Question:

Is it normal to cry more before and during my period?

EXPERT ANSWER

Lots of girls and women find that their moods change right before and during their periods. Some (like you) find that they cry more easily, others get crankier than usual, and still others just feel “down” or blue.” You may feel as though it doesn’t take much to get you upset! While you might be tempted to curl up in bed and hide when you are on your period, there are lots of things you can do that will help you feel better. Try doing something active that you enjoy (maybe try that Latin dance class you’ve been hearing about?) or talking with a friend. If your “blue mood” gets in the way of your daily life, or lasts for more than a couple days, it’s important that you get help. In rare cases, feeling sad and more emotional than usual can be a sign of a more serious problem, such as depression. Talk to a parent, doctor, school nurse, counselor, or other trusted adult about what you’re experiencing.

MOM ANSWER

Oh yeah. Mood swings are definitely a common symptom of PMS. I tend to get a bit short-tempered myself, but I have been known to be weepy, too. I just try to recognize that my emotions are more related to PMS than they are to life and that helps me keep my emotions in check. You've already noticed the correlation between crying and your period, so hopefully that will help you keep the tears at bay. You can also take proactive steps to manage your mood -- call a friend and go do something you enjoy, exercise regularly (it can help elevate your mood and alleviate cramps … bonus!), and be sure to eat healthfully.

PEER ANSWER

Um, absolutely! I've definitely been known to cry before, during, and on occasion, even after my period (I'm a crier, what can I say?). I know the extra emotion has something to do with your hormones changing during the days before and during your period. I make sure to be really nice to myself during that time. I do things that relax me, like take a bath, go for a walk, or read. A little ice cream doesn't hurt, either! Whatever you do, just make sure you take good care of yourself.

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