PMS Specialist

Capital Women's Care

OB-GYNs located in Arlington, VA & McLean, VA

PMS can cause some uncomfortable symptoms including bloating, mood swings, depression, breast tenderness, and skin breakouts. With problems like these, there's no doubt that women suffering from this problem want effective treatments that work quickly. The OB/GYNs at Capital Women's Care in Arlington and McLean, Virginia are here to help their patients get the treatment they need, whether it's recommendations for over-the-counter remedies, prescription medications, or other treatments.

PMS Q&A

What is PMS?

Pre-menstrual syndrome, commonly called PMS, is a condition that impacts women in the days just before their period. While most women have menstrual and pre-menstrual symptoms at some point in their lives, PMS isn't diagnosed until a specific set of circumstances occur.

PMS is chronic, occurring every month for a minimum of three contiguous menstrual cycles. Additionally, to diagnose PMS, the symptoms must occur for around five days before the period but end by the four-day mark post-period.

Finally, your Capital Women's Care doctor typically diagnoses PMS when the symptoms are severe enough to interfere with your usual routine and lifestyle.

What are the symptoms of PMS?

PMS can have both physical and emotional symptoms. The symptoms of PMS can vary widely from one woman to the next and can include some or all of the following.

  • Excessive thirst
  • Tender or painful breasts
  • Excessive appetite
  • Craving for certain foods
  • Bloating
  • Temporary weight gain
  • Acne
  • Exhaustion
  • Pelvic cramps
  • Stomach pain
  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Higher than usual anxiety levels
  • Disorientation
  • Inability to focus
  • Lower libido

What is the treatment for PMS?

Your Capital Women's Care OB/GYN treats PMS on a personalized basis according to your specific symptoms and needs. If your PMS symptoms aren't severe, you might benefit from simple changes in your lifestyle as recommended by your OB/GYN.

For example, regular aerobic exercise combined with over-the-counter pain relievers where needed may help alleviate many PMS symptoms.

In cases of severe PMS symptoms, your Capital Women's Care OB/GYN may recommend medication therapy. Drugs can include:

Ovulation inhibitors

These drugs, which include contraceptives, are often quite effective in reducing physical PMS symptoms. However, patients with emotional PMS symptoms may also need another type of medication for full relief.

Antidepressants

Antidepressants can be particularly useful for emotional PMS symptoms. Antidepressants are typically taken daily.

NSAIDs

NSAID drugs relieve symptoms like cramps. They're available in both prescription and non-prescription strengths. Your Capital Women's Care OB/GYN can work with you to determine which NSAIDs are best for you.

Diuretics

If bloating is a primary PMS symptom, diuretics can help you eliminate that extra water. Diuretics aren't needed daily; they're usually used only in the days before your period.

Need PMS help? Make an appointment anytime via Capital Women’s Care’s online tool or call the office for help now.