PMDD is a more severe form of PMS that affects women before their menstrual cycle. It causes mood swings, depression, and physical symptoms. The exact cause is unknown, but hormonal changes play a role. Proper diagnosis is important to rule out other conditions. Treatment may involve lifestyle changes, hormonal therapy, or medications. Exercise, stress reduction, and a balanced diet can help manage symptoms. With the right approach, PMDD can be effectively managed.

Best medications for PMDD

Drug NameClassRouteStandard DosagePrice
ZoloftSSRIsOral25, 20, 50, 100 MGfrom$9.00
YAZEstrogen / Progestin CombinationsOral3-0.02 MGfrom$12.10
Paxil CRSSRIsOral25, 37.5, 12.5 MGfrom$8.24
BeyazEstrogen / Progestin / Folate CombinationsOral3-0.02-0.451 MGfrom$44.91


Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) is a condition that affects some women during their menstrual cycle. It is characterized by a variety of physical and emotional symptoms that typically occur in the week or two before menstruation and subside shortly after the start of the menstrual flow. PMDD is more severe than the commonly experienced premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and can significantly impact a woman's quality of life.


The symptoms of PMDD can vary from woman to woman, but commonly include mood swings, irritability, anxiety, depression, and feelings of hopelessness. Physical symptoms such as bloating, breast tenderness, fatigue, and changes in appetite may also be present. These symptoms can be severe enough to interfere with daily activities and relationships.


The exact cause of PMDD is unknown, but hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle are believed to play a significant role. Fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone levels can impact brain chemicals, such as serotonin, leading to mood disturbances. Other factors, such as genetics, environmental influences, and past trauma, may also contribute to the development of PMDD.


To diagnose PMDD, a healthcare provider will typically review the symptoms and their timing in relation to the menstrual cycle. The symptoms must be present for at least two consecutive menstrual cycles and significantly interfere with daily functioning. Keeping a symptom diary can help track patterns and aid in diagnosis. It is important to rule out other conditions that may mimic PMDD symptoms, such as depression, anxiety disorders, or thyroid disorders.


Treatment for PMDD aims to alleviate symptoms and improve a woman's overall well-being. Non-pharmacological approaches may include lifestyle changes such as regular exercise, stress reduction techniques, and a balanced diet. For some women, hormonal therapy, such as the use of combined oral contraceptive pills or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), may be recommended to regulate hormone levels and manage mood symptoms. In severe cases, a healthcare provider may suggest other medications or refer the patient to a mental health professional for additional support.

Lifestyle Changes

Several lifestyle changes may help manage the symptoms of PMDD. Engaging in regular physical activity, such as aerobic exercises or yoga, can help reduce anxiety and improve mood. Adopting stress management techniques like deep breathing exercises, meditation, or engaging in hobbies can also be beneficial. A balanced diet with reduced caffeine, sugar, and salt intake may contribute to overall well-being. It is essential to establish a support system and communicate openly with loved ones about the challenges faced during this time.


PMDD can significantly impact a woman's physical and emotional well-being. It is important for women experiencing severe premenstrual symptoms to seek medical advice to ensure accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. With the right approach, PMDD symptoms can be effectively managed, allowing women to lead fulfilling lives.