Treatment for Teens with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
What It Is:
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder is a more severe form of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS), characterized by significant premenstrual mood disturbances, which can severely affect a teen’s ability to think clearly, maintain relationships, and function properly in general. Teens with PMDD can experience levels of depression and/or anxiety for a week or two before the menstrual cycle that are so severe that they disrupt multiple areas of the teens’ lives.
What It Looks Like:
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder is a condition that affects between 5-10% of women and can present a range of uncomfortable symptoms in the weeks before the menstrual cycle. Teens can experience symptoms such as extreme feelings of depression, anxiety, and/or dramatic mood shifts, for no apparent reason. These depressive feelings can cause teens to experience conflicts in their relationships, lack of clarity in their thinking, and difficulty staying on top of responsibilities, such as academics. Teens usually will feel these depressive symptoms, related to Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, for the one or two weeks prior to the menstrual cycle, but then feel relatively fine, for the other two weeks of the cycle. Because teens may be experiencing symptoms of Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder alongside other symptoms related to a Mood Disorder, such as Anxiety, Depression, or Bipolar Disorder, it’s important for teens to be thoroughly evaluated, with careful attention paid to Co-Occurring Disorders.
One of the most important parts of treating teens with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder is a proper diagnosis, from the very beginning. In cases where teens do have Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder and don’t have a Co-Occurring Disorder, they can work with doctors and/or endocrinologists, in order to come up with a treatment plan to address the imbalances. In cases where teens may have Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder alongside another mental illness, teens need treatment that can address all the underlying causes at play. At Paradigm Malibu, we’re emphatic about an extensive diagnosis process, which takes special consideration of the mental, emotional, and physical elements of each teen. This is especially important in the treatment of teenage girls, who experience such radical hormonal shifts during these years, which can cause and/or exacerbate, an array of complicated symptoms.
In both diagnosis and treatment at Paradigm Malibu, we’re dedicated to addressing all aspects of teens’ lives, including the mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual. During treatment at Paradigm Malibu, by incorporating physical aspects of treatment, such as nutrition plans and exercise, we work to provide teens with resources that can positively support their physical health. We also make any medication decisions with careful consideration of how hormonal levels might be negatively or positively affected. At the same time, we want to teach teenagers how closely related their mental and physical health are, so that they can support themselves in holistic ways, when moving forward.
How do I know if my daughter has Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder?
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder can be a difficult condition to diagnose and often Mood Disorders such as Anxiety and Depression are mistaken for it. The best way to ensure that your daughter is getting the proper treatment she needs is to have a respected professional provide a thorough diagnostic process. Regardless of whether your daughter has PMDD, or is perhaps suffering from severe hormonal shifts alongside a mood disorder, the most important thing is getting her the professional help and support she needs, as soon as possible.