Is It Depression or Just PMS?

Published: August 29, 2018
Dear TeenHealthFX,

I feel depressed sometimes and don't kow if it's just PMS or if I should go to therapy? help? Plz answer this question thxs teenhealthfx

Signed: Is It Depression or Just PMS?

Dear Is It Depression or Just PMS?,

TeenHealthFX would like to begin by stating that it is natural to feel sad or discouraged at times. Depression, however is defined by TeensHealth as, “more than occasionally feeling blue, sad, or down in the dumps, though. Depression is a strong mood involving sadness, discouragement, despair, or hopelessness that lasts for weeks, months, or even longer.” Signs of depression include, yet are not limited to:

  • Negative feelings and mood
  • Negative thinking
  • Low energy and motivation
  • Poor concentration
  • Physical problems
  • Social withdrawing


TeensHealth suggests the following coping strategies to reduce depression symptoms:

  • Exercise.
  • Nurture yourself with good nutrition.
  • Identify troubles, but don’t dwell on them.
  • Express yourself.
  • Try to notice good things.


Further, premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is the term for the physical and emotional symptoms that many girls and women get right before their periods begin each month. If you have PMS, you might experience the following emotional symptoms:

  • Being very tired
  • Food cravings
  • Depression or feeling blue
  • Irritability
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Problems handling stress
  • Feeling tense
  • Trouble sleeping


TeenHealthFX suggests reaching out to a trusted adult. You can speak with your parents, school guidance counselor, nurse or teacher. Your trusted adult of choice can help refer you to a certified mental health professional.

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

FX suggests the following resources for additional information:

Signed: TeenHealthFX