11 ways to control period mood swings and ease PMS

Ever wondered why your mood seems to be on a roller-coaster ride during your periods? Well, those sudden shifts from joy to irritability or sadness can feel overwhelming. While some women experience zero or mild mood swings, some report severe period mood swings. These emotional fluctuations are often a result of hormonal changes in the menstrual cycle, particularly the drop in estrogen and progesterone. They may even cause fatigue, anxiety and mental health disturbances. And so, it is essential that you know how to manage your mood swings during periods!

What causes mood swings during periods?

Mood swings during menstruation are primarily caused by hormonal fluctuations in the body, particularly changes in estrogen and progesterone levels. These hormones influence the production and regulation of serotonin and dopamine, brain chemicals (neurotransmitters), which affect mood. According to a study published by the Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences, due to hormonal fluctuation before and during periods, a woman may experience symptoms such as anger, irritability and even bouts of depression. Additionally, physical symptoms such as cramps, bloating, and fatigue can also contribute to emotional distress. Some women with severe premenstrual syndrome or PMS may have undiagnosed depression.

How to control period mood swings?

Mood swings can be so irritating for one’s own self and for loved ones around you, that you may end up asking yourself, “How to stop period mood swings?” Here are 11 easy tricks to manage mood swings during periods and uplift your mental health!

1. Stretch and exercise

Regular physical activity is a powerful tool for managing mood swings and improving mental health. Exercise increases the production of endorphins, often referred to as “feel-good” hormones. These endorphins can help alleviate stress, improve mood, and reduce symptoms of depression, found a study published by a study published by Psychophysiology. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily. You can stretch, walk, swim, lift weights, etc. to stay active and control your mood.

2. Drink enough water

We know that mood swings can be much worse with dehydration. Hence, it is essential to stay hydrated throughout the day. A study published by the Public Library Of Science One suggests that up to 500 ml of daily water intake has positive effects on mood, keeping you happy.

Woman drinking water
Drinking water is beneficial for mood. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

3. Focus on your diet

What you eat is what you are! If you eat or consume foods such as junk foods, caffeine, alcohol, etc. daily, they can be harmful to your health and may exacerbate mood swings. So, focus on foods rich in complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, which can help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce mood swings, ” explains obstetrician, gynaecologist and fertility Specialist Dr Nirmala M. Moreover, control your consumption of sugar to manage your mood.

Also read: 6 healthy fruits to uplift your mood

4. Aromatherapy

Essential oils can lift your mood and make you feel good within seconds. You may use essential oils such as lavender, chamomile, or peppermint to create a calming atmosphere around you and feel relaxed, suggests a study published by the International Journal Of Molecular Sciences. Aromatherapy can help reduce stress and anxiety. To use it, you may add a few drops to your bath, or apply diluted essential oils to your pulse points.

5. Distract yourself from negative thoughts

Whenever negative thoughts attract your mind, try to distract yourself and replace them with positive affirmations. “Do not question yourself every time you experience mood swings. Instead, accept that they are common during the monthly cycle and can be managed,” says Dr Nirmala. With a positive mindset, you can protect your mental health from getting worse.

6. Laughter therapy

If you are getting irritated and not able to control your anxious thoughts, try watching a comedy show, a funny movie, or reading a humorous book. A study published by Nursing Open found that laughter therapy has a positive effect on not only psychological function but also physiological function. It helps release endorphins and can lift your mood.

Yoga to manage period mood swings
Practice laughter therapy daily to manage your stress levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

7. Dance it out

Dancing is a great way to combine physical exercise and fun. According to Frontiers in Physiology, dance is associated with positive physical, cognitive, and sociological adaptations for people with emotional and physical problems. So, put on your favorite music and dance. This will release your pent-up energy and boost your mood.

8. Consume herbal tea

Drinking calming herbal teas such as chamomile, lavender or holy basil can help soothe your mind and body, promoting relaxation and better sleep. They can be especially beneficial when you are down because herbal teas are also known to reduce menstrual cramps and pain,” says the expert.

9. Interact with pets

Pets, especially dogs and cats, can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. A study published by the International Journal Of Environmental Research and Public Health reveals that interacting with animals has been shown to produce significant decreases in depression, anxiety, pain, and pulse. So, spend some time with pets and increase feelings of happiness.

10. Sleep well

Sleep deprivation is one of the most common causes of mood swings. Therefore, adequate sleep between seven and eight hours a night is essential to uplifting your mood. According to the JMIR Mental Health, sleep deprivation reports increases in negative moods (anger, frustration, irritability, sadness) and decreases in positive moods. Sleeplessness is often a symptom of mood disorders, such as depression and anxiety. So, make sure you sleep well!

Sleep helps to manage mood swings
Sleep well to reduce stress and stay happy! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

11. Limit alcohol and caffeine

Both alcohol and caffeine can negatively impact mood and exacerbate premenstrual syndrome symptoms. Alcohol can disrupt sleep and increase feelings of depression and anxiety. “Caffeine, on the other hand, can increase anxiety and irritability. Try to limit your intake of these substances, especially in the days leading up to your period,” Dr Nirmala.

With these tips, you can manage your mood swings during your period!

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