Premenstrual syndrome, commonly referred to as PMS, is a group of symptoms from which as many as 90% of women suffer from. Normally starting a week or two before menstruation, PMS symptoms can vary in severity, ranging from mild, where there is very little discomfort, to so severe that many women are forced to miss work or school.
Each of us experiences PMS differently. Symptoms can be physical, emotional or a combination of both. And what’s more is that symptoms can also change throughout our lives, varying due to things like age, hormone levels and stress as well as other factors such as diet and exercise.
COMMON SYMPTOMS OF PMS
Physical Symptoms of PMS
- Swollen and/or tender breasts
- Lower abdominal cramping & pain
- Lower backache
- Constipation and/or diarrhea
- Feeling bloated or gassy
- A lowered tolerance for noise and light
Emotional Symptoms of PMS
- Mood swings and/or feeling irritable, angry or hostile
- Feeling tense, anxious, sad or depressed and can include crying spells
- Problems with sleeping which can include either too much or too little
- Feeling fatigued and tired
- Changes in appetite or food cravings
- Memory and concentration issues
- Lowered libido
HOW CBD CAN HELP FOR PMS
With cannabidiol (CBD) now being legal in all 50 states, many women are swopping their pain killers and PMS medications for CBD. And based on the feedback we are getting, many women are experiencing positive results.
And although there are no studies to date which are investigating CBD specifically for PMS, science does back these women up when it comes to the treatment of specific symptoms.
The Science Behind CBD
So how does CBD work exactly? Each of us have something called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is made up of endocannabinoids (the cannabinoids our bodies produce themselves), cannabinoid receptors (the receptors to which cannabinoids bind) as well as enzymes which break down excess cannabinoids.
The ECS plays a vital role in helping our bodies stay healthy. In fact, scientists believe that a lack of endocannabinoids (officially called clinical endocannabinoid deficiency syndrome) could be the root cause of many different diseases, making the ECS a great target site for therapeutic interventions.
The reason for this is that cannabinoid receptors are distributed throughout our bodies – from our intestines, muscles, immune system, to our brains and nervous systems.
And when you introduce cannabinoids such as CBD into your body, they interact with these receptors in such a way that our bodies have the ability to get back into balance and help to heal itself. It does this by regulating the levels of our own bodies endocannabinoids, helping them and our bodies function more effectively.
CBD FOR PMS
Because of the ability of CBD to create a state of balance within our bodies while interacting with the ECS and its receptors, it has the ability to help with many of the symptoms characteristic of PMS. Let’s look at a few of these.
CBD for PMS: Pain, Cramping & Breast Tenderness
CBD’s analgesic effects are well established which is why so many women are finding relief from back pain, period pains and breast tenderness when supplementing with CBD.
CBD works in a couple of different ways to help relieve pain and inflammation, the foremost of these is by suppressing the α3 GlyRs receptors which send out pain signals, effectively stopping pain in its tracks.
CBD for PMS: Digestive Issues & Bloating
One area of the body which is particularly rich in cannabinoid receptors is the gut which is why CBD can be very effective in helping premenstrual women deal with digestive issues and bloating.
Researchers found that when CBD is ingested it can help improve the body’s digestive functions by controlling tissue homeostasis and important intestinal functions including things like digestion and bowel movements.
CBD for PMS: Anxiety & Mood Swings
One of the most annoying symptoms of PMS is that creeping feeling of anxiety. Add to that the mood swings, crying spells and irritability, and the days leading up to your period can only be described as hell.
Luckily, CBD can help with these symptoms too. Scientists have found that because of the way that CBD interacts with the ECS and regulate endocannabinoid levels as well as modulate serotonin secretion, it can be very effective in helping with anxiety and mood swings.
CBD for PMS: Sleep
Another common symptom of PMS is an inability to fall asleep as well as sometimes waking up in the middle of the night. CBD has the ability to interact with the brain’s network of receptors and neurotransmitters that are vital to producing a good night’s sleep. But most profoundly, it has the ability to promote REM-sleep, the sleep-stage which is thought to especially benefit emotional health.
In a recent review study, researchers found that CBD has therapeutic potential for the treatment of insomnia by promoting REM sleep, reducing many of the negative psychological effects of sleep deprivation.
HOW TO USE CBD FOR PMS
CBD Oils & Capsules
One of the most popular ways of using CBD for PMS is to use a CBD oil or CBD capsules. These types of products are very good at providing effective relief that lasts a long time. Oils can be applied directly under the tongue (sublingual) and held there for about 60 seconds and then swallowed. Capsules can simply be swallowed with water or juice.
We recommend choosing a high-quality product that is specifically formulated for relieving PMS symptoms. These will include other beneficial herbs such as evening primrose oil, clary sage and cramp bark extracts which are all known for their effectiveness in relieving PMS symptoms.
Dosage will vary depending on the severity of your symptoms but we recommend starting with the directions as stated on the product.
Another great way to use CBD for PMS is by sipping on a CBD infused tea. As with CBD oils and capsules, look for a tea that also contains other helpful herbs such as sage, red raspberry leaf, ginger root and evening primrose.
CBD Creams, Lotions & Sprays
CBD creams, lotions and sprays are good for providing localized pain relief from things such as cramping, bloating and lower back pain. Another way in which women use these types of products is as a way to treat acne and reduce inflammation.
Probably the most fun way to treat your PMS symptoms is with CBD infused chocolate. Not only does it make you feel better and soothe your soul, chocolate also contains magnesium, which can help alleviate cramps and increase energy as well as endorphins which can help improve your mood.
CBD Infused Sanitary Products & Suppositories
Some women even use CBD infused tampons or vaginal suppositories to help relieve menstrual & pelvic discomfort. This is an effective way to deliver the soothing benefits of CBD directly to the areas that needs it most.
DISCLAIMER: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Consult with a physician if you have a serious medical condition or use prescription medications. A doctor’s advice should always be sought before before embarking on any new treatment.