An irregular monthly period is nowadays a household term. Every second woman aging between 20 to 30 years is suffering from this, and even after having regular periods for an extended time, the cycle suddenly gives you tantrums and stops the pattern of a clockwork. If you are not pregnant and not somewhere near the menopause, irregular monthly periods can be a real concern.
So, if you are worried about it and still wondering if you have to see a doctor for your irregular period’s cycle, here’s something to clear your doubts. Read on to know more.
Irregular Monthly Period: Explained
Usually, an egg is released from one of your ovaries at the time of regular periods or menstrual cycle. This process is called ovulation. If no sperm fertilize those eggs at the time of ovulation, the hormones in your body make the uterine wall shed the blood and tissue that lines your uterus. The bleeding usually extends for four to five days. And right after 28 days, the cycle repeats.
But some women have this abnormal uterine bleeding, which happens twice in a month. The features most include:
- Bleeding or spotting between periods
- Painful intercourse
- Heavy bleeding during periods
- Menstrual bleeding that lasts longer than usual
- Bleeding even in your menopause
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), more than 9% of women face the problems of irregular periods and reach their menopause at an early age. If not treated on time, it can grow into a reason for many fatal diseases.
Is It Irregular Monthly Period Or Abnormality
Well, irregularity itself is an abnormality, but sometimes medications and underlying diseases can also trigger irregularity. So, it’s crucial to identify the difference between abnormality and irregularity. Let’s take a look at the scenarios when you should call your doctor.
- Delayed periods and you miss three or more periods in a year
- During scenarios of frequent periods and there’s no gap of at least 21 days
- If your period delays for more than 35 days
- In case of excessively heavy periods
- If your period extends for more than seven days
- In case of painful periods
You can also choose to call your physician if you experience
- Bleeding or spotting between your usual period cycle
- Sexual intercourse followed by bleeding or spotting
- Bleeding after menopause
Possible Causes of Irregular Monthly Period
As already mentioned, irregularity in periods is not always the outcome of abnormal physiological functions or any disease. Sometimes there are causes behind it, and the reasons are listed here.
Excessively diabetic— Hormones often have their impact on the blood sugar levels, which disrupts the menstruation cycle in women with unmanageable diabetes.
Eating disorders—People with eating disorders often suffer from ailments like anorexia, which frequently triggers conditions like irregular or missed periods. The reason is an anorexic body fails to produce enough hormones to control the menstrual cycle.
Hyperprolactinemia—The presence of prolactin, the protein hormone in the blood, can trigger conditions like irregular periods.
Specific Medications—Certain medications, such as anti-epileptics and antipsychotics, often create the problems of irregular periods.
Polycystic ovary syndrome— Nowadays, every second person you come across has polycystic ovary or PCOS. It often triggers an imbalance of sex hormones and further disrupts the regular menstruation cycle.
Premature ovarian failure—Women with premature ovarian failure often suffer from this condition.
The Takeaway Point
Regular monthly periods ensure the health and well-being of a woman. While the irregularity signals abnormality. However, before you see the doctor, find out if your symptoms are an abnormality or merely the outcome of any underlying disease or medication.