Mindful Menstruation: Ignoring These Common Period Issues May Hamper Your Fertility
There are several common issues related menstruation that many women face. Here's why you should not ignore these.
PCOS is one of the common issues faced by women these day
- Abnormal flow during menstruation needs medical attention
- PCOS is one of the common issues that leads to infertility
- If you experience irregular period check with your doctor
For many women, bleeding profusely every month can be a total nuisance. But, the surprising fact is that many women don't realize that periods are actually a parameter to gauge fertility - helping you to track your cycles, learning the time when you will be maximum fertile besides providing clues as to your chances of getting pregnant.
Experts believe that a periods' duration, intensity of the flow and how regular you get the flow are controlled by the hormones in your body. These hormones also regulate the cycle, enabling women to get pregnant and maintain a healthy pregnancy. When your body experiences hormone imbalances due to underlying medical conditions, stress, or extreme changes in diet, then the menstrual cycle goes haywire.
Here, we've highlighted several common situations women face when it comes to the menstrual cycle so that they know when to consult a doctor about how their periods could be affecting their chances to conceive.
Do not ignore these issues related to your menstruation cycle
1. Missed periods
Missing your periods become crucial when you are trying to conceive. However, if pregnancy isn't on your mind then missing periods could be worrisome. This is the time when you should see the doctor to get into the bottom of the issue. Irregular cycle can be detrimental for your fertility: first, it'll be much harder to pinpoint those key ovulation dates where getting pregnant is most likely. Secondly, repeatedly missing periods often indicates underlying issues that can affect your fertility; some are serious, while others are relatively simple to solve. PCOS is one of the major reasons behind missing your periods or irregular periods. The other causes could be hypothyroidism, zinc deficiency, extreme dieting or weight loss, or very intense exercise.
2. Abnormal Flow
If you're not getting a negative pregnancy test month after month despite a relatively predictable cycle length, your flow could provide a hint as to the cause. Abnormally heavy or light periods can sometimes mean there are issues that need to be solved before conception can occur. Having unusually heavy periods may not seem like something that could affect your fertility, especially if your period is still regular. In reality though, it's not normal to have super heavy periods every month. Most of the underlying causes of very heavy periods are things like uterine fibroids or polyps, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, or a hormone imbalance that also lead to an inability to get pregnant or sustain a healthy pregnancy. Your menstrual flow is heavy if you're:
- You bleed through a pad or tampon in less than an hour
- You fully soak more than 5 pads a day
- You need to change pads even during night
- You pass lots of clots with the flow, although some amount of clot is okay
- You suffer from dizziness, fainting, anemia or shortness of breath during your period
- In extreme case you bleed so heavily that you require a blood transfusion
Whereas, if you always have a light period then there is nothing to worry about. This certainly shouldn't affect your chances of getting pregnant. But, if you're scanty flow is a sudden change that can't be explained by increased stress or dramatic weight loss, you may want to look into what's causing such a light period. One of the biggest underlying medical issues when it comes to what causes a light period is polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS, a condition where women produce higher than average male hormones. But the good news is, proper medical treatment to help keep hormones on track makes it possible for PCOS sufferers to have a healthy pregnancy and carry a baby to term.
Spotting usually occurs when a hormone named progesterone levels are too low to keep the endometrium in place. Or alternatively, if estrogen(another female hormone), levels are too high. You need to see the doctor immediately and after getting the hormone test done, the doctor can determine on the spot and what type of treatment you might need to increase your chances of seeing that positive pregnancy test you've been waiting for.
(Dr. Nidhi Jha is a Fertility Consultant at Southend Nova IVF Fertility)
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