In Southeast Asia, women are less prone to premenstrual syndrome (PMS) than women living in the United States. The US has about 70% to 90% women with PMS symptoms. Researchers have attributed the marked difference in rate of PMS symptoms between women in Southeast Asia and the US from factors such as social structure, and living style. Premenstrual syndrome is known as a dysfunction of the ovaries that affect’s the woman’s menstruation. PMS also affects her normal way of life because of hormonal changes and it also greatly impacts the woman’s emotional and physical state. PMS may begin one or a couple of weeks prior to menstruation and starts to wane when the period itself begins. This article will talk about the role of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine in treating PMS.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is more than a thousand year old Chinese healing practice used to treat tension in certain areas in the body brought about by blood and qi stagnation.
How acupuncture affects women with PMS
Blood and liver qi stagnation
Practitioners of Chinese herbal medicine think that a huge number of women suffering from PMS have liver blood or qi stagnation or both; so, with the use of needles in certain points in the body (sometimes using mild electrical current for better stimulation), the function of the liver system is improved and the stagnation gets removed. This helps in the lessening of PMS symptoms.
Releasing the nervous tension
Acupuncture and herbal medicine help stimulate the flow of blood and energy in the nervous system helping women to relax, thus relieving their mood disorders such as anxiety, tiredness, insomnia and depression.
Yin and Yang qi
Yin and yang are part of the natural energy the human body possesses. Licensed acupuncturists and herbalists agree that PMS may sometimes come about from the imbalance of yin and yang qi in a woman’s body. The balance of yin and yang is restored using acupuncture and Chinese herbs. Hormone balance is achieved before ovulation resulting in the treatment of PMS.
Cramps and pains
Acupuncture can treat pain and cramping caused by menstruation. It releases the stagnated blood and qi in the stomach resulting in the relaxation of the stomach muscles leading to the relief of pain and cramping in that region.
Kidney deficiency leads to edema in the body of women with PMS. To bring about the normal function of the kidney, acupuncture is needed. It can stimulate more secretion of fluids resulting in the flushing out of toxins via the process of urination.