Category Archives: Individual Counseling

Frequently Asked Questions About PMS Depression

People often hate Mondays because that’s the usual time when they need to stop being lazy and get off their butts to make money. I was not one of those people because I actually loved working. I tend to be sad when I couldn’t do anything during the weekend; that’s why I sometimes would accept sidelines through my friends or hang out with them to get out of the house. However, if there was one thing that I hated, it was the last week of the month. That’s when my period ordeal would usually start.

Yes, you read that right – I really said “ordeal.” The reason was that two days before my menstruation would arrive, my body would ache all over. Even if I did not work out too hard during that day, it was still as if my joints and muscles were on fire. And on the next day, I would get a high fever all of a sudden. If it happened for the first time during this pandemic, I might worry that I was experiencing the symptoms of COVID-19. But no, it was just PMS (which did not make it all better).


Dealing With PMS

In reality, I started getting my period at the early age of 10 years old. Back then, I had no conception of premenstrual syndrome (PMs). I did not experience anything unusual, even the first time that I saw blood on my shorts. I even thought, “Cool! I’m a teenager now! I am a big girl now!” The PMS only began to manifest after I got diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).

I asked my gynecologist about it, and she told me that PMS could be one of its many symptoms. She said that I was even lucky because my menstrual cycle was not heavily affected by PCOS. Apparently, an irregular menstrual cycle was one of the more common signs people with the latter disorder deal with. Still, the downside was that I felt more than cramping or pressure on my lower abdomen. As mentioned above, I got flu-like symptoms, which stressed me out a lot.

Then, Depression Joined The Party

Even though I was not very happy with my PMS symptoms, I found it somewhat tolerable on most days. I pretty much accepted after the third month that it was my new normal, that I would have to deal with it until the end of time. Unfortunately, I would sometimes notice that I would get sadder than ever when I was PMS-ing. It was as if my optimism and positive thinking would go out of the window during that period. I tend to act like a hermit, which meant that I refused to leave the house or talk to other people even if they were already at my door.

 In all honesty, I would not have made a big deal out of it if not for my friends pointing out that depression was not common for people getting their menstruations. That pushed me to talk to my gynecologist, who confirmed that PMS and depression could go hand-in-hand sometimes.


Why do I have PMS before my period?

PMS starts happening to you before your period because your estrogen and progesterone levels decrease dramatically when you are not pregnant. This can also be caused by chemical changes in the brain, such as fluctuations of your serotonin levels that now trigger your PMS before your period. This can also be caused by depression, which happens during severe cases of PMS.

Can PMS make you depressed?

In severe cases of PMS, a woman can go through depression. The fluctuating chemicals now cause this in our brains and the increase of our hormones as well. However, instead of being called PMS, it is better known as Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), where the women who experience this report severe depression before they get their periods. In even severe cases, women have reported being suicidal when experiencing PMDD. 

What is the difference between PMS and PMT?

With PMS, it is easier to control, and it has little to no impairment in your daily life. According to a study, three to eight percent of women can experience different symptoms, affecting their daily lives. On the other hand, PMT has been known to be characterized by the following symptoms: tender breasts, migraines, abdominal cramps, depression, irritability, and more. PMS has clustered symptoms, while PMT is more individual experiences.

Can PMS symptoms stop before the period?

PMS is a cluster of symptoms that begin two weeks before your period starts, and yes, it will stop by the time your period starts. As the name suggests, these are symptoms that happen before your period, so when your period does come, the symptoms will end there, but it can be similar to the signs of early pregnancy.


What helps with anxiety and PMS?

What you can do is try and do a few relaxation techniques that can help in reducing your stress, which will, in turn, help you control your PMS and your anxiety. You can also try to do a few physical activities that give you exercise and movement, or you can also do meditation and yoga to keep you calm and relaxed.

What PMS feels like?

It can be a unique experience for different women. You may feel a variety of PMS signs and symptoms that other women do not. The most common experience is food cravings, emotional irritability, fatigue, and body pains. Again, this can be different for different people, so you do not have to worry if you feel it a little different from others. This should not be something that will cause you to stop living life as normal. So make sure that you are not stuck in bed all day because of it.

Is PMS a mental illness?

Regular PMS is not considered to be a mental illness; however, once it reaches a point of severity that it now becomes PMDD, this becomes a whole new story. PMDD is a disorder that affects women before their periods. They will feel depressed and even suicidal at times before their periods, which is now a hindrance to their normal living, becoming a disability. 


