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Perimenopause periods: Key symptoms and management

The pattern of a person’s menstrual periods changes during perimenopause. Cycles can become longer or shorter, and sometimes, people may skip periods altogether.

The lead-up to menopause is called perimenopause. Changing hormone levels during this time can alter the frequency, symptoms, and regularity of a person’s periods.

Each person’s experience of perimenopause is different, and changes to the menstrual cycle vary between individuals.

When people are approaching menopause, hormonal shifts cause their bodies to ovulate less frequently. When the ovary does not release an egg, the uterus lining does not shed, and the person does not have a period.

The most common shift in the menstrual cycle is that a person begins to have fewer monthly periods.

Because ovulation is not occurring cyclically during perimenopause, the body produces smaller amounts of a hormone called progesterone. This can cause the lining of the uterus to build up for longer than usual, which makes periods less frequent and heavier.

Because of these hormonal fluctuations, people may notice the following changes in their periods during perimenopause:

  • Less frequent periods. This occurs because people are ovulating less often.
  • Longer, heavier periods. This happens because the lining of the uterus has time to grow thicker and takes longer to shed.
  • Lighter periods. People may experience lighter periods when their estrogen levels are low. This is because estrogen increases the thickness of the uterus lining.
  • Irregular periods. People may have irregular periods, spotting between periods, or both, when the uterus lining grows thicker than usual.
  • Changing menstrual symptoms. People may also notice an increase or decrease in their menstrual cramps and other symptoms.

The time between monthly periods can also vary greatly. Some people’s periods may change unpredictably from month to month. For example, their period may be heavy one month and absent the next.

In general, people experience lighter and less frequent periods as they go through perimenopause. If someone experiences, longer, heavier, and more frequent periods they should see their doctor to discuss possible reasons for this.

Over time, perimenopause will cause a person’s periods to become less frequent and eventually to stop altogether. Typically, doctors consider the transition into menopause as complete when an individual has gone 1 year without a period.

After 1 year, people should talk to their doctor about any vaginal bleeding.

If people notice that their menstrual symptoms are becoming more uncomfortable during perimenopause, they can try:

  • taking over-the-counter pain relievers or specific medicines for period symptoms
  • exercising to reduce bloating and help with cramps
  • practicing meditation to help relieve stress, pain, or mood swings
  • applying heat to the back or stomach to help with cramps and muscle pain

People who experience irregular or painful periods might find relief from using hormonal birth control.

Many people report other symptoms during perimenopause, including mood swings, hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and exhaustion. Doctors often prescribe hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to help manage these symptoms.

Hormones can help with many symptoms, but people should note that they can carry health risks, including an increased risk of:

The risk is usually small and depends on the person’s overall health and the specific treatment used. So, always discuss the benefits and risks with a doctor.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists noted that certain herbs, including soy and black cohosh, may help with some perimenopause symptoms. Always talk to a doctor before trying new remedies, including these supplements, which are available over-the-counter.

Some people believe that soy helps perimenopause symptoms because it mimics estrogen.

According to a 2017 study, eating a diet rich in soy products may help people regulate their hormones. The researchers found that certain soy supplements can reduce the number of menopause symptoms a person experiences.

Because most people still have periods during perimenopause, it is still possible to get pregnant during this time. Those who already use hormonal birth control should continue taking it if they want to avoid pregnancy.

Some dietary changes can help a person stay healthy during this transition.

Diet tips include:

  • Eating a varied, nutritious, and healthful diet. Many people find that their metabolism slows down during this stage of life, causing more weight gain than usual.
  • Including calcium and vitamin D in the diet to prevent osteoporosis and broken bones. Dairy products and dark leafy greens are rich in these nutrients. Some people also choose to take a supplement.
  • Drinking plenty of water to avoid dehydration. This may also help with dry skin and vaginal dryness.

The regular monthly period is not the only reason why people may bleed.

Because a person’s periods are often irregular during perimenopause, they should pay extra attention for any abnormal symptoms — particularly as some uterus-related conditions are more common during and after perimenopause.

People may bleed because of:

  • Endometrial atrophy. Low estrogen in perimenopause and menopause can cause the tissue of the uterus to get very thin, which can cause irregular bleeding.
  • Uterine polyps. These are benign growths that can grow inside the uterus and cervix. Polyps do not always cause symptoms, but some people notice bleeding after sex.
  • Endometrial hyperplasia. Hormonal shifts can cause the lining of the uterus to thicken in perimenopause. When the body has too much estrogen without enough progesterone, this thickness may cause bleeding. Bleeding is its most common symptom. Endometrial hyperplasia is treatable but can increase a person’s risk of cancer.
  • Uterine Cancer. Uterine cancer happens when abnormal or atypical cells progress into cancer. Though rare, it generally presents with heavy bleeding or postmenopausal bleeding.

Perimenopause is not a disease and does not require treatment. It can, however, increase people’s risk of developing certain diseases. Moreover, the menstrual cycle can change for reasons other than perimenopause.

Anyone experiencing changes in their menstrual cycle should see a doctor for a diagnosis.

People going through perimenopause should see a doctor if:

  • they experience side effects associated with hormone treatments
  • they bleed after 1 year without a period
  • they experience bleeding that is very heavy, very painful, or that soaks through more than a pad or tampon an hour
  • hormone therapy stops helping with perimenopause symptoms
  • they experience pain or bleeding during or after sex

The transition to menopause is different for everyone, both physically and psychologically.

People should discuss their symptoms with a healthcare provider they trust.

Support from loved ones, support groups, or a therapist can help with the emotional side effects of perimenopause.

Though dealing with the changes can be difficult, this new stage in life can be a time of growth and reflection that offers new purpose and meaning.

Causes, symptoms, treatment, and types

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Fibroids in the uterus are tumors that develop in or on the walls of the uterus. They are common and not typically cancerous.

Fibroids in the uterus, or uterine fibroids, are the most common noncancerous, or benign, tumors in people of childbearing age. They are also known as leiomyomas and myomas.

Many people have fibroids with no symptoms, whereas others experience pain, bleeding, or both.

This article provides an overview of fibroids, including their types, effects on the body, causes, and treatment options.

Uterine fibroids are growths in or on the walls of the uterus. They consist of smooth muscle cells and connective tissue.

A person may have one or multiple fibroids. They can be as small as an apple seed or as big as a grapefruit (or sometimes even larger than that). They can also shrink or grow over time.

Fibroids are more common from age 30 to the age at which menopause begins. They usually shrink after menopause. Between 20% and 80% of females develop fibroids by the age of 50, according to the Office on Women’s Health (OWH).

It is unclear exactly why they form, but they seem to develop when estrogen levels are higher.

Uterine fibroids are almost always noncancerous. The OWH also say that cancerous fibroids are rare, occurring in fewer than 1 in 1,000 cases. However, other sources suggest that they may be more common than this.

When a fibroid is cancerous, it is called a leiomyosarcoma.

Having preexisting fibroids do not increase the risk of developing a leiomyosarcoma.

The classification of a fibroid depends on its location in the uterus.

The three main types of fibroid are:

  • Subserosal fibroids: These are the most common type. They grow on the outside of the uterus.
  • Intramural fibroids: These grow inside the muscular wall of the uterus.
  • Submucosal fibroids: These grow into the open space inside the uterus.

Some fibroids can become pedunculated fibroids, which means that the fibroid has a stalk that attaches to the uterus.

Most fibroids do not cause any noticeable symptoms. However, some can cause significant discomfort.

The symptoms of uterine fibroids can include:

Some people may have fertility problems associated with fibroids. Fibroids may cause problems during pregnancy and labor, and they increase the chance of needing a cesarean delivery.

Some sources suggest that removing fibroids can improve the rates of conception and live births, though there has been some controversy around this. More research is necessary.

If fibroids are large, there may also be weight gain and swelling in the lower abdomen.

It remains unclear exactly what causes fibroids. Their development may be linked with the person’s estrogen levels.

During a person’s reproductive years, estrogen and progesterone levels are higher. When estrogen levels are high, especially during pregnancy, fibroids tend to swell.

Low estrogen levels are associated with the shrinkage of fibroids. This can occur during and after menopause. It can also occur when taking certain medications, such as gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonists or antagonists.

Genetic factors may also affect the development of fibroids. For example, having a close relative with fibroids is associated with an increased risk of developing them oneself.

There is also evidence to suggest that red meat, alcohol, and caffeine are associated with an increased risk of fibroids. An increased intake of fruit and vegetables may be linked with a reduced risk.

Overweight and obesity are associated with an increased risk of fibroids.

Childbearing is associated with a lower risk of developing fibroids. The risk reduces each time the person gives birth.

The following diagnostic tests can help a doctor detect fibroids and rule out other conditions:

  • Ultrasound scans: A doctor can create ultrasound images by scanning over the abdomen or by inserting a small ultrasound probe into the vagina. Both approaches may be necessary to detect fibroids.
  • MRI scans: An MRI scan can determine the size and number of fibroids.
  • Hysteroscopy: During a hysteroscopy, a doctor will use a small device with a camera attached to the end to examine the inside of the uterus. They will insert the device through the vagina and into the uterus via the cervix. If necessary, they may also take a tissue sample, known as a biopsy, to look for cancer cells.
  • Laparoscopy: A doctor might also perform a laparoscopy. They will insert a small, lighted tube into a small incision in the abdomen to examine the outside of the uterus and its surrounding structures. If necessary, they might also take a biopsy.

As fibroids often do not cause symptoms, a person may not know that they have fibroids until they undergo a routine pelvic examination.

Most fibroids do not cause symptoms and do not require treatment. In fact, they often shrink or disappear after menopause.

If fibroids are causing uncomfortable symptoms, however, various medical treatments can help.

A doctor may recommend different treatments depending on the symptoms, the severity of the symptoms, and the location of the fibroids.

Medication

The first line of treatment for fibroids is medication. The following sections will discuss some possible medications for fibroids in more detail.

