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Ayurvedic treatment for Premenstrual Syndrome

Dr. K.Y. Iyer

The best treatment for premenstrual syndrome in women is to get the whole body back to total health while treating the worst of symptoms. A good diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables should be taken. All stimulants including tea, salt, sugar and chocolate should be avoided.

What does the term premenstrual syndrome apply?

Women who have premenstrual syndrome (PMS) experience a variety of physical and emotional symptoms that occur each month from 2 to 14 days before their menstrual cycle. The symptoms usually disappear once the cycle begins.

When does premenstrual syndrome start?

PMS may begin at any age and ends after menopause. Approximately 75 percent of women experience PMS to some degree, with 20 to 50 percent finding that symptoms disrupt their daily activities, and 3 to 5 percent becoming incapacitated.

What are the causes of premenstrual syndrome?

  • Mithya achar
    • bnormal diet: unhygienic, non nutritious, unbalanced diet
    • Abnormal mode of life: coitus in abnormal body postures and use of foreign bodies causing local infection, ulceration etc.
  • Pradust-artava – imbalanced ovarian hormones
  • Bija doshas – abnormalities in sperm and ovum causing innumerable genetic and chromosomal defects.
  • Dev – idiopathic causes usually psychological.

Causes in correlation with modern sciences:
So while the exact cause of PMS is unknown, the most popular theories include hormonal changes (oestrogen excess or progesterone deficiency), hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), vitamin B6 deficiency, abnormal metabolism of prostaglandin (hormone-like substances), excessive fluid retention within the body, and endorphin withdrawal (a substance in the brain that provides pain relief).

What is the pathophysiology of premenstrual syndrome?

Pre menstrual syndrome is controlled by Vat dosha.
Vata is broadly classified in to 5 types:
  • Pran vata: Pran vata is centered in brain and takes car of the nervous and respiratory systems. It moves downwards and governs swallowing of food.
  • Vyan vata: Vyan vata is centered in heart and governs the circulatory system. It travels all through the body along with the blood and takes care of the muscle and joint movements.
  • Udan vata: This is centered in throat and governs speech.
  • Sman vata: This governs digestion of meal.
  • Apan vata: This is centered in the lower abdomen and governs all downward discharges such as faeces, urine, semen, menstrual fluid and foetus.

Often the physical and mental work is so hectic that Pran vata (that residing in brain) calls Apan vata (which takes care of menstruation) for its help. In this condition instead of flowing downwards, which is the actual direction of Apan vata, it tends to flow upwards to help Pran vata. Movement of Apan vata in opposite direction cause back pain, bloating, flatulence, indigestion etc.

At the time of menstruation when Apan vata is supposed to support the uterus in its work, it being dislodged from its site, finds itself helpless and has to take help of Pran vata instead. When Pran vata leaves its center there follows emotional disturbances, anxiety, depression and acne.

Therefore premenstrual syndrome is as a whole due to unorganized activity of Apan vata.

What are the types of premenstrual syndrome?

Broadly premenstrual syndrome is divided into three types:

Vataja: Showing following sign and symptoms:

  • Nervous tension
  • Mood swings
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle cramps
  • Constipation
  • Indigestion

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