Article by Carrie Anderson
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is a condition different than premenstrual symptoms.
Web MD shares these symptoms of PMDD.
“The symptoms of PMDD usually show up the week before you start your period and last until a few days after it begins. Most of the time they are severe and debilitating, and they can keep you from daily activities.”
Symptoms of PMDD include:
● Mood swings
● Depression or feelings of hopelessness
● Intense anger and conflict with other people
● Tension, anxiety, and irritability
● Decreased interest in usual activities
● Difficulty concentrating
● Change in appetite
● Feeling out of control
● Sleep problems
● Cramps and bloating
● Breast tenderness
● Joint or muscle pain
● Hot flashes
I have firsthand experience with PMDD. I was first diagnosed with it when I went to my physician seeking treatment for what I believed was PMS. He listened to my symptoms and said that it was clear that I was suffering from PMDD. He changed some of my daily medications and instructed me to increase them, per his instructions, the week before I began to menstruate.
For the past 10 years or so, I have been taking the medication as prescribed and increasing the week prior to menses. The issue then arose, that due to irregularity, I wouldn’t always know when to start the medication. If I hadn’t caught it in time then I was already in the throes of a depression so deep that I couldn’t get out of bed. I couldn’t sleep at night because the pain would keep me awake. I would get terrible migraines, feel exhausted and need to constantly lay down. The simplest things would cause me to start crying and I would also often act out in anger. While the new medication regime did help with the symptoms, they did not go away. Mostly, the symptoms and their effects were reduced by about 25%.
When I started practicing Reiki, I decided to focus special treatment on my PMDD.
- First, I begin each evening with a full body scan meditation. This really helps keep me aware of my body and tunes me into changes.
- After the body scan, I then do a full Reiki self-treatment.
- Finally, I focus on my root chakra and set an extra intention of healing. I usually focus on this particular chakra and body region for about 15 minutes.
However, the week before menses I might spend up to 30 minutes practicing self-Reiki to help alleviate the symptoms. I’ve also incorporated a daily mindfulness routine. When I feel an increase in depression or anger, I stop and then do a brief body scan. Becoming aware that these emotions are most likely being triggered by an increase in hormones the daily self-Reiki have greatly helped reduce my overall symptoms. The Reiki, mindfulness, body scan meditations, and the prescription medications, together, have helped me deal the most effectively with PMDD. I no longer dread that time of the month and I know that I will make it through and that just in a few days my world will seem brighter.
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Carrie Anderson has her Bachelor’s in Anthropology with a Minor in Women’s Studies. She is a Reiki Master with additional training in Grief Reiki, NOW Reiki, Crystal Reiki, Reiki Space Clearing, and Animal Reiki. Her focus is on Distance Reiki. She also has certifications in Teen Guided Meditation, Chakra Cleansing, Meditation Guide, Manifestation Practitioner, Energy Healing with Color and Art, Reflexology and Acupressure. Additionally, she is a Yoga Instructor with a focus on Gentle Yoga, Restorative Yoga, Children’s Yoga, and Yoga Nidra. Carrie is a co-author with Mellisa Dormoy for the book, “Easy Mindfulness for Today’s Teens”. She is an active member of the Natural Healer Society and may be reached at email@example.com