GnRH agonists

A drug called a GnRH agonist causes the body to produce less estrogen and progesterone. This shrinks fibroids. GnRH agonists stop the menstrual cycle without affecting fertility after the end of treatment.

GnRH agonists can cause menopause-like symptoms, including hot flashes, a tendency to sweat more, vaginal dryness, and, in some cases, a higher risk of osteoporosis.

GnRH agonists are for short-term use only. A doctor may give a person these medications before surgery to shrink fibroids.

A newer therapy using GnRH antagonists is another possible treatment option.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, can reduce fibroid pain, but they do not reduce bleeding.

Ibuprofen is available to purchase online.

Hormonal birth control

Oral contraceptives help regulate the ovulation cycle, and they may help reduce the amount of pain or bleeding during periods. Low dose hormonal birth control does not make fibroids grow.

People can also use a progesterone intrauterine device, such as Mirena, or progesterone-like injections, such as Depo-Provera.

Surgery

Severe fibroids may not respond to more conservative treatment options. In these cases, surgery may be the best treatment option.

The doctor may consider the following procedures:

Hysterectomy

A hysterectomy is the partial or total removal of the uterus. This method can treat extremely large fibroids or excessive bleeding. Total hysterectomy can prevent the return of fibroids.

If a surgeon also removes the ovaries and fallopian tubes, side effects can include reduced libido and early menopause.

Myomectomy

This is the removal of fibroids from the muscular wall of the uterus. It can help people who still want to have children.

Those with large fibroids or fibroids located in particular parts of the uterus may not benefit from this type of surgery.

Clinicians can perform myomectomy through hysteroscopy or laparoscopy.

Endometrial ablation

Removing the uterine lining may help if fibroids are near the inner surface of the uterus. Endometrial ablation may be an effective alternative to a hysterectomy for some people with fibroids.

Uterine fibroid embolization

Cutting off the blood supply to the area shrinks the fibroid. Guided by fluoroscopic X-ray imaging, the doctor will inject a chemical through a catheter into the arteries supplying blood to any fibroids.

This procedure reduces or removes symptoms in up to 90% of people with fibroids, but it is not suitable during pregnancy or for those who may want to have children.

That said, the resolution of symptoms is highly variable depending on the location and size of fibroids. This is not an appropriate treatment method for all types of fibroid.

Lifestyle changes

Maintaining a moderate weight by getting regular exercise and eating a healthful diet may help moderate estrogen levels, which may help reduce fibroids.

Fibroids do not normally result in complications, but they can sometimes occur.

Consistently heavy periods may affect a person’s quality of life. Significant blood loss may also lead to anemia.

Large fibroids can lead to swelling and discomfort in the lower abdomen or cause constipation or painful bowel movements.

Some people might develop urinary tract infections as a result of fibroids.

Some people may also experience pregnancy problems. Preterm birth, labor problems, and pregnancy loss may occur, as estrogen levels rise significantly during pregnancy.

There is not enough evidence to conclude that myomas reduce the likelihood of becoming pregnant with or without fertility treatment.

That said, there is fair evidence to suggest that hysteroscopic myomectomy for submucosal fibroids improves clinical pregnancy rates.

Uterine fibroids are almost always benign. Cancerous fibroids, known as leiomyosarcomas, are rare. According to some sources, they occur in fewer than 1 in 1,000 cases.

Uterine fibroids are common growths that occur in the uterus. In most cases, they do not cause symptoms and do not require treatment.

If there are severe symptoms, various medical or surgical treatments can help relieve pain and discomfort.

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Menorrhagia: Symptoms, Causes, Treatments



Overview

What is menorrhagia?

Menorrhagia is a common disorder in women. Menorrhagia is the medical term for menstrual bleeding lasting for longer than 7 days. About 1 in every 20 women has menorrhagia.

Some of the bleeding can be very heavy, meaning you would change your tampon or pad after less than 2 hours. It can also mean you pass clots the size of a quarter or even larger.

Menorrhagia can lead to anemia if not treated. Also, the heavy bleeding can affect sleep, cause lower abdominal pain and make enjoyable activities a burden.

If you are experiencing weakness and a disruption to everyday life due to heavy bleeding, you should ask your doctor for treatment options.



Symptoms and Causes

What are the signs and symptoms of menorrhagia?

Signs of menorrhagia include:

  • Soaking 1 or more tampons or pads every hour for many consecutive hours
  • Doubling up on pads
  • Changing pads or tampons during the night
  • Long-lasting menstrual periods (longer than 7 days)
  • Blood clots the size of a quarter or larger
  • Bleeding that is keeping you from doing normal activities
  • Constant pain in lower part of stomach
  • Lacking energy
  • Shortness of breath

What causes menorrhagia?

Menorrhagia can be caused by uterine problems, hormone problems or other illnesses. Other causes include:

  • Growths or tumors of the uterus that are not cancer
  • Cancer of the cervix or uterus
  • Particular types of birth control
  • Pregnancy-related problems (miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, when the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus)
  • Bleeding disorders
  • Liver, kidney or thyroid disease
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (and infection of the female reproductive organs)
  • Taking certain drugs, such as aspirin
  • The menopause transition, also referred to as perimenopause
  • Childbirth
  • Fibroids or polyps in the lining or muscle of the womb



Diagnosis and Tests

How is menorrhagia diagnosed?

Menorrhagia is diagnosed by your doctor through a series of questions about your medical history and menstrual cycles. Usually for women with menorrhagia bleeding lasts for more than 7 days and more blood is lost (80 milliliters compared to 60 milliliters).

Your doctor may ask for information about:

  • Your age when you got your first period
  • Length of your menstrual cycle
  • Number of days your period lasts
  • Number of days your period is heavy
  • Quality of life during your period
  • Family members with a history of heavy menstrual bleeding
  • Stress you are facing
  • Weight problems
  • Current medications

Physical tests or exams done to diagnose menorrhagia may include:

  • Pelvic exam
  • Blood test to check thyroid, check for anemia and how the blood clots
  • Pap test to check cells from cervix for changes
  • Endometrial biopsy to check uterine tissue for cancer or abnormalities
  • Ultrasound to check function of blood vessels, tissues and organs

Sometimes additional tests are still required to understand the cause of bleeding, including:

  • Sonohysterogram to check for problems in the lining of the uterus
  • Hysteroscopy to check for polyps, fibroids or other problems
  • Dilation and curettage (“D&C”). This test can also treat the cause of the bleeding. During this test, the lining of the uterus is scraped and examined under sedation.



Management and Treatment

How is menorrhagia treated?

Treatment for menorrhagia depends on how serious the bleeding is, the cause of the bleeding, your health, age, and medical history. Also, treatment depends on your response to certain medicines and your wants and needs. You may not want to have a period at all, or just want to reduce the amount of bleeding. In addition, your decision to get pregnant or not will affect what treatment you choose. If you do not have anemia, you can choose to not have treatment.

Common treatments include:

  • Iron supplements to put more iron into your blood
  • Ibuprofen to reduce pain and amount of bleeding
  • Birth control to make periods more regular and reduce bleeding (pills, vaginal ring, patch)
  • Intrauterine contraception (IUD) to make periods more regular and reduce bleeding
  • Hormone therapy to reduce bleeding
  • Desmopressin nasal spray to stop bleeding for certain bleeding disorders
  • Antifibrinolytic medicines to reduce bleeding
  • Dilation and curettage to reduce bleeding by removing the top layer of uterus lining
  • Operative hysteroscopy to remove fibroids and polyps and remove lining of uterus
  • Endometrial ablation or resection to remove all or part of the lining of the uterus
  • Hysterectomy to surgically remove the uterus and you will stop having your period

How is menorrhagia managed?

To manage menorrhagia, some women stay home on days when they are bleeding heavily. Others leave the house if they know a bathroom will be nearby. Also, it is a good practice to keep pads and/or tampons in your purse or at work. Wearing dark pants or skirts can help if you are worried about stains on light-colored clothing. Additionally, you can use a waterproof sheet on your mattress to prevent stains.



Prevention

How is menorrhagia prevented?

Menorrhagia cannot be prevented. However, talking with your doctor to get diagnosed and treated can prevent other health issues in the future.



Outlook / Prognosis

What is the prognosis for living with menorrhagia?

If left untreated, menorrhagia can interfere with daily life. In addition, it can cause anemia and leave you feeling tired and weak. Other health problems can also arise if the bleeding problem is not resolved. With proper treatment and doctor assistance, menorrhagia can be managed and not cause a disruption to your life.



Living With

When do you call the doctor if you suspect menorrhagia?

You should call the doctor if you are passing clots the size of a quarter or larger. You should also call the doctor if you need to change your tampon or pad after less than 2 hours due to heavy bleeding.

Three weeks of heavy vaginal bleeding, very worried

Hi there, my situation is exactly the same as yours.  I am 40 years old when the symtoms started in 2018 April.  I went to private doctor who prescribed me hormone tablets to stop the bleeding, but I did not take it as other people said that hormone tablets are not good.  She also gave me a scan and found that I have an 4cm ovarian cysts but she said that the fluid is clear, so that is not a problem and it is not related to my heavy bleeding.  I went to A&E as I suffered severe blood loss and I had iron water transfusion.  I was in Hong Kong on holiday when I went to A&E, the doctor did extract cell from my womb (cannot remember the proper name for this procedure), however, now I am back to UK, I did not have a chance to see the report.  I actually think that my problem started dated back to three years ago, I had abnormal heavy period and uncomfortable pain on my left side.  I went to see my GP and had a scan, she just told me that the lining of the womb was thick.  But she cannot see any other problems.  Because my period returned to normal amount (but shorter cycle, from 28days to 25days), I did not followed up until last year, my period got out of hand.  The doctor in Hong Kong prescribed me Tranexamic acid too, but I have the same point of view as yours, I would like the bleeding to stop on its own, hence, I can find out the underlying problem.

