Pre-Menstrual Syndrome) or Problems of No Periods - Herbal Treatment

Herbs and Pre-Menstrual Syndrome, Heavy Periods and No Periods

 

PMS, Heavy Periods and No Periods

Information on PMS, Heavy Periods and Amenorrhoea
Natural Herbal Remedies

The Problems of PMS (Pre-Menstrual Syndrome, also known as PMT - Pre-Menstrual Tension), Heavy Periods (Monorrhagia) and Problems of No Periods (Amenorrhoea)

Premenstrual Syndrome: PMS is a disorder characterized by a set of hormonal changes that trigger disruptive symptoms in a significant number of women for up to two weeks prior to menstruation. Of the estimated 40 million suffers, more than 5 million require medical treatment for marked mood and behavioral changes. Often symptoms tend to taper off with menstruation and women remain symptom-free until the two weeks or so prior to the next menstrual period. These regularly recurring symptoms from ovulation until menses typify PMS, premenstrual syndrome.

Characteristics
Over 150 symptoms have been attributed to PMS. After complaints of feeling "out-of-control", anxious, depressed and having uncontrollable crying spells, the most common complaints are headache and fatigue. But symptoms may vary from month to month and there may even be symptom-free months. No women present with all the PMS symptoms. Characteristically symptoms may be both physical and emotional. They may include physical symptoms as headache, migraine, fluid retention, fatigue, constipation, painful joints, backache, abdominal cramping, heart palpitations and weight gain. Emotional and behavioral changes may include anxiety, depression, irritability, panic attacks, tension,lack of co-ordination, decreased work or social performance and altered libido.

Originally described in 1931 by an American neurologist, the grouping of symptoms has remained the same:

Aside from the regularity of symptoms seen prior to menstruation, there are certain elements which distinguish PMS from other disorders:

*PMS may often be triggered by hormonal changes. It tends to begin at puberty, after pregnancy, after starting birth control pills, after hormone related surgery as hysterectomy or tubal ligation or around the onset of the menopause. In fact, it is not unusual for the PMS sufferer to confuse her symptoms with those of an early menopause.

*Lifting of symptoms (including headache) with pregnancy, especially in the second and third trimester.

*Heredity appears to be a factor although specific symptoms may differ between sisters or mother and daughters.

*There is often an aura of increased activity prior to the worse symptoms of PMS or migraines. At this time, the woman may clean the house, function with little sleep, and feel euphoric. This is followed by the PMS symptoms, migraine, fatigue, exhaustion, depression and the inability to function. Women typically feel “out of control” at this time and this can cause the signs and symptoms of depression.

Causes of PMS
The exact cause of PMS, headaches and depression are unknown. In fact, it is not known why some women have severe symptoms, some have mild ones, while others have none. It is generally believed that PMS, migraine and depression stem from neurochemical changes within the brain. Hormonal factors, such as estrogen levels, had not been appreciated until recent studies.

The female hormone estrogen starts to rise after menstruation and peaks around mid-cycle (ovulation). It then rapidly drops only to slowly rise and then fall again in the time before menstruation. Estrogen hold fluid and with increasing estrogen comes fluid retention: many women report weight gains of five pounds premenstrually. Estrogen has a central neurologic effect: it can contribute to increase brain activity and even seizures. Estrogen can also contribute to retention of salt and a drop in blood sugar. PMS patients and migraineurs benefit from both salt and sugar restriction and a mild diuretic.

PMS and Postpartum Depression
A special form of PMS is the severe depression experienced after delivery. Most women experience a “let down” from the high hormone levels during pregnancy. Because of this, there is a normal amount of feeling “blue” immediately after childbirth. But the depth of depression experienced with postpartum depression is much deeper. These individuals cannot tolerate the hormonal disruption to their nervous system: their actions may harm themselves or their infants. That is why the treatment of PMS in the postpartum period is first to replace the missing hormones. If unsuccessful, then other hormonal preparations can be included as well.

PMS and Migraine Diet
Depending on the patient’s individual symptoms and their severity, the doctor may recommend how one may take an active role in the management of PMS and premenstrual migraine by following these guidelines:

*Eat six small meals at regular three-hour intervals, high in complex carbohydrates and low in simple sugars. This helps to maintain a stead blood glucose level and avoid energy highs and lows.

