Generally, every woman experiences menstrual periods after every 28 days and it typically lasts for 4 to days. However, some women may experience delay or early onset of their periods every month along with extreme pain in their abdomen. These menstrual disorders can impact the overall well-being of a woman. While some of these symptoms may be just normal but it is necessary to get yourself checked to rule out the possibility of some major diseases. At times, these signs may indicate the development of certain diseases and can damage female genital organs too. That is why it is essential to have in-depth knowledge regarding such issues so that you can take the required steps and keep yourself away from pain.
Causes of Menstrual Disorders
Widely speaking, menstrual disorders may have numerous causes and they emerge due to disruptions in the hormones that control the periods. Some common causes are:
- Imbalance in the hormones: Women may experience fluctuations in their hormones, especially estrogen due to reasons such as stress, fatigue, changes in eating habits, weight gain/loss, etc. Due to this, irregular periods may occur.
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): This is a condition where there is too much production of androgens in women. PCOS can cause irregular menstrual cycles and may also lead to the development of other symptoms.
- Thyroid: Various types of thyroids or other pituitary gland disorders can affect the production of hormones in the body and make your periods irregular.
- Endometriosis: In this condition, tissues grow outside the uterus leading to abnormal bleeding, cramps, etc.
- Pelvic Inflammatory Disease: It is a kind of bacterial infection that affects the reproductive health of women and is generally caused due to sexually transmitted diseases. This infection may spread to the uterus and cause heavy vaginal bleeding, irregular periods, etc.
- Bleeding Disorders: Heavy menstrual flow can also occur due to bleeding disorders.
- Uterine Cancer: Cancerous cells can cause irregular periods, missed periods, heavier periods, etc.
- Birth Control Pills: Taking or suddenly stopping these pills affects your menstruation where you may experience heavier blood flow, miss your periods, etc.
- Medications: Blood thinners, steroids, etc. can affect the production of hormones in the body and lead to menstrual disorders.
- Change in diet: If you suddenly begin to eat something that your body isn’t used to or you lose weight or gain weight, you may experience menstrual irregularities.
- Excessive Exercise: It can increase the amount of menstruation and prolong your periods.
Complications of Menstrual Disorders
- Anemia: When you experience heavy blood flow, it can lead to anemia, dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath, etc.
- Affect your daily life: Heavy blood flow and irregular periods may interfere with your plans and disturb your day-to-day activities.
- Vaginitis: Prolonged menstrual cycles can create a favorable environment for the growth of bacteria and can cause inflammatory diseases in the private areas.
- Risk of infertility: Irregular ovulation can make your chances of getting pregnant very less as the infection may block the fallopian tube.
Diagnosis of Menstrual Disorders
You can begin by keeping track of your irregular periods, noting down the symptoms and observing the color of the blood. This information may help your healthcare provider to understand your cause in a better way and provide accurate treatment as per need.
Diagnosis generally begins when your healthcare provider starts asking questions related to your symptoms, medical history, etc. Physical examination may also be conducted along with tests such as:
- Pelvic Ultrasound: It can help detect irregular bleeding caused due to uterine fibroids, polyps, etc.
- Endometrial biopsy: Here, a sample of your tissue is taken and analyzed for hormonal imbalance reasons.
- Hysteroscopy: In this procedure, your healthcare provider will look inside your uterus to understand the cause of abnormal bleeding.
Tips to Manage Menstrual Disorders
These menstrual disorders are quite common among women but it is essential that necessary steps are taken to control and cure the condition. Some simple suggestions to help ease the symptoms and treat the cause have been given below:
- Keep a check on your diet, sleep and exercise: Take a nutritious diet and make sure that eat properly. Moreover, you should ensure to sleep for 7-8 hours every night. Along with this, engage yourself in some physical activity.
- Practice relaxation techniques: Stay away from negativity, loud environment, etc. Do pranayama, meditation and yoga.
- Limit alcohol, tobacco, etc.: It will not only affect your menstrual cycles but also make your skin look dull and dry.
- Use heating pads, hot water bottles, etc. to ease the symptoms
Treatment of Menstrual Disorders
Medications and some surgical procedures are used to treat menstrual disorders. Some of these methods/medications have been given below:
Hormonal Birth Control: This may help manage your medical condition and regulate your menstrual cycle. The healthcare provider may use pills, vaginal rings, injections, etc. depending on your symptom and cause.
Tranexamic Acid: It is a medication that is used to treat heavy blood flow during periods.
Pain relievers: Many symptoms of menstrual disorders can be managed with the help of some pain relievers.
Hormone Therapy: This method is used when your period is caused due perimenopause. It also treats vaginal dryness and hot flashes.
Endometrial Ablation: Here, heat and cold energy are used to destroy the tissue affecting your menstrual cycle.
Myomectomy: In this process, fibroids are removed to stop irregular bleeding.
Hysterectomy: In very extreme cases, it might be necessary to remove excess tissue growing in your pelvic region.
Women who get regular periods generally have healthy reproductive parts. However, if you experience signs and symptoms of menstrual disorders, get in touch with a gynecologist at the earliest.
This blog has been written after performing in-depth secondary research related to the topic from various articles, blogs, and journals with expertise in writing for healthcare. The content on this page should not be considered a substitute for medical expertise.