Before I went to A&E (July) in Hong Kong, I went to GP (June) first.  She just gave me some swabs to do it at home and asked me to have blood tests.  She said that the procedure has changed.  She cannot refer me to have a scan until the tests for diseases.  I said that I thought she is the one to take the samples with the swabs, she said that it has changed too, it is now the patient to do it at home.  I never used a tampon before, in the end, I did not do it cos I found it scary to use the swabs.  And I suffered from severe blood loss, I did not go for a blood test neither.

I don’t know, I just feel helpless.  May I know the situation of yours now?  Maybe everything is alright, I am just going through early menopause? (which GP and doctor in HK said that I am not, but they did not tell me what the problem is) 

Brown discharge.

. stressy! | Cancer Chat

Hi everyone!

 

Been stressing out a lot recently and it’s taking it’s toll! I’ll apologise in advance for the long speil I’m away to write!

 

I’ll also start by saying I’m 100% not pregnant, and I have had smears done which came back fine. (Routine one in February 2019, and another one due to this situation). I’m a 27 year old female, 5’4 and weigh about 9-9.5 stone.

 

So it all started September last year (I think)

I was just away to leave the house and I got two really sharp pains in the left side of my abdomen, only lasted a few seconds each time but they felt really sharp. Anyway, I didn’t think much about it because I get completely fine before and after it so I went out as normal and a couple of hours later I went to pee and when I wiped I seen a pink blood. Strange because my period had been finished for about a week. Anyway, again I didn’t overthink it too much, thought it must just be a bit of extra period my body decided to spring on me.  

 

Since then, I had experienced very very light pinky/browny tinges on the toilet roll but only occasionally. I did start getting a bit worried so I went to the doctors in November who done a swab for STI’s and infections, so when I got my results they said i didn’t have any STIs however I had slight BV so was given a weeks course of anti-biotics… but the weird pink/brown discharge kept happening, most of the time about a 1.5 weeks after my period. Or at least that’s when I’d notice it..

I googled and googled (bad, I know) and it kept saying this was probably due to ovulation so I just kept putting it down to that, then I’d forget about it until I experienced it again which would then make me stress out again. This happened on loop until about July this year. I bit the bullet and tried the doctors again. They performed another physical examination and swab which came back clear however during the exam the Dr thought she maybe felt something but also said she wasn’t sure if it was just in my bowels. .lol. Anyways she organised an ultrasound for me incase it was fibroids, but they also said this looked normal (abdominal ultrasound only, they said they could see enough and didn’t need to do a transvaginal US)

So after this I decided to go Private to try get to the bottom of it. This doctor performed another physical exam and said she couldn’t feel or see anything wrong with my cervix and she prescribed me with a 3 month course of the contraceptive pill Microgynon incase it was hormonal, and she said we will re-assess in 3 months. I’m half way into my first month on the pill, started it on the first day of my period as instructed. My period has ended but I’ve had pretty constant brown discharge since, sometimes only tinges the toilet roll but sometimes there is dark brown stringy bits or some sort of really thin tissue lining??? Sorry i’m not sure what to call it (sorry for the TMI).

The doctor also said if I am still having issues then we would look into getting a Hysteroscopy done, but I reeeeeallly do not want one as I’ve read horrible stories about it. So I would rather go for any other option.

 

No one had ever offered any blood tests while on the NHS or private, I had to ask the doctor for one when I had my private consult. Not sure what type of blood test it was but I think it was just iron levels and stuff which came back normal. 

 

Only other thing I can think to add is one time I went out for a 13 mile bike ride and when I came home I was bleeding slightly. But other than that when I go for a run or whatever it has been fine. 

 

I was convinced I had PID from the first BV infection if the anti-biotics didn’t clear it up properly. I asked the private Dr about this and she said it can’t be that because I’ve had other swabs and they came back clear, but I’ve read online that PID wouldn’t flag up on a test (not sure how right that is though)

My partner (female) has also experienced symptoms that sound like PID so this also made me lean towards it being related to that) She hasn’t bled though but she has had pain and trouble urinating and stuff so unsure if it’s related at all.

 

I’ve googled other stuff like endometriosis, PCOS or polyps and fibroids and honestly nothing else sounded like my symptoms. I’ve never had bad periods, just the usual cramps but it hasn’t ever stopped me living life normally. I have felt slightly more bloated and tender in my abdomen during the month since all of this, plus some very mild cramps even when I’m not on my period. Not horrendously in pain or anything, just mildly uncomfortable. I’d also like to point out that I haven’t noticed any bad smells along with the discharge.

Honestly even wondering about perimenopause??? It kind of seems like my body is taking longer and longer to “clear out” essentially, after my period ends??? I guess that probably happens before menopause. My age makes it unlikely but still a possibility.

 

My obvious big worry is cancer. I’m scared that although my smear came back normal, what if they have missed something? 

 

Again, I’m sorry for the novel but if you’ve made it this far then thank you, I appreciate it so much!

 

If any of you have experienced any of these symptoms and think I should be worried or ask for any tests etc in specific then please please let me know.

 

Thanks in advance xx

​​Long Periods – Causes, Treatments, When To See A Doctor

Let’s not be coy here: Bleeding out of your vagina every single month is already kind of a pain. So when your period decides to extend its visit a little longer than usual, it can be downright infuriating—and concerning, TBH.

Hey, in a perfect world your period would come a-knockin’ at the same time each month, without all those crappy symptoms, and hang around for a few days before quietly bidding you adieu. But this isn’t a perfect world (alas), and menstruation—what it looks like, feels like, and how long it lasts—is different for every woman.

You might have a period that goes on for a full week, while others might be more accustomed to only a few short days of bleeding. For some women, though, long periods happen from time to time—and it can be nerve-wracking when you’re just not sure why your period won’t go away.

So, here’s a quick refresher on what a typical period length looks like, why long periods can happen, and how to know if it’s time to ask a doc about how long your period is hangin’ around.

How long does a period typically last?

There’s a pretty big range of normal when it comes to period length. “Usually, it can last anywhere between five to seven days,” says Jessica Shepherd, MD, a minimally invasive gynecologist in Dallas. “But there are times at which it can be a few days longer or shorter.”

Here’s a little Menstrual Cycle 101: During each cycle, your body’s sending hormones to thicken the lining of the uterus (endometrium) to make it a nice little home for a potentially fertilized egg. About midway through your cycle, one of your ovaries releases an egg, which then travels down the fallopian tubes to this newly plush uterus where, if it’s not fertilized by a sperm, it flows out of the body, along with the uterine lining that built up.

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While this process is the same for nearly every woman, the length of their periods might differ depending on their specific hormonal shifts over the course of their cycle, which affects the endometrium development, and in turn, the number of days it takes for it to shed, Dr. Shepherd explains.

So, if your period is a day or two longer or shorter than your usual period length and you don’t notice any other symptoms or issues that seem unusual for you (like extreme menstrual pain or cramps or very heavy bleeding), it’s probably not a reason to be concerned.

When should you call your doc about long periods?

If your period lasts longer than seven days, or if it suddenly changes significantly in length for three or more cycles in a row, that warrants a call to your ob-gyn, says Tom Toth, MD, a reproductive endocrinologist at Boston IVF. It’s also worth seeing your doc if you’re soaking a pad or tampon every hour for several hours or passing clots.

That doesn’t necessarily mean you’re dealing with something serious, but you want to get to the root of your period problem sooner rather than later. That’s because once you’re north of seven days and still bleeding, you’re at an increased risk for menorrhagia.

Simply put, menorrhagia is when bleeding is too heavy and interferes with your quality of life or requires interventions like blood transfusions, iron transfusions, medications or surgical procedures, Dr. Shepherd explains. Menorrhagia can also lead to other issues, like anemia, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Anemia can cause you to experience fatigue, weakness, and, in severe cases, nausea, vomiting and dizziness. Taking iron supplements can help improve symptoms, but you need to see your doc to get an the cause of the heavy bleeding.

How might your doctor diagnose a long period?

“Your doctor will ask how often you get your period, how many days it lasts, and do you have bleeding in between your period or after sex,” says Jodie Horton, MD, an ob-gyn in Oakton, Virginia, and chief wellness advisor for Love Wellness. “Other important clues to determine what is causing your abnormal uterine bleeding is how heavy your periods are, what medications you’re taking, if you’ve been tested for sexually transmitted infections and are up to date on your Pap smears.” So you’ll want to know that info before your visit.

Your doctor may perform a pelvic exam to evaluate the cervix and the size and regularity of the uterus, as well as a pelvic ultrasound or hysteroscopy to see inside your cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries for any abnormalities.

It sounds scary, but most causes of prolonged menstrual bleeding (like many of the ones below) aren’t a big deal and can be fixed or improved with the help of your doctor, Dr. Toth notes. And you deserve to have a normal period that doesn’t totally suck.

Here’s what might be causing your super long periods, and what you can do about each cause.

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1. You have an IUD.

One of the most common causes of long periods in younger women are intrauterine devices (IUDs), a type of birth control placed directly into your cervix. There are two main types: a non-hormonal, copper-based IUD (like Paraguard), and a hormonal, progestin-based IUD (like Mirena and Skyla).

If you experienced a prolonged period for three or more cycles, see your doctor.

It turns out that both can cause abnormally long bleeding, especially right after insertion, Dr. Toth says. Longer, heavier periods are a known side effect of the copper IUD. The progestin IUD, however, is often marketed to women as a way to reduce or even eliminate their periods. And while it typically does have that effect over time, the first few cycles may have more or longer bleeding than usual, he explains.

With either IUD, if the prolonged periods don’t settle down after three cycles, it’s time to go back to your doctor, as it’s possible the IUD moved out of position or simply doesn’t play nice with your body.

2. You’re ovulating.

Menstruation is your body’s way of getting rid of the extra blood and tissue it saved up in case your egg got fertilized, but sometimes the hormonal signals get crossed and you can bleed when you release the egg too, says Sherry Ross, MD, an ob-gyn and author of She-ology.

