Feeling anxious before your period is a normal experience for many women. The hormonal fluctuations that occur during the menstrual cycle can cause physical and emotional changes. Hormonal fluctuations can lead to a drop in serotonin levels, which may trigger feelings of anxiety, sadness, or depression. Understanding the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle can help you better manage your feelings of anxiety.
Hormones Involved in the Menstrual Cycle
The menstrual cycle is regulated by hormones produced in the ovaries and pituitary gland in the brain. The main hormones associated with the menstrual cycle are estrogen, progesterone, and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). These hormones are responsible for the release of an egg from the ovary and the thickening of the uterine lining, known as the endometrium. The ovarian cycle is divided into two phases: the follicular phase and the luteal phase.
The follicular phase begins on the first day of your period and ends with ovulation. During this phase, your body produces more estrogen. This hormone helps the follicles in your ovaries mature and prepares the uterus for a fertilized egg. The increased estrogen can also make you feel more energized and motivated.
The luteal phase begins after ovulation and ends with the start of your next period. During this phase, the body produces more progesterone. Progesterone helps the endometrium thicken and prepares it for a fertilized egg. It also helps regulate your body temperature and prepare your breasts for breastfeeding. However, the increase in progesterone can also cause feelings of anxiety.
The Link between Progesterone and Anxiety
Progesterone is known to have an effect on the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is responsible for regulating mood. When progesterone levels rise, serotonin levels drop. This can lead to feelings of sadness, depression, and anxiety. Women who experience premenstrual syndrome (PMS) often report feeling more anxious during their luteal phase.
Managing Anxiety before Your Period
The best way to manage anxiety before your period is to understand the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle and to learn how to recognize the signs of anxiety. Taking steps to reduce stress, such as getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and eating a healthy diet, can also help manage anxiety. If your anxiety is severe or interfering with your daily life, you may want to talk to your doctor about medications that can help.
Anxiety before your period is a common symptom of hormonal fluctuations during the menstrual cycle. The main hormone responsible for this is progesterone, which can lead to a drop in serotonin levels. Understanding the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle and taking steps to reduce stress can help you manage anxiety before your period. If your anxiety is severe or interfering with your daily life, talk to your doctor about medications that can help.