If you want a complete resolution of your premenstrual syndrome or PMS symptoms such as acne eruptions around or during menses, hives, headaches, and mood swings acupuncture is the treatment you should consider. Acupuncturists most of the time resolve these symptoms within one or two cycles of menstruation.

How does acupuncture treat PMS?

Using a combination of Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioners are able to treat PMS. In accomplishing this, these practitioners and acupuncturists need to first do a comprehensive medical examination of the patient and identify the symptoms that need not be limited to the patient’s menstrual cycle. The evaluation may even encompass the other organ systems of the patient and not only her reproductive system and organs. When this is done, the acupuncturist will be able to detect a pattern diagnosis that is unique to each patient. The symptoms are grouped. Oftentimes the diagnosing patterns of associated symptoms are classified based on the organs systems of the body they affect. Usually, the acupuncturist might associate shoulder and neck tension, digestive problems, and headaches on the temples with PMS symptoms and other menstrual conditions.

PMS sufferers are usually diagnosed by acupuncturists and TCM practitioners in Cleveland with problems that involve the Liver System. To give you a little background, the movement of vital energy or Qi or Chi through the organs and throughout the body is the responsibility of the Liver System; without the Liver System, the muscles cannot move, the brain cannot think, the digestive organs cannot digest food and so on and so forth. The body tightens up when we get tensed or stressed. This causes the QI to stop or move slowly through the muscle tissues and organs. Conditions such as muscle pain, menstrual cramps, headaches and other symptoms arise when Qi stops moving.

Energy pathways called meridians are the vehicles in which qi circulates throughout the body. They function in the same way as veins, arteries, and capillaries although these organs circulate blood all over the body instead of Qi. The meridians originate at the toes and fingers, and then pass through the stomach. Each meridian is named after the organs they pass through: therefore, we have the Liver Channel or Liver Meridian that starts at the big toe, goes up the inner leg and pass through the reproductive organs. It then passes the sides of the chest (through the breast and liver) and then to the eyes and head. PMS sufferers manifest symptoms that usually are the result of stress causing them to tense up which leads to liver Qi stagnation. According to TCM, the blood is stored in the liver and conveys this blood to the uterus. A stagnant Liver Qi prior to menstruation compounds the symptoms because the uterus does not receive adequate blood. The stagnant Qi causes depression, irritability or anger or can make the sufferer cry a lot. The whole meridian can be affected resulting in menstrual cramping, and breast tenderness and swelling.

The good news is that acupuncture is able to restore the normal and free flow of Qi. The acupuncturist will insert filiform needles in the site of the Qi blockage. Herbal remedies that have been used for over 2,000 years also help in addressing PMS problems. One case study of how well acupuncture responds well to PMS symptoms involve a woman suffering from mood swings related to PMS so severe that they affected her family life and work. She described her symptoms as like a half a month of great feeling and then followed by the next two weeks of feeling of anger, depression and crying spells. During the second half of the month, she couldn’t sleep well, woke up frequently during sleep and suffered from cramping and breast tenderness prior to and after her menstruation.

The acupuncturist initially started her on weekly acupuncture treatments and gave her a customized Chinese herbal formula in the form of a tea to drink. Her sleep improved after the first week and her menstrual cramping decreased after a couple of visits. She reestablished her normal sleep patterns after four visits and during this time it was four days before her menstruation. From to time, she experienced breast tenderness but her emotions were now all normal. She had another period after her fifth visit and had no breast tenderness during that time. For one day though, she experienced some cramping. After her sixth treatment, her acupuncturist lessened her sessions to biweekly affairs and after her seventh treatment, her mood swings, breast tenderness, and cramping were gone for good. This is a typical case of how fast PMS symptoms dissipate with acupuncture treatment.