Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Premenstrual dysphoric disorder

There's PMS and then there's PMDD (Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder)...

and according to the symptoms listed, I think I have it.

For the last few years, my cycle has been wacky. I keep asking my gyno about it. But was told it was only PMS and my symptoms were normal in aging women. Even my mom would say, "Could be that you're going to get the 'change' soon."

The change? like Menopause... So I read up on it and didn't see one symptom of menopause that fit me.

So I've quietly sat in the corner, dealing with this.

According to the site, here are the symptoms. I X-ed the ones I suffer from.

X 1-Very depressed mood, feeling hopeless
X 2-Marked anxiety, tension, edginess
X 3-Sudden mood shifts (crying easily, extreme sensitivity)
X 4-Persistent, marked irritability, anger, increased conflicts
X 5-Loss of interest in usual activities work, school, socializing
6-Difficulty concentrating and staying focused
X 7-Fatigue, tiredness, loss of energy
8-Marked appetite change, overeating, food cravings
X 9-Insomnia (difficulty sleeping) or sleeping too much
X 10-Feeling out of control or overwhelmed
X 11-Physical symptoms such as weight gain, bloating, breast tenderness or swelling, headache, and muscle or joint aches and pains

These symtoms start 2 weeks befor my period and end the 3rd day of it. I'm talking suddenly everything's rosy again... my period is very heavy for the first 2 days and then it's light as air.

According to the site:

There is more to making the diagnosis of PMDD than just the symptoms. For example, the symptoms must be linked to the menstrual cycle -- appear in the premenstrual phase, improve or disappear when menses begins or shortly thereafter and be absent in the week following menses. Also, if the symptoms are relatively mild the diagnosis is not made. The premenstrual symptoms have to be severe enough to interfere markedly with relationships, work, school, or social activities.

Now I'm not sufferring enough for these symtpoms to interfere with work, but they do interfere with my relationship with Al. He told me last month during the two-week before my period that he thought I suffered from 'hormones,' which pissed me off. But now I think he's right.

Here's an approach to treatment, if I'm diagnosed

Here are the 3 approaches with some examples of each:

1-Medications - including antidepressants, antianxiety drugs, analgesics, hormones and diuretics.
2-Psychobehavioral - including exercise and psychotherapies (cognitive-behavioral, coping skills training, relaxation).
3-Nutritional - including diet modification, vitamins, minerals and herbal preparations.

Number 1 is out. I'm not loading up on zombie drugs.

My next visit to the gyno is in Nov and I am printing out the info on this site and taking it to her. Maybe between us, we can find a workable solution.


tooners said...

i'm thinking that i suffer w/ this too. i have all the symptoms you marked w/ 'x'. i think a lot of drs. dismiss us women, especially the male gynos. do you see a male or female? i used to see a male and after he did surgery on me and said that i had all this scar tissue inside of me but didn't identify it, that made me switch. it was then that i found out that i had endometriosis... i've not gone to another male since then.

Painter Lady said...

My Dad is the worse. He blames everything on 'my monthly.'

Now that I'm conscious of what ails me, I work at trying to control the mood swings. So far, I'm successful and Al's been really great about being understanding.

Yes, my gyno is a lady. My other doctor moved a few years ago and referred me to her.

How are things with you?