Who me? Moody?
Homeopathy for PMS
By Susy Goins
One would think that after (muffled sounds) years of being fertile and menstruating, I would have a clue about PMS. Actually, it usually takes an unbiased and heavily armored observer -- namely, my husband -- to point out that I may be just a tad over the top. He usually uses code words like, “Isn’t it time to take a few ‘vitamins,’ dear?” as he lies prostrate at my feet holding a 50-pound block of extra dark chocolate.
Now that I know more about homeopathy, my husband’s code words need to change. We know the standards: cut back on caffeine, alcohol, salty and fatty and junk foods; get plenty of exercise; and eat your fruits and veggies (all which is completely counter to what my body really wants to do, which includes sitting on my butt, watching old movies and stuff my face with chocolate and chips and wine). In addition to these, homeopathy can support you in your monthly quest to remain sane during that particularly insane time of the month.
The 30th potency is great for premenstrual symptoms. If you have a clockwork-like cycle, you can take these remedies twice a day starting the day before your PMS hits, for up to three days. If you’re more like me and any time could be “it,” take the 30th potency as often as you need to when your symptoms are bad. Ease up on the remedy when your symptoms start to change. Stop the remedy when your symptoms are mild or all fear of danger has passed. (That’s a joke, y’know.)
Sepia, the so-called “bitch remedy,” is a remedy developed for a man but proven far more effective for premenstrual syndrome. Apathy, irritability, tearfulness, anger and the feeling that your uterus is about to fall out are symptoms that benefit from Sepia.
Other symptoms could include greasy skin and maybe acne, cravings for salty or sweet foods, a decrease in sex drive, constipation and general internal weakness. If your symptoms improve from eating (and frankly, whose don’t?), after sleeping or vigorous exercise or in heat, then try Sepia.
Calcarea Carbonica comes from oyster shells. Do you have tender, swollen breasts? Are you retaining water? What about painful joints, lack of energy, depression, indifference, possible yeast infection? Do you feel better in the morning or when slightly constipated? Are you worse in drafts, in cold, damp and wind, after overexertion, or between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m.?
When cramps are your most aggravating symptom, consider:
Pulsatilla for weepy, clingy moods and flow changes from month to month, without thirst. You’ll be occasionally nauseous, prefer open air and feel worse when exposed to heat (which aggravates water retention and bloating).
Belladonna for intense, bearing-down pain (like labor), cramps that come and go suddenly, and pain made worse by motion or jarring of any type or drafts. Belladonna cramps may sometimes bring along a headache.
Magnesia phosphorica is my cramps remedy. These cramps are alleviated by bending over, firm abdominal massage, warmth and warm applications. Anything cold or uncovered is out of the question.
Colocynthis’ symptom picture is just like Magnesia phosphorica’s, except you’ll be way more cranky and restless.
Do you bloat?
Check out the Pulsatilla and Sepia profiles. Also consider Lycopodium for bloating that is worse between 4 and 8 p.m. and in warm weather. You’ll also experience gas/flatulence and backache. Lachesis, homeopathic bushmaster snake venom, will help for bloating that is aggravated during sleep, when you wake up and after exposure to heat. Your symptoms are also worse on the left side and are relieved by starting your period. More Lachesis symptoms are excessive talking, sharp-tonguedness (think snake), sarcasm, suspiciousness and jealousy.
Moody? Did you say moody? Irritable? I refer you again to Sepia, Pulsatilla and Lachesis. Other choices are Ignatia, the “martyr” remedy; Nux vomica, the “type-A personality” remedy; and Cimicifuga, the “I can’t take it anymore” remedy.
My husband has been put on official notice: His code words must include Cimicifuga or Sepia. Add that to the chocolate!
© Susy Goins
An informal student of natural health for years, NFO Bookshelf and Natural Beauty Editor Susy Goins received her certificate in homeopathy from the American College of Health Sciences. The self-proclaimed out-of-the-mainstream mama of three is a writer, belly dancer, actress, costumer and cook and will soon be celebrating 20 years of marriage to her husband.