This occurrence is known as “intermenstrual bleeding,” and it happens as a result of the slight dip in estrogen that happens around ovulation, which can cause spotting. If the bleeding lasts a few days or happens close to the end of your last cycle, it may seem like your period is continuing forever. It’s not normally something to worry about, but if it changes suddenly or if you have serious pain, see your doctor.

3. You’re pregnant (yes, really).

Wait just a second: Isn’t the tell-tale sign of pregnancy no periods? Yes, but not all the time, Dr. Toth says. “A common cause for abnormal menses, including longer bleeding, is pregnancy,” he explains, adding that typical symptoms of pregnancy, like nausea, may be absent. “Any time a woman has unusual bleeding, it’s always best to eliminate possibility of pregnancy with a blood test for pregnancy for reassurance,” he says.

4. You’re on hormonal birth control.

Anything that manipulates your hormones has the potential to make your periods longer, says Dr. Toth. This includes all types of hormonal birth control like the pill, patches, rings, shots, and implants. The good news is that there are lots of options with varying levels and types of hormones, so if your body doesn’t respond well to one type or dosage, there’s a good chance you can find a different one that will work.

The length of your period is just one factor your doctor will use to help you determine which type of birth control works best for you.

5. You had an early miscarriage.

Early miscarriages are much more common than you may realize. Up to half of all pregnancies end in miscarriage, often before the woman even realizes she was pregnant, according to the March of Dimes.

Sometimes the only sign is an extra-heavy or long period. Your menstrual cycle length should return to normal within one to two cycles; if it stays abnormally long after three cycles, call your doctor, Dr. Toth says.

About one in 100 women suffer from repeat miscarriages, so it’s important to rule out a condition that affects fertility, like endometriosis.

6. You have PCOS.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) affects about 10 percent of women of childbearing age, per the Office of Women’s Health (OWH). It’s named for the cysts that grow on the ovaries, preventing eggs from maturing, and often causing fertility issues.

PCOS also wreaks havoc on hormone levels, causing weight gain, excess hair growth, and (you guessed it) prolonged periods, Dr. Toth says. You’d think that not ovulating would give you a free pass on bleeding, but the opposite is often true, he adds—no egg means long, wacky cycles.

If you’re experiencing super-long periods along with other signs of PCOS, like migraines, facial hair growth, and weight gain, talk to your ob-gyn about getting tested for the condition.

7. You have thyroid issues.

One in eight women will suffer from low thyroid function, or hypothyroidism, at some point in their lives, according to the OWH.

Your thyroid is a little butterfly-shaped gland that controls the hormones that regulate many systems in your body, including how fast you burn calories, how fast your heart beats, and yes, menstruation. Having too little thyroid hormone can cause your period to be super long and heavy, the OWH explains.

Other symptoms of hypothyroidism include weight gain, fatigue, and hair loss, so if you’re experiencing any of those, along with longer-than-normal periods, bring it up to your doctor, says Dr. Ross.

8. You have an underlying blood disorder.

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It’s rare, but it’s possible that extra-long periods are a sign of an underlying illness, like a hematologic (blood) disease, says Dr. Toth. Some of the underlying diseases associated with bleeding, like hemophilia or Von Willebrand disease, are genetic, so if you have this you likely already know about it.

Still, if your periods are lasting a super-long time, and you’ve already been cleared for other conditions, it’s worth checking in with your doctor about tests to rule out a blood disorder that you might not be aware of.

9. You have uterine polyps or fibroids.

“Uterine abnormalities, such as polyps or fibroids, can cause prolonged periods because they distort the endometrial cavity which can lead to increased blood flow,” Dr. Toth explains. Basically, your body senses something in your uterus that isn’t supposed to be there, and tries extra hard to get rid of it.

Polyps and fibroids sound scary, but they’re pretty common—up to 80 percent of women will have at least one before they’re 50, per the OWH. On their own, they don’t indicate a serious disease, like cancer. Important to note: Black women are two to three times more likely to have fibroids than white women, and the reasons for their increased risk are not well understood or well studied due to lack of representation of Black women in research, notes Dr. Horton. “Black women are also more likely to be hospitalized due to fibroids due to heavy, prolonged vaginal bleeding, pain, and symptoms from anemia.”

But for many people, these benign growths don’t have any symptoms, and if they do, it’s usually prolonged periods, says Dr. Toth. Most likely your doc will just recommend keeping an eye on them, but if they cause pain or grow very large they can be surgically removed.

10. You have undiagnosed cervical cancer.

Abnormal vaginal bleeding—such as bleeding after vaginal sex or bleeding and spotting between periods—can be a sign of cervical cancer. (Yet another reason to check in with your doctor if you notice something strange going on with your period.)

Because cervical abnormalities can be detected through Pap and HPV tests, make sure you stay on top of those, and always tell your doctor about your family history of female cancers.

11. Your body’s gearing up for menopause.

Oh yes, simply getting older can mess with your period. Menopause, which technically means you’ve gone 12 or more months without a period, hits women around age 50. However, your body starts the natural decline in hormones that leads up to menopause (a.k.a. perimenopause) as early as 35, says Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom.

When this happens, you may notice your periods getting longer or shorter, your cycle becoming more random, and other slight changes in your menstruation.

If you’ve ruled out everything else, and you’re in your mid- to late-30s, your prolonged periods might simply be due to the natural process of aging. There is, however, such a thing as early menopause, which can affect women even in their twenties. So talk to your doctor if this runs in your family or if you’re showing other signs of menopause, like a low sex drive or insomnia.

12. You’re under a lot of stress.

The body’s reaction to stress can change the levels of many hormones that cause your period to last longer than necessary, says Dr. Horton.

“Stress can cause delayed ovulation, causing your period to start later than expected, which can make your periods longer and heavier than usual,” she explains. “Identifying and eliminating stressors in your life will help regulate your periods over time. Meditation, getting enough sleep, and regular exercise are also effective ways to manage stress.”

13. You’re taking certain medications.

Medications such as anti-inflammatories, aspirin, or other blood thinners can also affect your menstrual cycle, says Dr. Horton.

“Aspirin and blood thinners prevent blood clots but can increase the flow of your period,” she explains. “These medications can thin the blood so much that it causes your menstrual cycle to be heavy and last longer than usual.”

As such, it is important to take medicines as directed and if your period becomes heavier or prolonged, to contact your doctor, says Dr. Horton. You may need blood work to determine if you are taking too much medicine, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories may be used to treat your heavy and prolonged periods.

14. You’re experiencing an ectopic pregnancy.

An unusually heavy period can be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy found outside of the uterus, most commonly in the fallopian tubes), says Dr. Horton. Taking a pregnancy test can help you figure out if that’s what’s going on.

“If you have a positive pregnancy test and have pain and vaginal bleeding, you should be evaluated,” she says. “Your doctor will get blood work and a pelvic ultrasound to see where the pregnancy is located and, if it is ectopic, treat it with medicine or surgery. ” Unfortunately, it’s not safe for a mother to carry an ectopic pregnancy.

15. You’re actually pregnant and have placenta previa.

This type of heavy vaginal bleeding is actually unrelated to a period, though you might think it is one if you don’t yet know you’re pregnant. Placenta previa is a condition that happens during pregnancy where the placenta covers the cervix, explains Dr. Horton.

Patients will usually have heavy vaginal bleeding throughout their pregnancy and will need to deliver their baby by C-section. Take a pregnancy test and see your doctor to figure out the best treatment method.

16. You have adenomyosis.

Adenomyosis is a condition where the uterus lining, called the endometrium, is found in the muscular portion of the uterus. It is common in women who are in their 40s and have heavy, prolonged, and painful periods, says Dr. Horton. It’s also common to experience painful sex and frequent miscarriages with this condition, which is often difficult to diagnose until other possibilities are ruled out.

“With adenomyosis, the uterus is usually larger than average, and that leads to heavy, painful periods,” she explains. Your doctor may order a pelvic ultrasound or MRI to help make the diagnosis.”

There is, unfortunately, no cure for adenomyosis, though symptoms are treatable, says Dr. Horton, so talk to your doc about your options.

17. You have pelvic inflammatory disease.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a condition caused by sexually transmitted bacteria, like that from gonorrhea and chlamydia, traveling from the cervix into the fallopian tube. PID can cause bleeding that is heavier than normal, spotting between menstrual cycles or spotting after sex.

“If you have abnormal bleeding and pain, get a pelvic exam and get tested for sexually transmitted infections,” says Dr. Horton. They can be treated with medication, which will stop the progression of PID too. Left untreated though, and PID can cause lasting issues with fertility.

18. You’re medically overweight or obese.

Obesity can affect your menstrual cycle, says Dr. Horton, because larger bodies produce excess estrogen, which can affect how often you have your periods and eventually cause you to stop ovulating regularly. “When you stop having periods every month, the lining of the uterus will become thick, and eventually shed, resulting in very heavy and prolonged bleeding.”

Losing weight (ideally 15 percent of your body weight) can help you regulate your periods, she says. Your doctor may also prescribe birth control pills or progesterone to help with the prolonged heaving bleeding.

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Reasons Why Your Period Is Lasting Longer Than Usual

By: Suzannah WeissBustle
December 1, 2017

I learned in middle school health class that your period should last between two and seven days. But I very quickly learned this was just the ideal situation for most people — not what everyone actually experiences. My first period lasted nine days. So, how long should your period last? And if it lasts more than a week, how do you know if there’s a cause for concern or if you just have a longer-than-average period?

It is possible that a long period is just normal for you, as long as you’re not experiencing any troublesome symptoms. However, all the blood loss resulting from long periods can lead to anemia, Salli Tazuke, MD, Co-Medical Director with CCRM San Francisco, tells Bustle. If you’ve always had a long period, there’s probably nothing wrong, but you should get a blood count to make sure you’re not anemic. Getting enough iron from supplements or foods like spinach, red meat, and poultry can help prevent anemia.

If this is new for you, though, you should talk to your doctor. There could be an underlying issue. The reason your period lasts more than a week depends on whether it has always been that long or has suddenly gotten longer, says Tazuke. Here’s what it could be in each situation.

