Stress management can help women cope with premenstrual symptoms

October 20th, 2009 - 1:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Oct 20 (IANS) Understanding premenstrual symptoms (PMS) can help women cope better with the condition, mitigating bad moods and stress, according to researchers.
Jane Ussher, professor of psychology and Janette Perz, both from the University of Western Sydney (UWS), have conducted a study on the effectiveness of stress management for PMS.

The findings reveal that both one-to-one and self-help therapies can improve women’s overall experience of PMS, as well as ameliorate PMS symptoms.

“PMS is a major health problem which causes significant psychological changes such as stress, depression, and an inability to function socially,” says Ussher.

“By understanding how their bodies work, as well as the patterns of their thoughts and feelings, women can learn to cope better with PMS - which can, in turn, lead to a reduction in their psychological symptoms.”

As part of the UWS study, women between the ages of 20 and 45 were issued with PMS self-help information packages or recruited to participate in specialist three-month psychological treatment programs.

The self-help packs and treatment sessions gave each participant the opportunity to explore the psychological symptoms of PMS, as well as learn effective problem-solving, relaxation and stress management techniques.

The outcomes of the study indicate that psychological treatments can have a gradual and lasting impact on PMS, said Ussher.

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