by Kanchan Sharma on January 26, 2022

Periods are not the problem, and period problems are more common than we imagine. But our menstrual cycles are often accompanied by signs and symptoms that tell us a lot about our physical health. Periods are an actuality of every woman's life. So when women experience any abnormal symptoms related to their periods, it can be linked to their internal health.

It is important to note that normal or abnormal period problems may not be the same for every woman. For example, irregular periods usually occur with PCOD, but it can be odd in any other scenario. Similarly, symptoms of Premenstrual Syndrome must not be confused with the problems related to periods. 

What Are The Most Common Period Problems?

Menstrual pain

Most women experience pain in the lower abdomen or pelvic area during the menstrual cycle. This pain is known as dysmenorrhea and is the most common period problem. Some women endure painful periods due to severe cramps, but these cramps can be eased by natural treatments or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs known as NSAIDs. Aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen can aid in controlling painful periods and also lessen heavy menstrual bleeding. Always consult your doctor before starting any medication.

Heavy bleeding

One in every 5 American women faces the problem of heavy bleeding during periods. Some women cannot even complete their mundane chores due to the same. Heavy bleeding is often caused by hormonal imbalance, problems with the uterine lining, thyroid, obesity, etc. It can be treated with medication as prescribed by the gynecologist.

Menstrual Migraine

Migraine is a painful and severe headache, and every 4 out of 10 women experience it regularly. Nearly 50% of these women complain that they experience migraine during their periods. Migraines can be triggered by stress, anxiety, bright lights, etc. It is also a known fact that hormones that control the menstrual cycle affect headache-related chemicals brain.

Missed Periods

Many women tend to miss their period before menopause, also known as amenorrhea. Amenorrhea is caused when ovaries stop making normal amounts of the hormone estrogen. Now, this is completely normal if a woman is pregnant or breastfeeding. Women also often miss their period due to eating disorders, stress, hormonal problem, or obesity.

Stomach Problems before periods

Many women often complain about various stomach problems before periods, like gastrointestinal issues, diarrhea, constipation, and bloating. The fluctuation of hormones estrogen and progesterone causes a majority of these problems. Most of these problems can be cured by mild medication, exercise, and a proper diet.

Irregular periods

When women experience a shorter or longer menstrual cycle than average, their period is considered irregular. It is normal for menstrual cycle length to vary slightly every month, especially if a woman is breastfeeding, approaching menopause, or going through puberty. Many external factors like diet change, work stress, or increased physical activities can also result in an irregular menstrual cycle.

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What causes irregular periods?

Irregular periods are called oligomenorrhea and can occur due to many reasons. Multiple hormones like estrogen, progesterone, and follicle-stimulating hormones are responsible for regulating the menstrual cycle. When the levels of these hormones alter, it can lead to irregular periods. Along with this, hormonal birth control, stress, weight loss, eating disorders, thyroid, hormonal imbalance, PCOS, PID, obesity, etc., also contributes to irregular periods. Occasional irregular periods are common and usually not a cause for concern. However, more persisting irregularities may be an indication of an underlying condition.

Effects of irregular periods on the body

Irregular periods are often accompanied by many side effects which have a huge impact on the human body. These side effects include heavy bleeding, intense cramps, blood clots, nausea, or bleeding after sexual intercourse. All these things cause fatigue and exhaustion. Sometimes irregular periods cause skin problems like acne and excess body hair due to hormonal imbalance. Irregular periods often affect the sleep cycle and can cause anemia due to high iron loss.

What can cause longer periods?

When menstrual periods last for more than seven days they come under the category of longer periods and are also called menorrhagia. Longer periods are often caused by hormone irregularities, uterine abnormalities, or cancer. It often causes discomfort and disrupts ordinary activities. One should visit a doctor to rule out any possibility of any dangerous medical diseases if experiencing these symptoms.

What doctor should I see for period problems?

Women should see a gynecologist for problems related to their periods to receive the best treatment and advice. Women often ignore their reproductive health and the indications their body aims to give them through their period. Women of all age groups should visit a gynecologist to rule out the possibility of any disease that might affect them adversely.

Period problems have become more common than ever, hence it is extremely crucial, now more than ever, for women to take care of their reproductive health and prioritize it.