If It’s New:

1. Pregnancy

If it only happens once, a long period could be a result of an early miscarriage or a tubal pregnancy, which occurs outside the uterus, says Tazuke. See a doctor to rule out these possibilities.

2. A Missed Period

If you miss a period, your next one may be longer than usual because your uterine lining has spent a long time building up, says Tazuke. The causes of a missed period include stress, sleep disturbances, and changes in weight.

3. Blood-Thinning Medications

Medications intended to avoid blood clotting can also affect your menstrual blood, says Tazuke. Pain relievers like Aspirin, Advil, and Motrin can also have this effect on some people.

If It’s Always Been That Way:

1. Excessive Bleeding

Some people are genetically more prone to bleeding, says Tazuke. If this is the case with you, you might also notice that you bruise or bleed easily on other parts of your body. This requires treatment, so see a doctor about it.

In Either Situation:

1. Uterine Fibroids

Fibroids are benign tumors on the uterus made of muscle cells and connective tissue. Seventy to 80 percent of women get fibroids before age 50, and most don’t even notice them. One sign of fibroids is a heavy or long-lasting period, says Tazuke. Others include frequent urination, an enlarged abdomen, and pain during sex. Most fibroids don’t have to be treated, but if you have some of these symptoms and they’re bothering you, you can go to a doctor for an ultrasound to see if you have fibroids, and they can be treated with pain relievers, hormonal medication, or, in severe cases, surgery.

2. Polyps

Polyps are another kind of uterine growth that can cause long or heavy periods, says Tazuke. They come from overgrowth of the uterus’s lining, and they’re sometimes cancerous but usually benign. Postmenopausal people are most likely to get them, though it’s possible for younger people to as well. Like fibroids, these don’t always require treatment, but they can be treated with hormonal medications or surgical removal.

3. Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are growths on the ovaries that most women have at some point. Sometimes they cause pain or rupture, and sometimes they go away before you even feel them. They don’t always affect your period, but they may go along with hormonal changes that can throw off your period. Ovarian cysts could also be a sign of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), whose symptoms include missed periods, making the next period long.

So, your long periods could mean a huge number of things. Most of them aren’t serious, but see your doctor just to make sure everything’s OK and to prevent anemia.

90,000 Periods during early pregnancy

Menstruation is a complex hormone-dependent process. This is a normal phenomenon for a woman, which occurs regularly in her body. During menstruation, bleeding occurs, which appears due to rejection of the mucous membranes of the uterus. Disposal of the functional layer of the endometrium occurs when the fertilization of the egg has not occurred. But menstruation during pregnancy is already a non-standard situation that requires detailed analysis.

Lack of menstruation on time is a sure sign that the egg has been fertilized. Women immediately buy drugstore tests to determine if they are pregnant. But even after conception, the appearance of bloody discharge from the vagina is possible. Is this a reason to see a doctor? Let’s figure out if you need to worry if your periods went early in pregnancy.

Mechanism of the menstrual cycle

The standard menstrual cycle lasts 28 days after the end of puberty.But menstruation can be considered normal if it lasts less (21 days) or more (35 days) the prescribed period. The only condition for compliance with the concept of “norm” is the regularity of the menstrual cycle.

Egg maturation occurs in the ovary. It should come out of the follicle around the middle of your menstrual cycle. After the follicle ruptures, the egg enters the ampullar part of the fallopian tube, i.e. ovulation occurs. If at this moment or within 24 hours there is a meeting of the sperm with the egg, then it will be fertilized.

If this does not happen, then the unclaimed endometrial layer is rejected, i.e. the same bleeding occurs, characteristic of menstruation. Although in fact, this discharge cannot be called blood, because it does not have the ability to clot. In addition to blood, the secreted fluid contains liquid secretions, mucus, enzymes and uterine membranes.

Periods early in pregnancy – is this normal?

After the fertilization of the egg and the onset of pregnancy, there can be no menstruation throughout the entire process of gestation (and a certain period after childbirth, when the female body returns to its usual cycle).

If menstruation has gone, then this condition cannot be considered the norm. From the point of view of physiology, this should not be, but practice shows that such a situation is possible. After all, we are not talking about some kind of soulless mechanism, but about the living organism of a pregnant woman.

Considering from a medical point of view, discharge is possible, but in extremely rare cases, if we are not talking about pathologies of the development of pregnancy. There is a possibility that more than one egg has matured during the cycle, but several.It is clear that the rest of the eggs will die, but their release may not be simultaneous.

These periods may differ from normal menstruation. Allocations are timely, but not so abundant. Moreover, they do not last so long. This is a logical explanation, which is considered the norm, but after a few weeks, when the pregnancy is in the active phase, all discharge disappears. At the same time, you need to understand that we are not talking about full-fledged menstruation, but about menstrual-like discharge.

All this refers to the normal process of pregnancy, but often these bleeding indicate possible pathologies. This is a rather alarming symptom, so you need to see a doctor.

Embryo implantation

Not all pregnant women experience this phenomenon. Minor bleeding may appear about 7 days after ovulation, when the egg reaches the uterus. The appearance of a discharge, similar to the usual menstruation, is caused by damage to the blood vessels that occurs at the time of embryo implantation.

This situation is considered to be the norm, therefore the whole process does not refer to a pathological condition. The discharge is not abundant, there is no pain.

Hormonal imbalance

Progesterone is the main hormone of pregnancy, which is necessary for the normal formation and development of the fetus. If it is present in sufficient quantity, then this excludes the appearance of a possible menstruation while the child is carrying. If progesterone is not enough, then menstrual-like discharge occurs, associated with the rejection of some of the cells from the uterine cavity. Lack of hormone is due to the following factors:

90,036 90,037 previous abortions;

  • inflammatory diseases of the endometrium, ovaries, fallopian tubes;
  • chronic liver and kidney diseases;
  • pathology of the corpus luteum of the ovaries.
  • Potential hormonal bleeding is the risk of potential termination of pregnancy if left unaddressed. If a lack of progesterone is detected, then the pregnant woman goes through compulsory therapy, which involves taking progesterone drugs.The course of treatment often lasts up to 18 weeks, when the threat of termination of pregnancy is unlikely.

    Injuries

    Progesterone has an emollient effect on the mucous membranes, so the woman’s vagina and uterus become more vulnerable to external influences. In this case, the amount of blood infused to the mucous membrane increases.

    Any, even minor, trauma to the vagina can lead to the onset of bleeding. This is a very common condition, especially if partners continue active sex life at their usual pace. Maintaining the same frequency of contacts, high intensity of frictions – all this leads to microtraumas.

    These secretions do not pose any danger, therefore they are not perceived as a symptom of any pathology. The only concern is that the infection gets into the place of microtrauma.

    Ectopic pregnancy

    The fixation of a fertilized egg in the wrong place (in the fallopian tube or ovary) is a pathological condition that at first may not manifest itself in any way.Only then there is severe pain in the place where the egg is attached.

    An additional symptom in the presence of which an ectopic pregnancy can be determined is brownish discharge from the genital tract. Their appearance is due to a lack of the hCG hormone. This is a very dangerous condition that leads to rupture of the fallopian tube if the pathology was not detected at an early stage.

    Miscarriage

    Spontaneous abortion occurs for various reasons: developmental anomalies, embryo rejection by the mother’s immunity, etc. e. If a miscarriage occurs, then bleeding occurs. The main difference from regular menstruation is the bright red color of the discharge, its abundance, as well as the presence of severe pains that are not characteristic of normal menstruation.

    What is the difference between regular periods and menstrual-like discharge?

    There are certain differences that make it possible not to confuse ordinary menstruation with any other discharge. In the normal mode, bleeding during the menstrual cycle follows a certain regimen – at first they are quite abundant, but gradually their number decreases.

    If the discharge is the result of a pathology, then their consistency and color will differ from the usual bleeding during the menstrual cycle:

    • Lack of pregnancy hormone – progesterone. At first, the discharge is rather weak, and minor pain in the groin area is possible. Then the pain sensations progress, as does the abundance of discharge.
    • Implantation bleeding coincides in time with the onset of menstruation, but the abundance of their discharge is much lower.
    • In case of miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy, the discharge is immediately abundant enough.Then a sharp pain appears, which can be localized in the abdomen, given to the lower back, etc.

    The main difference between normal menstruation and discharge for various pathologies is their color. Normally, the secreted fluid is quite dark in color, which resembles venous blood. With pathologies, the discharge becomes brown or bright red. It is important to pay attention to the accompanying symptoms: sharp cramping pains, heaviness, vomiting, false urge to defecate, etc.d.

    If the pregnancy has already been confirmed, then you need to be wary of any bloody discharge from the vagina. It is better to call an ambulance, even if the fears turn out to be in vain.

    90,000 Menstrual irregularities in adolescent girls

    Material provided by children’s gynecologist Bukinich Lyudmila Sergeevna

    even more on the doctor’s instagram

    GIRLS ‘MATURITY: CHANGES IN THE BODY

    Most parents believe that a girl’s sexual development begins with the onset of adolescence, about 12-14 years old, this is a widespread misconception. In fact, sexual development begins much earlier.

    Puberty is a process of changes in the body that affects their physical, psychological and emotional state and begins at about 8-9 years old. At this time, there is an increase in the level of sex hormones, which cause a number of changes in the body.

    An increase in the growth rate is observed, the pelvic bones grow, an increase in the amount of adipose tissue occurs (the thighs become wider, fat is deposited in the chest, buttocks and pubis, giving the body of a young girl a feminine outline) and secondary sexual characteristics appear.

    Secondary sexual characteristics appear in sequence. So from about 10 years old, the girl begins to mature and grow the mammary glands. The girl’s chest grows for a long time. The penultimate stage of breast development ends at the age of 14-16, and the final formation of the mammary glands is established only after breastfeeding. Soon after the breasts begin to grow, pubic hair begins to develop. Then, after several months, hair begins to grow in other parts of the body (armpits, legs, arms, etc.)e). And finally, on average – at 12 years old, the first menstruation appears.

