Blackburn’s Helen Flanagan has opened up about the health concerns which made her feel “awful and depressed”.

The former Westholme School Pupil appeared on the Full of Grace podcast, hosted by womb and menstrual cycle awareness educator, Grace Prosser.

Helen opened up about her struggles with her menstrual cycle and says the week before her period is “absolutely horrendous”.

She said: “I’ve always struggled with my menstrual cycle. The week before my bleed I couldn’t cope, feeling so awful and depressed.

“It would be such a relief when my period starts because I knew I would ‘have my head back’."

Helen said her premenstrual syndrome (PMS) impacted her family life.

She said: “It was almost like I was on top form for two weeks and then the other two weeks I would feel so low and down.

“I always used to say to my ex ‘don’t speak to me. I can’t cope’.

“It’s so hard when you’re hormonal with children. We once left something in the shop and I really shouted at [my daughter] Matilda and I felt so guilty.

Helen said she tried to take an oral contraceptive to cope with symptoms but she said it made her feel “terrible”.

She said education from Grace and learning to understand her cycle, has helped.

She said: “I felt like I had no choice [but to get help] because my hormones were so bad and I had a terrible experience with the pill so this was my only choice.

“My mood swings were not normal. I thought contraception was going to fix me but it actually made me feel terrible.

“When I took contraception I didn’t think anything natural could help me. My PMS is the worst and thought ‘no-one can help me? How can anything natural help?’

“It really has changed my life and made me realise why I was struggling so much. It has helped me deal with things from past relationships. It’s helped me deal with my mental health.

“If women can resonate with that then this might be able to help them.”

Commenting on the episode, Grace said: “We put our hearts and souls into this and we are really excited to release the first episode.

"Our intention with this episode is to help as many women as we possibly can to feel seen, heard, understood and not alone.

“In this episode, we delve into Helen’s personal life experiences and discuss the importance of mental health, the menstrual cycle, hormones and emotions.

“We talk about Helen’s six week feminine healing and empowerment journey of cycle syncing with me as her friend and mentor!

“I feel very blessed to have helped you on your journey…I also thank you Helen for being courageous enough to have these conversations.”

You can listen to the entire Full of Grace episode on various podcast platforms.