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PMS Woes

Question:

PMS seems to be a problem with me. I feel depressed, anxious, and overwhelmed from the time I ovulate until I menstruate. I can not take any birth control as it results in enhancing my symptoms. I do not know what is an available option for me to get these symptoms under control? Any suggestions?

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Answer:

I might sound like a broken record here – especially after answering the previous letter – but although your mood swings may be caused by very different circumstances than those of the woman in the previous letter – the procedures for getting a grip on the mood swings are similar. Discuss your mood swings with your medical doctor or Ob/Gyn. She may be able help. If your symptoms persist, consider seeking out a short term therapy that can help you learn to cope with depression. Look for a cognitive behavioral therapist (usually a Clinical Psychologist) for help with this. There is a strong thinking component to most depressions. While we may be feeling badly in part for biological reasons – we also commonly add to and magnify our depressive and anxious feeling by making common thinking errors. By learning to think differently, we can gain better control over our mood. Good luck, Dr. Dombeck

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