    Menstruation is part of the menstrual cycle. The menstrual cycle is a series of hormonal and physical changes in the body that prepare the body for pregnancy. If pregnancy does not occur, the body returns to its original state, a new menstrual cycle begins.

    The duration of the menstrual cycle is measured from the beginning of one period to the beginning of the next, and on average lasts about 28 days.Cycle fluctuations from 21 to 35 days are also considered normal. Menstrual bleeding in adolescents lasts an average of 3-7 days.

    During the first two years after the onset of the first menstrual period in adolescents, the menstrual cycle can be irregular and it can take up to two years to establish a normal menstrual cycle.

    By age 18, puberty usually ends.

    Pay attention to the age at which secondary sex characteristics begin to appear in your child and the sequence in which they appear. If you notice any deviations in development, please contact our center, we will definitely help you.

    WHAT IS A DISRUPTION OF THE MENSTRUAL CYCLE?

    The regularity and intensity of menstruation in adolescents are very vulnerable and sensitive to various factors.

    Since adolescent menstruation is often irregular and normal, parents of adolescent girls often wonder when to start worrying?

    The main reasons for alarm should be highlighted:

    • If the first menstruation in a teenager did not appear before the age of 15 or the mammary glands did not begin to develop at the age of 13.
    • Menses suddenly stopped for more than three months.
    • Menstrual cycle became irregular after establishment.
    • The menstrual cycle lasts less than 21 days or more than 40 days.
    • Menstrual bleeding lasts more than seven days.
    • Menstrual bleeding is more intense than usual, or tampons or pads need to be changed more often than every two hours.
    • There is bleeding between periods.
    • Menses with severe pain.

    Various factors can affect a girl’s hormonal balance.

    In case of unstable menstruation, first of all, you should pay attention to:

    • External factors. The function of the female genital organs can be affected by unfavorable environmental conditions. A girl’s unfavorable family atmosphere is also likely to negatively affect her puberty.
    • Heredity.Problems with the reproductive organs in the mother are often transmitted to the daughter. The predisposition to delayed menstruation can be inherited.
    • Constant stress. Frequent stress has a very negative effect on the work and condition of all organs. If a girl is often worried or nervous, then there is a high probability that she will have irregular periods.
    • Increased physical activity. During puberty, it is very harmful to load the girl’s body with excessive physical exertion.
    • Incorrect power supply. Excessive thinness or obesity can lead to menstrual irregularities. Both of these extremes are due to poor nutrition. It is very important that in adolescence the girl’s body receives the required amount of useful trace elements and vitamins. Otherwise, it will not work to avoid a delay in menstruation and other complications.

    If a teenage girl has a menstrual irregularity, do not postpone a doctor’s examination.

    If you want to undergo an examination, take tests, do an ultrasound scan, get advice from a pediatric gynecologist, contact our medical center.

    STRESS AND DISRUPTION OF THE MENSTRUAL CYCLE IN ADOLESCENTS.

    Stress in adolescents is a complex phenomenon and can proceed quite violently against the background of hormonal changes in the body. Anything can act as a stress factor, but stress can and should be dealt with.

    The most common stressors are:

    • changes in the body associated with physiological maturation, especially if it begins a little earlier than in peers. It also happens that a guy or a girl begins to recover dramatically, because of which they become isolated and ashamed of their body. This can be a serious cause for concern.
    • peer pressure, both mental and physical. Violence, cruelty, division into groups. This phenomenon is quite common nowadays;
    • problems in the family. They can be of a different nature: misunderstanding on the part of parents, their rejection of the interests and tastes of a teenager; distance of parents from their child – many do not know what they love and what their children are interested in; divorce of parents;
    • change of residence and, as a result, parting with friends.
    • unrequited love. Often the first falling in love is perceived as a feeling for the rest of your life, and if something went wrong as you would like, then this can cause complete disappointment in love, in yourself and in life in general;
    • problems at school. Control, exams, EGE. For some reason, the usual requirements of teachers and parents for academic performance begin to seem overstated and also provoke stress.

    In adolescence, many problems can seem insurmountable.Knowing these factors and paying special attention to them will help prevent many stressful situations and find the best ways to resolve them.

    Signs of stress in adolescents are quite different, here are some of them: fatigue, gloominess, uncontrollable appetite, addiction to sweets and fat, dissatisfaction with their appearance, passion for diets in girls, open aggression, anger, irritability, isolation, self-isolation, interest in alcohol and cigarettes, a sharp drop in self-esteem, self-doubt, etc.d.

    Absolutely all organs are exposed to stress, but the female reproductive system is especially vulnerable. This is explained by hormonal changes in the body during stress.

    During stress, an increased secretion of the hormone prolactin occurs in the body. Normally, prolactin levels in women increase during pregnancy and remain consistently high when breastfeeding.

    The hormone prolactin has a direct effect on the female reproductive system. Under its influence, the secretion of progesterone, the main hormone of the second half of the menstrual cycle, occurs. Also, prolactin affects the functioning of the thyroid gland. Under the influence of prolactin, the activity of the thyroid gland slows down, and its connection with the pituitary gland is also disrupted. The level of thyroid-stimulating hormone, synthesized by the brain structure, increases. This often leads to menstrual irregularities. Outwardly, this manifests itself as a lengthening of the menstrual cycle. With a high concentration of prolactin, there may be a complete absence of menstruation – this phenomenon is called amenorrhea.

    Stress is also always accompanied by the activation of the adrenal cortex. It is there that cortisol is synthesized – another hormone that can affect the menstrual cycle. Excess cortisol often leads to excess weight, deterioration of the skin, and the growth of male-pattern body hair. On the part of the reproductive system, there is a violation of the regularity of the cycle. The consequence of this condition can be infertility.

    So do not underestimate the impact of stressful situations on the reproductive system and the girl’s body as a whole.

    There are a number of ways a teenager can try to eliminate stress.

    1. It is necessary to create an atmosphere of openness and trust in the house. The child should know that he can turn to his parents for help and advice at any time.

    2. It’s good if the teenager has a hobby. Scientists have proven that adolescents who have hobbies are less likely to experience stress, they are less likely to pick up bad habits. But if the child is very tired, studying in two or three circles, then perhaps it makes sense to leave classes in any of them, because of the possible overload of the body, with the benefit of the most interesting and promising for later life.

    3. It is necessary to control the time spent by the child at the computer. Compliance with the norm will help you get better sleep, go to bed on time, and get tired less. The sleep rate in adolescents is 8-10 hours. It is during this time that the body is able to fully recover. Chronic lack of sleep leads to decreased performance, fatigue, and from here irritability and weakened immunity. In addition, chronic fatigue and lack of sleep can also lead to an increase in prolactin levels and, as a consequence, menstrual irregularities.

    4. It is important that optimal physical activity is present in the life of a teenager. In combination with a change of environment, movement harmonizes the psyche, neutralizes the effects of stress, and helps to calm down. Out-of-town trips, picnics, excursions, outdoor games, sports clubs will not only relieve stress, but also help you find new friends.

    5. Parents need to be a personal example of optimism and calmness for the child. If you yourself perceive life’s problems without unnecessary excitement and panic, then your child will copy the same attitude towards problems.Teach children from childhood to maintain a positive attitude and see positive moments in every difficult situation.

    6. It is necessary to celebrate the child’s successes, to praise him in new achievements.

    7. If you make a remark to a child, then scold his act, and not himself.

    8. It is not necessary to sort things out in front of children. They take even the slightest conflict in the family to heart. Due to hypersensitivity and increased suspiciousness, many adolescents, without any reason, begin to blame themselves for all family troubles.It seems to them that something is wrong with them, therefore, there are only troubles around. Adolescents suffer painfully when their parents do not understand them, when mother and father constantly quarrel, when one of their relatives is seriously ill.

    Most of these preventive measures are quite effective. But if a teenager is already experiencing stress and the proposed options do not help, then the help of specialists is needed.

    In our center, you can also be examined by a pediatric gynecologist and consult a psychologist. Remember, only through joint efforts on the part of the family, psychologists and doctors can a lasting positive result be achieved.

    Keywords 90,000 Menstrual irregularities – causes, first symptoms, recommendations

    Amenorrhea (absence of menstruation for 6 months or more), it accounts for 0.6 – 1.2% of cases. It is divided into primary (absence of menstruation at the age of 16 years and older) and secondary (absence of menstruation for 6 months or more after a period of regular or irregular menstruation).

    Oligomenorrhea (the interval between menstruation is more than 35 days).

    Reasons

    • Hormonal disorders.
    • Unfavorable environmental conditions, which can affect the function of female genital organs, and social factors – an unhealthy environment in the family.
    • Hereditary factor.
    • Stress factor. Strenuous study at school, problems in understanding with adults.
    • Excessive physical activity.
    • Incorrect power supply. In this aspect, two extremes are most often encountered – obesity and the desire for unhealthy thinness.
    • Chronic non-gynecological diseases (cardiovascular, endocrinological, central nervous system and others).
    • Congenital diseases of the female reproductive system.

    Symptoms

    • The girl is already 15 years old, but she has not started her first period.
    • More than 3 months have passed since the last menstruation.
    • For more than a year, the menstrual cycle is irregular.
    • Menstrual flow lasts more than 7 days.
    • Your menses are suddenly heavier and you need to change your pads more often than every two hours.
    • Profuse bleeding appears between periods.
    • Menses with severe pain.

    A girl’s first menstruation is an important moment in her life.The future women’s health depends on at what age, how abundant, how long and after what period of time menstruation will become regular. Therefore, if you are not sure that everything is going right for your daughter, do not hesitate and contact a specialist. At this stage, you can identify minor changes in the formation of your child’s menstrual function and start preventive or therapeutic measures in conjunction with a competent pediatric gynecologist.

    A complex of methods allows to carry out a comprehensive diagnosis, establish a diagnosis, and prescribe timely treatment: a doctor’s consultation, laboratory and ultrasound diagnostics.

