2. What Causes PMS?

The exact cause of PMS is unknown. It’s thought to be the result of changing hormone levels during the second half of the menstrual cycle reacting with brain chemicals. After ovulation, estrogen levels drop dramatically, and progesterone levels rise. This cycling of hormones alters serotonin, a neurotransmitter that affects both mood and sensitivity to pain. Research suggests women who experience PMS have lower serotonin levels before their periods than most women who do not experience PMS.

Monthly cycle ViDi Studio / Getty Images

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