*Substantially reduce and eliminate use of caffeine, alcohol, salt, fats, and simple sugars to reduce bloating, fatigue, tension and depression.

*Daily supplemental vitamins and minerals may be administered to relieve some PMS symptoms. A multivitamin with B6(100 mcg), B complex, magnesium (300mg), Vitamin E (400 IU) and vitamin C (1000 mg) may be recommended to alleviate irritability, fluid retention, joint aches, breast tenderness, anxiety, depression and fatigue. Be sure to check with your doctor before taking any medication for PMS.

*Exercise is helpful for PMS because it reduces stress and tension, acts as a mood elevator, provides a sense of well-being and improves blood circulation by increasing natural production of beta-endorphins. It is recommended, if your physician so advises, to exercise at least three times weekly for 20-30 minutes. Aerobics, walking, jogging, bicycling and swimming are a few of the suggested ways to exercise.

This tonic has specific herbs to improve the systems of PMS or PMT
Don't suffer any longer with the pains and distress of period symptoms.
Herbal medicine uses natural herbal hormonal herbs to relieve the physical and psychological suffering of monthly menstruation.

Menorrhagia - Heavy Periods
Periods with abnormally heavy bleeding; more than the average flow and lasting longer.
Causes
There are some common causes: iron deficiency, shock, thyroid gland irregularity, ovarian insufficiency, prolapse, polys, fibroids, hormone imbalce, use of the intra uterine device (IUD).
Symptoms
Hands and feet get cold, face is pallid, hot and cold, poor appetite, neervousness, poor energy, pain in back and loins.
Treatment
There are specific herbs to help with this conditionthat can be effective very quickly. These include Beth root, American Cranesbil, Shepherd's Purse, Agnes Castus. We will combine them for an unique herbal medicine for you.

No Periods - Amenorrhoea
This is the lack of periods during menstruation age. It can also mean very light and very short periods. Make sure you are not pregnant when no flow occurs during the time when you usually have a period. it can occur during severe stress, emotional upheaval, intercontinental travelling (common among air hostesses). Also can be due to polyps, fibroids, severe weight loss programmes, fasting.
Symptoms
Scanty, irregular or absent periods.
Can be distressing. Can increase emotional stress. Reduces fertility.
Treatment
There are herbs that can help to restore the normal menstrual cycle. Before treatment there must be clear evidence that you are not pregnant. Herbal treatment will also involve improving stress levels, sleep, digestion, hormonal balance, circulation, blood pressure.

 

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PMS Tonic (premenstrual syndrome)

 

 


Prescriptions

Our herbal tonic medicines are carefully prepared on a personal and individual basis for your healing by medical herbalist Alan Hopking MA MNIMH FINEH.

Only whole herbs are used in our herbal medicines. Nothing else is added. If you have symptoms which you consider might be helped with herbal medicine please contact herbal practitioner Alan Hopking for a friendly confidential professional consultation. See terms and fees.

Once you have received your herbal prescription you can contact Alan Hopking at any time for more free advice (preferably by email). When you have completed your bottle of herbal medicine and if you want a repeat prescription you are requested to phone or email so that your progress can be assessed and adjustments made if necessary so that there is no break in your treatment. To order or re-order, click here.

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HERBACTIVE Centre of Herbal Medicine, England, UK. Freephone 0800 0834436

General advice to consumers on the use of herbal remedies from the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency

From the website of the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (www.mhra.gov.uk) Department of Health, UK

• Remember that herbal remedies are medicines. As with any other medicine they are likely to have an effect on the body and should be used with care. • Herbal remedies may sometimes interact with other medicines. This makes it particularly important to tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking a herbal remedy with other medicines such as prescribed medicines (those provided through your doctor or dentist). • Treat with caution any suggestion that a herbal remedy is '100% safe' or is 'safe because it is natural'. Many plants, trees, fungi and algae can be poisonous to humans. It is worth remembering that many pharmaceuticals have been developed or derived from these sources because of the powerful compounds they contain. Any medicine, including herbal remedies, which have an effect on the body should be used with care. • Treat with caution any herbalist or other person who supplies herbal remedies if they are unwilling or unable to provide written information, in English, listing the ingredients of the herbal remedy they are providing. • If you are due to have a surgical operation you should always remember to tell your doctor about any herbal remedy that you are taking. • Anyone who has previously experienced any liver complaint, or any other serious health complaint is advised not to take any herbal remedy without speaking to their doctor first.