Final Thoughts

Some people outside of my circle would ask me, “Is it necessary to talk to a mental health professional about your PMS and depression?” I would always say yes. The answer would always be yes. That’s because depression is a serious matter that should not be set aside or taken for granted just because it was merely a side effect of another condition. Over time, if we leave it untreated, it could significantly impact us than the actual illness.


Looking After Your Mental Health In A Time Of Pandemic


Our world is currently facing a global health emergency. As the virus spreads, country leaders and health officials race to contain the situation by implementing various protocols. From limiting travel, closing down establishments including offices and schools, and enforcing social distancing, our lives were abruptly turned upside down.

We suddenly find ourselves in isolation and disengaged from society. This is enough to put anyone’s mental health into turmoil. Together with following these quarantine protocols, it is also essential that we do not forget to take care of our mental health.

The Pandemic And Our Mental Health

The pandemic disrupted many aspects of our society. The protocols put in place to protect us from COVID-19 can affect our mental health negatively. Our daily lives were disrupted. Additionally, the pandemic also gave rise to other issues, such as fearing for our family’s safety and economic concerns.


Assimilating into this new routine alongside processing the whole situation can be mentally exhausting. The uncertainty and confusion can result in anxiety.

We can also become prone to loneliness as we follow self-isolation protocols. All of these can cause increased stress and anxiety, which can manifest through sleeping problems, irritability, unhealthy eating habits, as well as substance abuse.

Managing all of these at the same time can be distressing. Although the impact of this pandemic can vary from person to person, everyone must keep our mental health in check. By keeping an eye out for our and our loved ones’ mental health, we can help ensure that we adjust to our new lives in pandemic successfully.

Caring For Your Mental Health Amidst The Pandemic

Although many of us may have already experienced stress and anxiety before the pandemic, its effect on our mental health can be stronger during this time. We can be especially vulnerable as our usual coping mechanisms – such as doing our sports and hobbies and hanging out with friends and family – may be currently inaccessible.

Given this, we enumerated ways on how you can care for yourself during these trying times.

  • Establish A New Routine

The sudden disruption of our regular routines can significantly contribute to our stress and anxiety. The lack of structure can result in a disorganized life and state of mind. Establishing a new routine can help bring normalcy and structure back to your life. It can also help set a schedule for your activities, ensuring a proper balance between rest and work.

  • Stay Active And Exercise

Exercising can help relieve stress. It is a natural way to release endorphins, which can improve our overall mood. Despite stay-at-home protocols, try to move around as much as you can. Explore home workouts, or take a walk or jog outside if allowed.


  • Limit Exposure To News

Keeping updated with the latest news is crucial. However, constant exposure to it can aggravate negative thoughts, such as fear and anxiety. Your mind needs to take a break, as well. Decrease your news exposure, including those that you see on social media. You can give yourself a schedule of when you’ll check for updates.

Likewise, remember to get your news from reputable and trustworthy sources.

  • Allot Time For Leisure And Relaxation

Being confined into our homes can give us an illusion that we are always “resting.” However, idle time can be different from leisure time or relaxation time. Explore new ways to have fun and relax, such as discovering new hobbies and exploring new movies or games. You can also try to find new ways to relax, such as through meditation.

  • Connect With Loved Ones

Quarantine life does not mean total isolation. Even though mass gatherings are prohibited and going out is discouraged, we can still connect with our friends and family through technology. Getting updates from them and seeing they are in good condition can help put both your and their minds at peace.


Resilience And Moving Forward

It is understandable not to feel like our usual selves during this pandemic. The situation we are all in and how we are forced to deal with it can be overwhelming.

Dr. Konstantinos Petsanis, MD, Ph.D., validates this. According to him, “Just the fact of someone wondering if he is positive for COVID is like having a stigma and something that is threatening his life… and that affects, of course, his behavior.”

This highlights the need for us to look after and take care of ourselves actively. Keeping your mental health in a sound state will help you be more able to deal with the changes around us. Staying healthy, whether mentally or physically, will help us adjust easier, effectively do our tasks, and support our loved ones.

Hey Mom! Taking Care Of Yourself Is How You Take Care Of Your Family


If you are a woman who has not gone to the salon for ages to have her hair or nails done, salute!