    Prevention

    • Organization of the correct daily routine with the obligatory good rest and nutrition.
    • Limitation of excessive physical and intellectual exertion, protection from stress.
    • Vitamin therapy (B vitamins, vitamin E are used).
    • Physiotherapy (balneotherapy, etc.).

    More about pediatric gynecology at the YugMed clinic

    90,000 How do I know exactly what day I got pregnant?

    Many women are keenly concerned about this issue, because the more accurately it is possible to determine the date of conception, the easier it will be to predict the date of birth of the baby. But is it realistic to determine the exact date of conception and how to do it? Let’s find out.

    First of all, it is worth knowing that the date of conception always coincides with the date of ovulation, since the egg cell remains viable only for the first day after leaving the follicle. Another question is that few women can accurately determine the day of ovulation – only ultrasound control will definitely show this.

    The second point that is worth knowing is that the date of intercourse will not always be the date of conception.Why? Because sperm remain viable in the uterus for 4-7 days, which means that pregnancy can occur a week after sexual intercourse.

    How, then, to determine the day of pregnancy? Here are some methods.

    1. Early ultrasound.

      If an ultrasound scan is done for up to 7 weeks, then the date of conception can be determined most accurately, with an error of 2-3 days. During this period, the embryo develops proportionally and its size is approximately the same in all women. At a later date, the size of the fetus can vary greatly, so it will be almost impossible to calculate the exact day of conception.

    2. Last menstruation.

      This method is fairly accurate, but only if you have a stable, regular cycle. To determine the date of birth, you need to add 280 days to the day of your last menstrual period. To simplify the calculation, you can use the following formula: subtract three months from the month of the last menstruation, and add 7 days to the day of the last menstruation.

    3. First fetal movement.

      Not the most accurate method, but still helps to determine the approximate gestational age. Usually, women begin to feel the movement of the baby at 18-20 weeks. Thin and multiparous women can feel fetal movement as early as 16 weeks.

    So, as you can see, the most reliable ways to determine the exact date of pregnancy is the day of ovulation and ultrasound in the early stages. That is why it is important not to delay the ultrasound and visit the doctor as soon as possible after a positive result of the express pregnancy test. The best way to do this in a comfortable environment is to choose our medical center. Here are friendly and highly qualified specialists who will answer all your questions.

    90,000 Doctors talked about the relationship of coronavirus with menstrual irregularities

    British women complained of premature menopause after being infected with the coronavirus. At the same time, some of them had no prerequisites for breaking the cycle. Russian women also began to notice disruptions in women’s health in 2020.We are looking into what could be the reason for such an unusual effect of COVID-19 and how this may affect the health of women in the future.

    “We’ll have to accept”

    Photo: depositphotos / AndreyPopov

    One of the women who suffered coronavirus with unexpected consequences is Don Knight from Somerset. She fell ill back in March after returning home from Thailand. According to the 46-year-old British woman, the fight against COVID-19 in her case dragged on for several weeks. And besides the usual symptoms, she did not have critical days.

    “My symptoms of coronavirus were so terrible and lasted for months, which made it difficult for me to get up from the couch, so the absence of menstruation was the least of my problems,” the woman told reporters.

    It got to the point that Knight had to see a doctor in June due to worsening symptoms. Her pulse quickened and she had a fever in her arms and legs. After taking a blood test, it turned out that the levels of estrogen, progesterone and follicle-stimulating hormone, which are responsible for reproduction, were at “postmenopausal” levels.

    After collecting all the data, the doctor told the woman that she had gone through menopause. According to Knight, there were no prerequisites for this.

    Another similar incident happened to Anna Maria Grieve, a 47-year-old resident of the Scottish city of Shotts. In addition to the traditional symptoms, a month later she did not have critical days. Moreover, she was pregnant just a year ago. According to her, coughing, shortness of breath, loss of taste and smell have not gone away for several months.

    The founder of one of the COVID-19 patient communities on the Internet, Claire Harris, said that similar situations with women who had recovered occurred not only in Britain, but around the world.

    34-year-old resident of the capital Elena told Moscow 24 that after she had asymptomatic coronavirus in the fall, with the onset of cold weather, something that had never happened before began with her cycle.

    It seems that menstruation has just ended, and the chest is already starting to ache, as before the next. They themselves too … I will spare you the details, but at first I even thought that I suddenly somehow got pregnant, although this is unlikely, and now I have such a miscarriage. In general, I was terribly scared.And now a new cycle – and again the strange behavior of my body is repeated.

    Elena

    a resident of Moscow

    Now Elena is going to see a doctor again. She fears that this situation will affect women’s health, given that she and her husband were planning a pregnancy in 2021. At the same time, the Muscovite does not exclude that the coronavirus itself has nothing to do with it, but rather reflected the overall enormous stress that “fell on the shoulders” in connection with the pandemic and its consequences.

    A 23-year-old Muscovite Anna told us about similar failures.According to her, a small cycle failure occurred in the first month after she had had coronavirus.

    “But I did not strain, after every cold I have it like that. I do not know whether it is connected with the” corona “or not. adding that she had fever as a symptom, and lost her sense of smell.

    But a 25-year-old resident of the capital Margarita told us that no cycle failure happened to her personally after COVID-19.

    “It all started with the fact that I woke up with a wild shiver, breaks all bones, joints, temperature under 38, did not go astray, and a wild fever. There was no cough, but on the fifth day the smells disappeared. And all this was terrible for two weeks. passed “, – recalls Margarita in a conversation with Moscow 24.

    There were complications in the kidneys. I have been treating cystitis for the second month already. But at the same time, there were no problems with the cycle. Everything is on time, as it should be.

    Margarita

    who had had coronavirus

    Earlier, the leading researcher of the National Medical Research Center of Endocrinology of the Ministry of Health Sergei Bogolyubov reported about the risks of sexual dysfunction in men after coronavirus.According to him, due to the disease, sexual desire may decrease.

    Can’t give birth?

    Photo: portal of the mayor and government of Moscow / Evgeny Samarin

    Physician-therapist Lyudmila Lapa, in a conversation with Moscow 24, noted that menstrual irregularities were indeed observed in her practice of communicating with patients who had had coronavirus. And there is an objective reason for that.

    With coronavirus, blood thickens. And we have premature pauses of menstruation when there is a thickening of blood in the small pelvis.If the patients do not continue to drink blood thinners for a month and a half after the illness under control, this leads to similar consequences.

    Lyudmila Lapa

    General practitioner

    The stress suffered during the illness also affects the cycle disorders, the expert continues. And all because the hormones secreted by the body also affect the thickening of the blood. In addition to the cycle, patients have other residual effects, such as shortness of breath or gastrointestinal problems. Therefore, doctors prescribe restorative therapy to patients, said the therapist.

    “However, before taking blood thinners, you need to consult with a specialist, tell him about all your complaints, pass all the necessary tests so that the doctor can collect an anamnesis and make a decision on treatment,” the specialist summed up.

    Physician, immunologist Irina Yartseva told Moscow 24 that in the case of women from Britain, whose story is given in the materials of local media, at 46 and 47 years old menopause can occur due to the characteristics of the body, the coronavirus may have nothing to do with it …

    “Indeed, I had situations when patients told me that they either had a cycle before, or had intermenstrual discharge. But this is normal for any stressful situation. I doubt that the onset of menopause is somehow connected with the defeat of the ovarian coronavirus So far, there are no such data, scientific articles on this matter. I do not think that menopause is one of the new symptoms of coronavirus, “Yartseva said.

    Obstetrician-gynecologist of the Kulakov Scientific Center for Obstetrics, Gynecology and Perinatology Yulia Kubitskaya told Moscow 24 that the menstrual cycle is quite vulnerable.And any disease, including coronavirus, can contribute to its disruption.

    “To understand whether the coronavirus will affect women’s health in the future, research needs to be done. But I think that this is unlikely. For early menopause to occur, the ovaries must be depleted, and for this to happen, it either had to be inherited or must hormones may be disrupted, but this is unlikely with COVID-19, “says Kubitskaya.

    I am inclined to believe that these are the effects of stress on the body.And I think that, most likely, it will be a reversible phenomenon. As was the wartime amenorrhea, when menstruation was simply absent in most women. And then everything returned to normal life, menstruation appeared, children were born.

    Yulia Kubitskaya

    obstetrician-gynecologist

    At the same time, Kubitskaya noted that she did not personally meet complaints of menopause and menstrual irregularities after COVID-19 from patients.

    Read also

    Nikita Kamzin, Anastasia Pavelko, Natalia Korchmarek

    Menstrual irregularities

    Violation of the menstrual cycle (MMC) is a fairly common gynecological problem.Timely diagnostics and therapy will allow you to forget about a dangerous pathological condition forever. It is important to contact a highly qualified specialist who will accurately determine the causes of violations. IMMA medical clinics have assembled a staff of leading gynecologists, thereby ensuring high accuracy of research and treatment.

    In order to clearly understand that the body is malfunctioning, it is necessary to have a general understanding of the menstrual period and associated medical norms.

    In our clinics you can:

    For more details and for any questions, please contact the number indicated on the website

    Basic concept

    Each cycle conditionally consists of three phases: follicle maturation, egg release, progesterone synthesis. The menstrual period is a constant change at regular intervals. A normal, healthy cycle lasts 21 to 35 days. It depends on personal characteristics and place of residence. For example, in the south – in women, the maturation of the egg is faster, in the northern latitudes – the process slows down somewhat.

    If serious shifts occur, up or down, then these are the first alarming signs that there are negative changes in the body. With a standard cycle, the number of monthly days is a personal indicator (usually from 3 to 7). Another thing is important, how exactly they proceed – pain, general well-being, blood loss. Increased soreness, up to fainting, profuse discharge, delay in critical days is a serious reason for contacting a gynecologist.

