PMS symptoms vary from female to female and can vary from month to month but one of the common complaints many women have is that they often have acne breakouts just before their time of the month. Is this a coincidence or does PMS cause acne?
PMS Can Cause or Worsen Acne Breakouts
The About.com Acne guide says that up to 78% of adult women report that PMS causes acne for them.
It’s bad enough that PMS makes woman cranky, bloated, crampy, and generally feeling ugly inside and out. But to have a few giant zits turn up adds insult to injury, doesn’t it? The cause of PMS acne isn’t just because you couldn’t resist the urge and scarfed down a family size chocolate bar. You can blame the hormonal surge, too. That surge can cause excessive oil secretions and this can mean pimples. Not only can you get new pimples but you’ll often find that they’re the more painful kind and that if you already have a problem with acne, it’ll worsen the few days before your monthly period start.
Can Anything Be Done About PMS Acne?
- Many women find that keeping an eye on the calendar and taking a bit of extra care in their daily face washing routine can diminish the severity of their breakout.
- Watching your diet around PMS time can be helpful, too, so do your best to avoid succumbing to the junk food cravings. Do your best to drink more water and stay away from caffeine and alcoholic beverages during this time.
- Get your 8 hours. Less sleep can equal worse PMS symptoms and worse acne symptoms.
- Epsom salts can help acne. Using Epsom salts (as described in our Epsom salts and acne blog post) can also help draw big pimples that sit under the skin out faster so that they can heal faster.
- Consider herbal supplements (with caution and medical advice, of course) that are known to help with PMS. Evening Primrose Oil is one to consider investigating as there are many positive testimonials where women with severe PMS and related symptoms found a dramatic improvement within a few weeks after starting to take Evening Primrose Oil.
- Some suggest ensuring you take a multivitamin can help, too.
- Keep a diary about your PMS symptoms and you may notice an emerging pattern. Perhaps you have worse symptoms when certain lifestyle issues are at play, such as stress, diet, lack of sleep, etc. A diary about your symptoms can help you pinpoint specific things that seem to exacerbate the problem.
- Getting a prescription for birth control pills is a solution that some women seek as well as birth control pills have been known to reduce their acne and PMS symptoms (and some women take birth control pills to avoid their period altogether)
Having a “Good’ Period?
There’s a certain feminine hygiene product company that suggests that you can have a happy period. That’s probably never going to be true (at least not after the first few months in adolescence when you become a ‘woman’ and there’s a honeymoon period with your period that quickly ends!) Listening to cues in your body can help you take action to minimize the affect PMS has on your skin and your mood (or you can just warn everyone to leave you alone for a few days!).
Please feel free to chime in below in our comments section if you’ve got anything to add here about fighting PMS and hormonal acne
Photo credit Mike Licht, Flickr.