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Fashion Psychology Experts’ Pro Tip: Feel Free To Wear Trendy Pieces From The 90s Again

Hearing about fashion psychology for the first time tends to be an almost unbelievable experience for some people. After all, we have always known that the “classics” are the clothing pieces and accessories that can forever be useful in almost any style. A “fad,” on the other hand, is a type of fashion that is practically not here to stay. For this reason, a few individuals – especially the ones who love the 90s trends – cannot seem to figure out what items to wear without looking outdated.

Nonetheless, allow us to recommend a few stylish pieces that you can always add to your clothing ensemble on different occasions.



1. Boots

These are famous footwear back in the day when Justin Bieber and the One Direction are only beginning to wobble. The boots have been put way back in the stands when everyone else has grown up, and the ballet shoes and killer heels have become more appropriate for their line of work. The reason is that the last two mentioned are considerably much lighter than the former, and you can get them in various styles.

Be that as it may, it should not stop you from recreating some of your favorite getups in the 1990s that involve boots. If you are bar hopping with your friends, for instance, ease up on your boots and jacket to look like the biker girl you used to be or once dreamed of becoming. If you will be attending a semi-formal gathering that only requires you to be in a dress, do not hesitate to replace your pumps or stilettos with ankle- or knee-length boots, and remind people your age of how great those years have been for all of you, fashion-wise.

2. Faux Leather Pants

The faux leather is another relevant material used to make those pants that are too difficult to fit in. They look quite remarkable once they are on, so you immediately forget the hardship you have been through and keep on posing in front of the mirror to admire how the faux leather emphasizes your goods. Once again, due to a shift in fashion trends, people rarely wear the pants that they have fallen for in the 90s even when grunge is still viewed as the most epic way to promote self-expression.



However, it won’t hurt your social image when, even for one night, you embrace the faux leather pants and flaunt them in public. These body-hugging pants can accentuate your figure and make you sexier. It is tough to accomplish when you have to don straight-cut jeans and slacks, which mostly aim to hide your beautiful curves.

3. Irregular Tops

The wearers of grunge are like the rebels of fashion because the colors generally utilized are strictly black and white. Only the hair can be bubblegum pink or shocking blue, but the clothes can be cut in any way that you like. Specifically, with your tops, you want them to be diverse from the “normal.” If the typical shirts have short sleeves and snug fit, you can cut off the sleeves or sever the ends vertically to make them seem scruffier. In case you want to recycle a maxi dress, cut it diagonally in such a way that one side is at the same level as your abdomen, and the other goes down to cover half of your leg.

The rule of having your outfit neatly tucked and symmetric in all aspects is merely applied to individual styles. There is no need to worry about such things when you are going for the grunge.



4. Thigh-High Stockings

The grunge look can also consist of thigh-high stockings, which you can wear when you are in short dresses or plaid skirts. These stockings are quite different from the pantyhose that are more modest in appearance. They may have designs on them and are best paired with black boots.

When you were born outside of this period, and you wish you could have been there to try that kind of fashion that can now mostly be seen in cosplayers, there is still something you can do. The day before you party or attend a rock concert with your best friends, ascertain that you have such stockings. After that, put on the most basic black dress from your closet. The one with straps is fine in case you know that it will be too hot in the venue, yet the thigh-highs will become effortlessly highlighted when you settle for the long sleeves with small to zero details.

In The End

There is no law at the time of writing this blog that forces anyone to embrace new trends or prevents people from bringing back old styles. In truth, the fashion world is so fluid that the great looks in the 90s or older tend to surface even in the 21st century and get appreciated by the current generation. That should encourage you to start adding the fashion pieces mentioned above in your contemporary style now. Good luck!

Getting Rid Of Anxiety From Breakups

Relationships bring both joy and depression. When we are enjoying our time with our romantic partner, our world appears to be very colorful. But when couples argue, those blissful moments quickly turn into sorrow. Other times, it leaves both individuals with a feeling of anger. Fighting is healthy for a relationship since it builds trust and a better understanding of your partner. However, too much may lead you into a toxic relationship which may bring you anxiety. “Anxiety is a reaction to a situation we perceive as stressful or dangerous,” Monique Reynolds, Ph.D., licensed clinical psychologist.

It is unfortunate, but not all relationships last. It’s always hard to let go of someone you’ve spent a lot of time and effort. As hard as it is, sometimes, it turns out to be the best decision. Breaking up is not easy, and often, it leaves you with anxiety.


