PMS or premenstrual syndrome is a group of symptoms that is experienced by 20% of the female population who are within the reproductive age.  The symptoms include behavioural and physical changes like mood swings, irritability, anxiety, tender breasts, bloating, abdominal and back pain, nausea, etc.  
While the symptoms can be mild, moderate or severe depending on the person, it is important to understand how differently PMS and menstruation is perceived. 
The Ayurvedic perception of PMS
While Ayurveda perceives menstruation as an important medium of bodily detox, it also explains how symptoms experienced right before the onset of menstrual flow can be severe and therefore managing them right will ensure an obstacle-free menstrual journey.
Ayurveda says Dosha imbalance is involved in causing PMS symptoms.
Doshas, translating to that which can cause problems, are believed to be the fundamental substances present in individual bodies that can fluctuate and thus determine the changes in growth, age, disorders and proper bodily functions.
The Kapha corresponding to water & earth, Pitta corresponding to fire and water, and Vata corresponding to space and air, are all governed by the respective elements. An imbalance caused by the respective energies of water & earth, fire and air, is therefore involved in triggering the signs and symptoms of PMS.
Although, the emphasis on the signs and symptoms stays with Apana Vata, one of the subdoshas of Vata. Situated in the lower pelvic region, it is responsible for the elimination of menstrual blood, stools and urine.  
The increase in Apana Vata results in symptoms like disturbed digestion, headache, bloating, etc. Apana Vata also aggravates the Prana Vata that is located in the head and brain and is connected to mood swings and behavioural disorders.  Therefore, managing PMS with Ayurveda ensures that menstruation is regulated every step of the way and that all the doshas are balanced.
Signs and Symptoms of PMS
PMS occurs right before the onset of periods. This happens because of hormonal imbalance that governs menstruation. This in turn causes specific effects on our body that lead to physical and behavioural changes.
These symptoms may include
- Changes in appetite
- Weight gain
- Abdominal pain
- Back pain
- Lower back pain
- Swelling and tenderness in the breasts
There are plenty of ways to manage PMS through Ayurveda and natural healing. Let us explore how managing PMS means both, preventing the signs and symptoms if they are recurrent, and also curing symptoms if they reach a point of severity.
With a Healthy Body
The Ayurvedic principle of maintaining a healthy body emphasises that regular exercise and yoga practice enables body to cope with hormonal changes recurring every month. This promotes an active and healthy lifestyle. Depending on your daily routine, work schedule, you can opt for various Yoga poses like:
This pose helps relieve strain on the thighs, back, shoulder, and hip and helps alleviate pain. 
The cat pose helps relieve tension in the shoulders, and stretches the back, torso as well as the neck. 
- Baddha Konasana
The butterfly pose stimulates and improves the function of the reproductive system, and helps in regulating menstruation. 
This pose helps relax the body and standing up and bending forward helps relieve anxiety and mood swings. 
While regular exercise and yoga helps prevent PMS, severe signs and symptoms after the onset of PMS are difficult to curb.
Therefore, even simple Pranayama helps relax the body and enable stress alleviation.
With Proper Nourishment
Appropriate nourishment of the body, termed as Ahaar in Ayurveda, enhances body immunity with various herbs that help alleviate the various PMS symptoms.
The Ashoka tree is an ancient, sacred tree most revered in Ayurveda for various medicinal and healing purposes. With components like tannins, catechols, flavonoids, glucosides, and other calcium compounds, the bark of Ashoka helps resolve menstrual disorders like irregular periods and also ensures relief from abdominal pain and other spasms. 
Consumption: Consume Ashoka powder by boiling in milk twice a day after meals for spasm relief.
Containing essential alkaloids and glycosides, Lodhra helps regulate menstrual flow, reduces inflammation in the uterus and relieves depression.  Lodhra is also a powerful Ayurvedic ingredient in treating PCOD.
Consumption: in the form of syrup, powder.
Enriched with key vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and proteins, Gokhru’s root and fruit are both helpful in treating many diseases.
It helps in hormonal balancing and provides relief from premenstrual symtoms. 
Consumption: Can be consumed in capsule, powder or tablet form. With universal health benefits.
Trikatu which is a mixture of black pepper, pippali and ginger powders is the efficient combination that balances the Agni.  An imbalance in Agni causes skipped periods and water retention that leads to tender breasts, nausea and lethargy.
Consumption: Trikatu supplements help release the toxins from the body and give strength to the reproductive system. 
Dashamoola is recommended to be used to regulate the Vata imbalance.  This leads to extremely painful periods characterised by lower back and abdominal pain, bloating, anxiety and insomnia.
Consumption: Dashamoola tea enables pain relief and ensures a smoother menstrual journey.
- With Positive Thinking
Positive thinking, termed as Vichaar in Ayurveda, vouch for positive mindfulness.
Managing PMS with Ayurveda means imbibing the most important aspect of Ayurveda – positive thinking – in the form of meditation and manifestation. This goes a long way in ensuring balanced mental and emotional wellness. In today’s world of leading women, working several jobs and managing home and work life impeccably well, positive impact on one’s life with manifestations becomes necessary. 
Identifying the root cause of your stress and initiating everyday breath regulating exercises, jotting down manifestations on a paper and reading them every day, enables a positive effect on one’s mind and promises a better day ahead.
While prevention is better than cure, a lot of factors like lifestyle, over – consumption of junk food, intermittently active sexual life, stress, etc. can still impact how long the menstrual cycle lasts and thus the causative factors of a mild or severe PMS may differ. Managing PMS with Ayurveda, tracking your menstrual cycle every month can ensure a regular, hassle-free period.
It is therefore advisable to switch to the Ayurvedic lifestyle to ensure a healthier, more nourished, more active and stronger body.