Each women’s cycle is unique. Some women barely notice when their period is going to come. The range of unpleasant symptoms that correspond with monthly cycles is called premenstrual syndrome or PMS.
- Tension or anxiety
- Depressed mood
- Crying spells
- Mood swings and irritability or anger
- Appetite changes and food cravings
- Trouble falling asleep (insomnia)
- Social withdrawal
- Flu-like symptoms
- Poor concentration
- Weight gain
In western medicine, these symptoms are often thought to be a normal part of the menstruation. In Chinese medicine, we believe if all organs are communicating and supporting each other, PMS is absent or minimal. PMS is the result of an underlying imbalance or deficiency.
A healthy period, according to Chinese medicine, is regular – every 28 to 31 days. Menstrual blood should be bright red, not pink, brown or like grape jelly. Flow should be adequate, not flooding clotty, scanty, and does not stop and start. Cramping typically has clots associated with it, which is a sign of non-free flow of blood (we call this blood stagnation). We see many polyps being diagnosed by Reproductive Endocrinologists these days. These are associated with blood stagnation, meaning the uterine wall lining is not adequately sloughed each month. This can greatly impede your chances of getting pregnant.
Acupuncture and herbal therapy give excellent results for PMS. Depending on how long and how severe symptoms are, we often see changes within the first month of treatment.
Research has shown that acupuncture is very effective in treating PMS. In one study, it was found that acupuncture could cure the symptoms of PMS in almost 78% of the women who had participated in that study. Acupuncture can alleviate cramps, nausea, headaches, anxiety, and insomnia.