Breaking Up Versus Staying

There is a fine line between hanging onto a relationship and breaking up. If being together is becoming toxic, you should consider breaking up. Staying may only end up breaking you or your partner. To give you some advice, here are four signs to consider.


  • You Stay In The Blissful Past

You always end up thinking of the past, those times when you were both so happy. Nothing is changing, and maybe your relationship is getting worse. You are only holding onto it believing in a better future. You hope things will someday go back to how they were when you two first met each other.

However, you should consider living in the present. You need to see how both of you are at the moment. Don’t hold on to memories; make new ones.

  • You Feel Drained

After a long day at work, do you still feel that sense of joy when you see your partner? Do you still feel excited to see them again when they come home? You end up feeling scared thinking once you see each other; you’ll only pick up where you left your argument off last night. No matter how many times you fix your misunderstandings, it will always lead back to that. Instead of them making your worries go away, they only end up bringing more to you.

  • Bitterness Remains

When couples argue, they usually say things they don’t mean. They end up bursting with emotions and full of anger and resentment. Sometimes, these words or actions leave a scar. Next time you end up arguing, maybe you’d only go back to your previous fights. It leaves you both pulling each other down instead of lifting each other.

  • You’re Lying To Yourself

You start turning a blind eye to the negative sides of your partner. You believe things will get better when you know deep inside that it won’t. You only end up telling yourself you’re ok when, in truth, you aren’t. Always consider what your mind tells you. Sometimes, it’s not always about how you feel but what you know.

We Broke Up

Yes, breaking up is not easy. It leaves you with pain, depression, fear, and loneliness. However, one of the worst things it can leave you is anxiety. This anxiety can leave you with a sinking sense of restlessness and uncontrollable feelings of worry.

You also start having difficulties in sleeping and concentrating. It also leaves you very irritable of your surroundings. Here are three of the most effective ways to get over it.


  • Reflect On Yourself

During these times, you’d have to get back to yourself. Don’t feel lonely; you have friends and family who are there for you. You should start exercising, set up a healthy diet, or groom yourself. Always remember a healthy body leads to a healthy soul. “Deep diaphragmatic breathing is a powerful anxiety-reducing technique because it activates the body’s relaxation response. It helps the body go from the fight-or-flight response of the sympathetic nervous system to the relaxed response of the parasympathetic nervous system,” said Marla W. Deibler, PsyD

  • Look Ahead

Think of where you’ll head next. Maybe this is the chance for you to do things you weren’t able to do when you were in a relationship. Set goals to get you right back on track. Keep yourself busy with these goals. Don’t look back and dash through the future.

  • Time And Acceptance

It is probably the most effective solution to breakups. Time does heal; it’s okay to cry, to shout, or to get angry. These are all just a step leading to acceptance. When you’re there at the top accepting everything that happened, you start to recover truly. “When people are anxious, they are usually obsessing about something that might occur in the future,” Tom Corboy, MFT said. “Instead, pause, breathe and pay attention to what’s happening right now,” he said. “Even if something serious is happening, focusing on the present moment will improve your ability to manage the situation,” he added.

Staying in a toxic relationship and breaking up may bring anxiety. The only difference between the two is it is easier to recover when you start anew. Always consider yourself above everything; staying may bring more worries than leaving.

Ways To Pull Your Partner Up From Crippling Anxiety

Because your partner deserves all the love, understanding, and support, you can give. As this , concurs.

Anxiety, worry, and stress are all a part of most people’s everyday lives. But simply experiencing anxiety or stress in and of itself does not mean you need to get professional help or that you have an anxiety disorder.John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Under no circumstance is severe anxiety a positive thing. The constant panic attacks and moments living in perpetual fear are debilitating. Not only is the person affected but the effects extend to the members of the family, friends, and significant others.


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Mental Illness Ruining Relationships – Chatbots To The Rescue


Chatbots are robots powered by artificial intelligence whom we sometimes talk with when we call a number for customer assistance.  They’ve been used by some businesses for their customer service to answer queries from clients, record complaints, and take note of some requests.   The healthcare industry is now starting to use chatbots to assist doctors and access records of patients.   Some psychotherapists manage their patients utilizing chatbots, especially for talk therapy.

“Therapy gives you permission to allow you to feel the pain and know that it’s valid.” –Carmen Gehrke, LMHC

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