PRECAUTIONS:

Pregnant/Breast-feeding mothers

Few conventional medicines have been established as safe to take during pregnancy and it is generally recognised that no medicine should be taken unless the benefit to the mother outweighs any possible risk to the foetus. This rule should also be applied to herbal medicinal products. However, herbal products are often promoted to the public as being “natural” and completely “safe” alternatives to conventional medicines. Some herbal ingredients that specifically should be avoided or used with caution during pregnancy. As with conventional medicines, no herbal products should be taken during pregnancy unless the benefit outweighs the potential risk.

Volatile Oils

Many herbs are traditionally reputed to be abortifacient and for some this reputation can be attributed to their volatile oil component.(6) A number of volatile oils are irritant to the genito-urinary tract if ingested and may induce uterine contractions. Herbs that contain irritant volatile oils include ground ivy, juniper, parsley, pennyroyal, sage, tansy and yarrow. Some of these oils contain the terpenoid constituent, thujone, which is known to be abortifacient. Pennyroyal oil also contains the hepatotoxic terpenoid constituent, pulegone. A case of liver failure in a woman who ingested pennyroyal oil as an abortifacient has been documented.

Uteroactivity

A stimulant or spasmolytic action on uterine muscle has been documented for some herbal ingredients including blue cohosh, burdock, fenugreek, golden seal, hawthorn, jamaica dogwood, motherwort, nettle, raspberry, and vervain. Herbal Teas Increased awareness of the harmful effects associated with excessive tea and coffee consumption has prompted many individuals to switch to herbal teas. Whilst some herbal teas may offer pleasant alternatives to tea and coffee, some contain pharmacologically active herbal ingredients, which may have unpredictable effects depending on the quantity of tea consumed and strength of the brew. Some herbal teas contain laxative herbal ingredients such as senna, frangula, and cascara. In general stimulant laxative preparations are not recommended during pregnancy and the use of unstandardised laxative preparations is particularly unsuitable. A case of hepatotoxicity in a newborn baby has been documented in which the mother consumed a herbal tea during pregnancy as an expectorant. Following analysis the herbal tea was reported to contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids which are known to be hepatotoxic.

Breast-feeding mothers

A drug substance taken by a breast-feeding mother presents a hazard if it is transferred to the breast milk in pharmacologically or toxicologically significant amounts. Limited information is available regarding the safety of conventional medicines taken during breast-feeding. Much less information exists for herbal ingredients, and generally the use of herbal remedies is not recommended during lactation.

Paediatric Use

Herbal remedies have traditionally been used to treat both adults and children. Herbal remedies may offer a milder alternative to some conventional medicines, although the suitability of a herbal remedy needs to be considered with respect to quality, safety and efficacy. Herbal remedies should be used with caution in children and medical advice should be sought if in doubt. Chamomile is a popular remedy used to treat teething pains in babies. However, chamomile is known to contain allergenic sesquiterpene lactones and should therefore be used with caution. The administration of herbal teas to children needs to be considered carefully and professional advice may be needed.

Perioperative use

The need for patients to discontinue herbal medicinal products prior to surgery has recently been proposed. The authors considered eight commonly used herbal medicinal products (echinacea, ephedra, garlic, ginkgo, ginseng, kava, St John’s Wort, valerian). On the evidence available they concluded that the potential existed for direct pharmacological effects, pharmacodynamic interactions and pharmacokinetic interactions. The need for physicians to have a clear understanding of the herbal medicinal products being used by patients and to take a detailed history was highlighted. The American Society of Anaesthesiologists (ASA) has advised patients to tell their doctor if they are taking herbal products before surgery and has reported that a number of anaesthesiologists have reported significant changes in heart rate or blood pressure in some patients who have been taking herbal medicinal products including St John’s Wort, ginkgo and ginseng. MCA is currently investigating a serious adverse reaction associated with the use of ginkgo prior to surgery. In this case, the patient who was undergoing hip replacement experienced uncontrolled bleeding thought to be related to the use of ginkgo.

From the website of the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (www.mhra.gov.uk) Department of Health, UK

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