What Causes Irregular Periods?
Do you suffer from an irregular menstrual cycle? A lot of women suffer from this due to various reasons. If you do, it’s important you know about it to help you make the right health choices.
An irregular menstrual cycle falls outside of normal ranges continuously for an unexpected reason. Changes in the length of your cycle are normal, and in some cases, irregularity is normal and expected, but only when your periods have only started and when they’re about to end. You can also expect an irregular menstruation cycle after pregnancy or when you are starting or stopping birth control.
It becomes an issue when your cycles remain to be irregular in between these times. That is when you need to see your doctor.
How Do You Know If Your Menstrual Cycle Is Irregular
Your menstrual cycle will be considered clinically irregular when most of your cycles in the past six months are out of the normal range. You may also notice your periods to be very unpredictable.
Why It Happens
There are various reasons why irregular menstrual cycles happen. The most common reasons are:
- Postpartum period
- Working night shifts
- Sleep disorders
- Jet lag
- Chronic stress
- Intensive exercise
- Substance use or abuse
- Quick weight changes
- Eating disorders
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- Thyroid disorders
- Unmanaged diabetes
- Reproductive tract infections
- Uterine polyps
- Uterine fibroids
- Cervix or vagina abnormalities
- Certain cancers or benign tumours
- Primary ovarian insufficiency
- Bleeding disorders
Why You Should Address It
Irregular menstrual cycles can have a serious impact on your health. Remember, your menstrual cycle health is related to your heart health, metabolism, fertility, sleep and more. That is why if you notice your cycles have become irregular, it’s essential you get medical attention right away. Any potential issues must be diagnosed as early as possible and managed by your healthcare provider.
How to Talk to Your Doctor About Your Irregular Menstrual Cycle
Before you go to a doctor, it’s crucial you have all the necessary details of your menstrual cycles, such as your cycle history. That is why you need to record it as soon as you notice irregularities in your cycle. That way, you will have a reference, which can help your doctor diagnose you more effectively.
You should also take down any changes in your body, such as unexplained abdominal pain, difficulty controlling weight, unusual hair growth on your face or body, etc. These things will also help your doctor diagnose and pinpoint the cause of your irregular period.
Expect to be asked several questions as well, such as your full health history. You will also be asked to have some blood tests to check the levels of hormones and sugars in the blood. Your doctor will likely perform a pelvic ultrasound of your ovaries and uterus.
Manage Your Irregular Menstrual Cycles
Don’t put off your irregular menstrual cycles, because in most cases, this isn’t normal. If you notice irregularities, it’s best to consult with your doctor right away to address the issue as soon as possible, before it gets worse.
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