Monday, August 18, 2008

Premenstrual syndrome and What are the Herbal Remedies for PMS?

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) involves symptoms that occur in relation to the menstrual cycle and which interfere with the woman's life. The symptoms usually begin 5 to 11 days before the start of menstruation. Symptoms usually stop when menstruation begins, or shortly thereafter.
As many as 75 percent of women, during their reproductive years, experience some of the common symptoms associated with PMS. In general, women most likely to experience PMS symptoms are between the ages of 20 and 40 -- and particularly women from this age group who have one child and have a history of depression in their family.

An exact cause of PMS has not been identified. However, it may be related to social, cultural, biological, and psychological factors. PMS can occur with apparently normal ovarian function (regular ovulatory cycles).
PMS remains an enigma because of the wide-ranging symptoms and the difficulty in making a firm diagnosis. Several theories have been advanced to explain the cause of PMS. None of these theories has been proven. Among the reigning theories are those relating to alterations in the levels of sex hormones, brain chemicals, and opioid peptides:
Sex hormones: PMS has been thought (since the 1930's) to be due to decreased production of sex hormones by the ovaries after ovulation has taken place (in midcycle, or days 7-10 into the menstrual cycle). To date, this theory is still unproven.
Neurotransmitters: Alterations in sex hormone levels at around the time of ovulation have also been thought to cause PMS. The changes in sex hormone levels affect certain brain chemicals which, in turn, bring about the mood changes of PMS. Serotonin and tryptophan, which function as neurotransmitters in the brain, have been shown to create PMS-like symptoms experimentally. These two chemicals have profound effects on mood and emotion.
Opioid peptides: These are substances possessing some properties of opiate narcotics but not derived from opium. They are also brain chemicals known to affect mood. The concentration of these compounds in the brain tissue can fluctuate in response to the hormones produced by the ovaries. Because of genetic differences, some women can be more susceptible to these chemical changes in the brain and suffer more severe symptoms.
It is believed that lifestyle may play a significant role in PMS. This is because PMS symptoms appear to be most troubling in women who smoke, lead stressful lives, rarely exercise, sleep too little or whose diet is high in caffeine, alcohol, salt, red meat or sugary foods such as chocolate or candy. However, it's not clear whether these factors increase your risk of PMS or if PMS accounts for these differences in lifestyle. For example, studies looking at the influence of stress do not find a relationship between stress and the severity of PMS. It is more likely that PMS causes stress rather than that stress causes PMS.

Premenstrual dysphoric disorder
Premenstrual tension syndrome

SYMPTOMS PMS often includes both physical and emotional symptoms. Common symptoms are:
Breast swelling and tenderness
Fatigue and trouble sleeping
Upset stomach, bloating, constipation or diarrhea
Appetite changes or food cravings
Joint or muscle pain
Tension, irritability, mood swings, or crying spells
Anxiety or depression
Trouble concentrating or remembering

Herbs of choice Herbs are often used in combinations when combating an illness. Some of the most frequently used herbs are listed below. These nine herbs were picked up from different herbal combinations and are not meant to form a recipe. Our reference code for the different combinations of herbs used for this condition is GPS. This listing is not meant to diagnose, only to inform. This is of course not a complete list and is not meant to be used in the place of a doctor's advice. Click the image of each herb for a brief introduction in terms of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
What are the Herbal Remedies for PMS?
Traditionally, Vitex (Chaste tree, Monk?s pepper) has been used for controlling Menstrual Disorders. The part used is the vitex stem. Vitex stem acts upon the pituitary gland?specifically on the production of a hormone called luteinizing hormone (LH), which indirectly increases progesterone production and helps regulate the menstrual cycle. Vitex is taken orally in form of capsules or liquid, depending on the available product.
Tea made up of Yarrow plant is also traditionally considered very beneficial. It has anti-inflamatory properties and helps in menstrual disorders. Tea can be prepared by boiling yarrow leaves in water for 10-15 minutes. It can be taken 2-3 times in a day to get relief.
Dashamoola is an ayurvedic composition of ten roots for treatment menstrual disorders.It has an anti-inflammatory effect and is considered vey effective in bronchitis, cough, headache, weakness, drowsiness and digestive problems. It is available in different forms - tablets or liquid(wine made from these herbs).
Cinnamom is traditionally recommended to get relief from menstrual cramps. A teaspoon of cinnamon can be taken with a glass of warm milk.

Thank natural to make herbals for good life!