Cycledork Letter #11: Preparing For PMDD – By Chika Onyejiukwa

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Welcome to our Cycledork Letters series! We recently asked people to contribute their candid thoughts on menstruation. The results were period pieces that were funny, personal, reflective, informative, and endearing. This is letter #11 in the series. Read all of the letters here.

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Cycledork Letters: #11

by Chika Onyejiukwa

My period and I have quite the relationship!

As a person with PMDD*, my menstrual cycle and I have a relationship – 24 hours before my period I must do the following: take medication, change my diet to fruits and veggies and water, and rest. If not, the morning of my period is not exactly fun! If I eat with the pain and not take meds or undergo the diet change, I will more than likely throw it up, which actually makes me feel a lot better. In addition, I have intense cramps that keep me pretty bed-bound for anywhere between 24-48 hours. Then I begin to feel better. Over the course of those days I also cannot eat or hold down real food, so I must ensure that most of this time is spent sleeping so that I don’t collapse. Although extreme, I am coming to terms with the condition and finding ways to change my lifestyle to help minimize the pain. This year, I downloaded a period tracker app to my phone so that I could be more alert of when and how to prepare for it.

*Editor’s note: PMDD (premenstrual dysphoric disorder) is defined as a severe, sometimes disabling extension of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). It is very common and affects more than 3 million US women every year. [Mayo Clinic] Stay tuned for more posts about PMDD and managing symptoms.

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