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Pre Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder

Community Member
Hi just wondering if there is anyone else here that's heard of Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder I am pretty sure this is what I have so every time I ovulate and then the week leading up to that time is when my anxiety kicks in the ovulation time is the worst I really cannot rationalise my thoughts. I have started an over the counter behind the counter medication (I don't need a script for it) it's the strongest I can have is a all natural and takes six weeks at least to kick in, I have nearly done week 2. My doc says he wants to see me go through 2 to 3 cycles before referring me to a specialist I'm hoping this works and would love to hear from anyone else with this same problem. I'm sick of thinking I've got an incurable torturing terminal illness!!!
5 Replies 5

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Leets 🙂

Now I have not being diagnosed with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) I have done some reading on it. Yes it is a real condition. There have been studies on it and there are credible journal articles written on them. Now I can't remember all that is written on it, but yes it is real and it can cause irrational thoughts. I have been told by a gynaecologist when I was 16 that I had severe PMS at the time and I know how hard the struggle is. I have talked to my psychiatrist about it recently because I seem to get more depressed and irritable around the time on my cycle. I feel the pain and frustration. I tried the contraception pill recently but had to stop taking it due to extreme nausea. There are some other types of pill that may be better for PMS but I refuse to take them as they have a slightly higher risk of stroke and as I have suffered from Bell's Palsy before I am unwilling to take the risk. As we can not discuss medications on here (as none of us are health professionals and should not dive into this area) I am unsure what you are talking about, but if that is what he has recommended I suggest following it. He would know your position and believes (like me not taking certain contraception pills) more than any of us. If that doesn't work than you could maybe get a referral on to a gynecologist or another specialist in this area.

I know how horrible it is to have PMS. I suggest you download a period tracking app. I use the app called 'Clue' as it isn't called something like periods. It is really good. This can help you know where you are on your cycle and it can help you know which time in your cycle you are at your worse emotionally. You can even make notes in the app. This may help your give your doctor more insight and help him guide your treatment.

Hope some of this helps and makes you feel less alone.

Community Member
Thanks Ms Purple I do have a period tracking app and I tried going back on the pill It it gave me constant headaches I'm hoping these tablets kick in I'm actually doing ok I'm trying to remain positive and believe I will get through all this and that there is a way to manage but it's the constant reassuring to myself that I am ok that is tiring. My GP is great he likes that I check in with him and while I haven't been diagnosed with the PMDD I am truly hoping it's just severe PMS. That's why he wants to wait the few cycles before suggesting a specialist or other medication. Again thank you for your reply I love this site it's the best thing for the support:-)

Community Member

Hi leers, I know it has been some time since this post. But I was wondering how you went? Did the over/behind the counter medication work for you. Was it severe PMS or PMDD. Also had you always had the anxiety feeling before your period since the start of your period or something that started at a later age?

Community Member

Hi Leets,

I am pretty sure I have PMDD but when I have mentioned this idea to my GP on two occasions he brushed it off both times. I have a history of depression and anxiety but I am able to manage them for the most part, but when it comes to the last week of my cycle I am a mess of feelings. I get depressed, irritable, jealous, feel worthless and angry, just to name a few. As soon I start menstruating the extreme feeling leaves me. Even though I know each month these feelings are going to take hold of my brain for a week or so and I think I am going to be able to be aware of them and I can get through it, I can't. The feelings are too strong and overwhelming. I need to see a different GP, I know. With work and kids and the nature of it only coming on for a week each month, I never put time aside to do anything about it. I guess I am also apprehensive that the next GP might not believe me either.

Hi BeeMac83,

I am really sorry to hear that your GP has brushed this off on two occasions and acknowledge you for coming here to the beyondblue forums to seek some support. It sounds to me like you have a great deal of insight into what you are experiencing and just need some support to manage your symptoms so you can get through this monthly week of intensity. This would be incredibly disruptive having to anticipate this each month and I certainly think that with a supportive GP or a referral to a psychologist you will be able to find more balance.

You have already articulated a good first step and that is finding a different GP. Prioritising your own self care and wellbeing can be difficult especially when other aspects of life get in front of you such as kids and work. However, take a moment to imagine how great you would be functioning if you had another week per month where you felt capable and had good energy. You would have so much more time to give to yourself and family and even work. Sometimes making a commitment to yourself needs to be written and made into a goal or better yet, a 'SMART' goal. A SMART goal is more specific than just a goal. SMART stands for the following:

S- Specific M- Measurable A-Attainable R-Resalistic T-Timely

You have set a goal for yourself of 'finding a new GP". A SMART goal example might be:

I will phone around on my lunch break and find a new GP (perhaps at a Woman's Health Centre) within 2 weeks time (but not during my tough week) and make an appointment to discuss my symptoms and find a plan so I can better manage my PMDD.

Having a specific goal and timeframe set will help you get on track more efficiently. As you have already seen a GP twice, I know that you are motivated towards keeping your health in check. These are all really good signs. I might also suggest that you keep a record of your symptoms or a mood diary prior to your appointment so you can go through it with you new GP. This can be as simple as using a calendar for a month and writing down your symptoms (if any) on each square.

Another strategy in the interim would be to use this forum as an outlet or even contact the beyondblue support line to have a chat. This can really make a difference even if it is a short term strategy until you see that great new GP I have confidence you will find.

Wishing you the best possible outcome,

Nurse Jenn