    Possible causes

    The etiology of menstrual dysfunction can be divided into the following groups:

    • External factors.These include all stressful situations for the body – a sharp weight loss, a strict diet, depression, emotional breakdown, climate and time zone changes, unfavorable ecology, work in difficult conditions.
    • Pathological conditions. With age, a woman is susceptible to natural aging processes and the acquisition of concomitant diseases. Menstrual irregularities, after 40 years, may be associated with the onset of menopause or exacerbation of chronic diseases. Almost all pathologies have a negative impact on the female menstrual function.Starting from the usual acute respiratory infections and ending with serious oncological diseases.

    Medicinal effects. Very often, the root cause of the violation of the monthly cycle is the intake of drugs on a hormonal basis. Contraceptives, corticosteroids are the first on the list of medicines that disrupt the menstrual period.

    Important! If failures in the cycle occur in the primary period, in girls 10 – 16 years old, then this is a completely normal picture. At this stage, puberty occurs and an optimal hormonal ratio is formed in the body.

    Pathological factors

    In the female body, all organs and processes occurring in them are closely interconnected. In the menstrual cycle, not only the reproductive system is involved, but also the entire endocrine system. Therefore, any inflammatory processes can cause menstrual irregularities, especially after 40 years. In gynecology, the following factors are distinguished, which more often than others have a negative impact:

    • Pathological changes in the ovaries.
    • Endometriosis.
    • Myomas, fibromas and other oncological neoplasms.
    • Genetic predisposition.
    • Surgical intervention.
    • Infectious diseases.
    • Mental disorders.
    • Endocrine diseases.
    • Hypertension and pathology of the cardiovascular system.

    Allergies, vitamin deficiency.

    Signs of menstrual irregularities

    All symptoms of menstrual dysfunction are related to the cycle and overall well-being.Abundant, scanty, excessively painful periods are the main signs of a violation. In the International Classification of Diseases, the signs of irregular menstruation are divided into the following conditions:

    • Absence of menstruation for more than three months – amenorrhea. It is associated with both a normal state (pregnancy, lactation, menopause) and pathological changes.
    • Rare menstruation once every 3-4 months – oligomenorrhea. May indicate serious pathologies in the ovaries.
    • Excessive blood loss in the normal cycle – hyperpolymenorrhea.
    • Scanty menstruation lasting 1-2 days – opsomenorrhea.
    • Intense bleeding throughout the cycle – metrorrhagia.
    • Delayed menstruation or early onset – dysmenorrhea.

    Painful menstruation, accompanied by nausea, headaches, problems with stool, some malfunction of the cycle, emotional excitability – algodismenorrhea.

    Important! Any condition, even if it is within the normal range (for example, pregnancy), requires regular visits to the gynecologist to monitor the occurrence of abnormal changes.

    Therapeutic measures

    Treatment of menstrual irregularities depends entirely on the woman’s age, the presence of concomitant diseases and the intensity of symptoms. And if in the primary period it is quite enough to carry out vitamin therapy, then in childbearing age or with the onset of menopause, hormonal medications are no longer possible.Therefore, the treatment is carried out in several directions.

    Teenage violations

    If a teenage girl has abnormal bleeding, general weakness, persistent nausea, the gynecologist, after a series of diagnostic measures, decides on hormone therapy or vitamin therapy. Additionally, antianemic drugs are prescribed to avoid the development of pathological changes in the composition of the blood. In severe cases, when painful periods interfere with normal life, curettage may be indicated, followed by a study of the biomaterial.

    Failures at the age of reproduction

    In childbearing age, the treatment of menstrual irregularities is the key to preserving the natural function of conception and birth. Therapy has a lot to do with adolescence. The differences lie in preparations and methods. For example, if curettage does not give positive results, burning of the endometrium or medications that stimulate ovulation may be indicated.

    Changes during menopause

    At the stage of menopause, the procedure for curettage of the uterus is mandatory.Bleeding at this age may indicate malignant neoplasms in the endometrium. Therefore, it is primarily diagnostic, according to the results of which further therapy is determined. With positive results, a hysterectomy is prescribed – resection of the uterus, followed by treatment with hormones.

    Contact us

    Medical clinics IMMA provide a full range of services for the diagnosis and treatment of menstrual irregularities. You can make an appointment with a gynecologist by using the contacts indicated on the website or by contacting the clinic’s registry in person.Convenient location, our own laboratory allow you to carry out all the necessary activities with comfort, without wasting material and time resources.

    Angarsk Perinatal Center: Pregnancy Calendar

    Regardless of whether it is your first pregnancy or you already have a child and are expecting another, an exciting period of life is coming for you. You began to feel the birth and development of a new life within yourself.

    Calculation of due date

    In most cases, women do not know the exact date of conception, but they can tell exactly when the last menstrual cycle began.This is the point from which pregnancy is usually counted. For most women, the most likely period of fertilization (ovulation) lies in the middle of their monthly cycle, in other words, two weeks before the start of the next menstrual cycle.

    Based on this date, pregnancy lasts about 280 days, or 40 weeks, from the start of the last menstrual cycle. So you can get your estimated due date by adding 280 days to your last cycle date of bleeding. The same result can be obtained by adding 7 days to the date of the last menstrual cycle and subtracting 3 months.For example, if your last period began on February 20, then the time of birth is supposedly November 27.

    This pregnancy calculation determines the so-called gestational or menstrual age of the fetus. It is on this “calendar” that doctors and nurses will track the development of the fetus. Gestational age differs from ovulation, or fertile, age, which is two weeks less and is counted from the actual date of conception.

    Many people calculate their pregnancy in weeks.This is the easiest and most convenient way to avoid confusion. For example, if your doctor says that you are 10 weeks pregnant (remember that you are counting from the start of your last menstrual period), then you conceived about 8 weeks ago and will start labor in 30 weeks, since the total gestation period is 40 weeks.

    There is also a large unit of measurement – the trimester. The trimesters divide the gestational age into three phases. Each such phase, lasting 13 weeks, has its own characteristics.

    You may have also heard about another unit of time – the lunar month. It corresponds to the cycle of changing lunar phases and is 28 days. The full gestational age of 280 days is 10 lunar months.

    The calendar is based on a 42-week pregnancy schedule. The expected time of labor (ERT) is at the end of the 40th week, so you will know the age of the developing fetus at any time during pregnancy.

    It is important to understand that OVR is an approximate date, not an exact date.Only one woman in 20 gives birth exactly on the day of OVR, and 90 percent of women give birth a week earlier or a week later. Therefore, you cannot rely on the date of OVR. It may turn out that it will come, and the child will not be born for some time. Consider this date as a guideline – a deadline for which you must prepare.

    There is no fundamental difference in how to count the time of pregnancy. All the same, the process will not go faster. It will last as long as nature allotted.After all, a miracle happens – a new life grows and develops in your body!

    Your menstrual cycle

    You estimate that your menstrual cycle will probably end at the beginning of the second week of pregnancy or a few days earlier. The usual interval between periods is 28 days, but they can occur after 21 and even after 35 days (meaning the time interval between the first days of two menstrual cycles, many women consider the duration of the menstrual cycle incorrectly – between the day the menstrual cycle ends and the beginning of the next menstrual period) , and there is nothing abnormal in this.In most cases, menstruation lasts from 4 to 6 days. Discharge from the uterus is a mixture of the rejected mucous membrane of the uterus and blood. Clotted blood may also appear. On average, during menstruation, a woman loses 25-60 ml of blood. Blood loss in different women can be different, and in one woman it can change from one cycle to another.

    Two important biological cycles occur almost simultaneously in a woman’s body. As a result of the ovulation cycle (ovulation), a mature egg appears, ready for fertilization, and during the endometric cycle, the uterine wall is prepared for implantation of the fertilized cell.Both cycles are closely related to each other, because endometrial changes are regulated by hormones that are secreted in the ovary.

    Normal alternation of ovulation and menstrual cycles (with the formation of one egg for fertilization) is the rule, not the exception. Some women experience irregular egg production cycles. These cycles can take place without ovulation. This is quite rare compared to regular and predictable menstrual cycles and hormonal changes.

    Your body produces many hormones, including follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH), secreted by the pituitary gland, as well as estrogen, progesterone, and androgens (testosterone), which are produced in the ovary.

    The natural purpose of the ovulation cycle is to produce an egg for fertilization. The body of a newly born girl contains about 2 million eggs. Their number is reduced to about 400 thousand by the beginning of puberty.But the maximum number of eggs is formed before birth. When a fetus is only 5 months old (4 months before birth), it contains approximately 6.8 million eggs.

    During the ovulation cycle, 20 or more follicles can begin the process leading to ovulation. And only one of them, bursting, can turn into a mature egg. Before the onset of ovulation, this follicle approaches the wall of the ovary, which is becoming thinner. At the time of ovulation, an egg is formed at the site of the bursting follicle.The place where the follicle ruptures on the ovarian wall is called stigma.

    Some women (approximately 25 percent) experience lower abdominal pain or discomfort on the day of ovulation or the next day. They are believed to be caused by irritation of the ovary by fluid or blood from the follicle when it bursts. Pain is not necessarily felt with every cycle. By the presence or absence of this symptom, one can judge whether ovulation has occurred or not.

    Most often, a woman becomes pregnant in the middle of the menstrual cycle, on the 12-14th day from the beginning of the last menstruation.However, the beginning of the last menstruation is considered to be the starting point for ten obstetric months, or forty weeks of pregnancy. Therefore, we will begin to talk about the peculiarities of fetal development from the third week of pregnancy, that is, after the moment of conception.

    What happens in the body of a woman and a child at the stages of pregnancy:

    FIRST TRIMESTER SECOND TRIMESTER THIRD TRIMESTER
    1st week 15th week Week 29
    2nd week 16th week 30th week
    3rd week 17th week 31st week
    4th week 18th week 32nd week
    5th week 19th week 33rd week
    6th week 20th week 34th week
    7th week 21st week 35th week
    8th week 22nd week 36th week
    9th week 23rd week 37th week
    Week 10 24th week Week 38
    11th week 25th week 39th week
    12th week 26th week 40th week
    13th week 27th week 41st week
    14th week 28th week Week 42

    .