2012. Accessed August 14, 2012.