As with many physical and emotional ailments and symptoms there are risk factors associated with PMS. It doesn’t necessarily mean that if you have these risk factors you will have PMS symptoms, but there is a greater likelihood that you might have them. Also, the more risk factors someone has the more severe the PMS may become.
Some risks come from age, physiological factors and cultural factors. For the most part Asian women find that pain is the most common PMS symptom while Western women seem more affected by depression. Women who are Hispanic American report having the most severe symptoms, and Asian American women report fewer symptoms. Caucasian women seem to fall in the middle of the other two groups.
PMS symptoms typically start during the mid-20's and can be found in teens at a moderate to severe level. Women don’t usually seek treatment until the mid 30s. Some think that PMS symptoms reduce after age 35 and disappear with menopause, although over 6% of women have very severe symptoms between age 35 and 44. Some studies show that women in the 35-44 age group who suffer with major depression symptoms are more likely to have PMS.
Some other risk factors include:
- A sedentary lifestyle
- Diet high in sugar
- High caffeine consumption
- Abuse of alcohol
- More children
- Family history
- Dietary factors (lower levels of certain vitamins and minerals, especially magnesium, vitamin E and manganese)
Risk factors like family history and age you cannot change, but other factors like smoking, using alcohol and consuming sugar and caffeine can be controlled and will hopefully yield fewer PMS symptoms for you.