Something which I have come to realise recently, is that, my OCD symptoms? They worsen when my period is due:
My obsessions become more intrusive-
the compulsions caused by my obsessions become more repetitive-
&, the emotions conveyed by such obsessions and compulsions become more distressing-
Having researched into this though, I understand that; I am not alone, for, several studies have proven that symptoms of OCD do tend to worsen around the time of one’s period… They have proven that, compulsive beahviour is considerably more pronounced for many women in the premenstrual phase of their period (the 6 days before menstruation starts), as well as in the first few days of their period (so much so, in fact, that 49% of women, OCD sufferers or not, notice an increase in intrusive thoughts (obsessions and compulsions) during the premenstrual phase of their cycle… During this phase, depression, anxiety, and OCD symptoms can all increase, and some women may even be diagnosed with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), a much more severe form of PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome). Why? Because of hormonal changes that occur over the course of the menstrual cycle, namely, low estrogen levels…
Now, this shouldn’t come as a massive surprise considering that the menstrual cycle is known to impact mood and cognitive function. Something which you might not know, however, is that the impact of periods is likely to be more extreme in women with BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder). This is because BPD increases an individuals sensitivity to hormonal changes which, in turn, can (and often, does) lead to an increase in the effect that their menstrual cycle has on their mood…
So, the takeaway point from this post? That, our periods can really mess with our OCD symptoms. In fact, they can really mess with our minds- our mental health- in general to be honest.
Knowing the above- knowing that all our emotions and sensitivities are heightened when it’s our ‘time of the month’, I hope that you make an effort to treat yourself with greater kindness (you should always treat yourself with kindness but, when your period is due, doing so is even more important), and, that you’re gentler with yourself-
take it easy.