An Introduction To Nausea And Pms
Nausea may not be the most common symptom of PMS but it can be highly unpleasant and unsettling.
Feeling nauseated can lead to a loss of appetite as well as make it more difficult for you to concentrate on normal daily activities. Some women may also be prone to vomiting as a result of severe nausea.
Nausea during PMS may sometimes be mistaken as a sign of pregnancy and hence, can be a disconcerting symptom. However, unlike this state of affairs, PMS nausea occurs monthly just before a period and disappears once menstrual bleeding starts.
You’re Clumsier During Your Period
Yes, during your period, you may feel like the clumsiest person in the world there is a reason for it. Studies suggest that because your hormones are fluctuating, when your estrogen increases, your liver starts to produce its own hormones that affect your kidneys, which causes you to bloat and retain fluid, making it harder for you to stay balanced.
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Random Reasons Why Your Period Is Totally Out Of Whack
Heres what to do when everythings NOT coming up roses.
Most women’s cycles last anywhere from 21 to 35 daysbut about one in 10 have irregular periods or super heavy bleeding, according to the National Institutes of Health. That can mean lots of things, from a period that goes MIA, to periods that are completely unpredictable, to bleeding that drags on for eight days or more, to random spotting.
“Most women are pretty attuned to their period, though changes can occur through decades and after kids,” says Alyssa Dweck, M.D., an ob-gyn in in New York. “But if you still think something’s wrong with your period after a month or two, get it checked out.”
Jessica Shepherd, M.D. , an ob-gyn in Chicago, notes that sometimes, changes can be a sign of something more serious. “We may look for an STD or do a biopsy to make sure it’s not something that needs to be treated,” she says.
Here are a few reasons why your period might go wonkyand what you can do about it.
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Why Do I Feel Queasy On My Period
The hormones that fluctuate throughout the month impact your whole body, even in ways that dont seem obvious.
Basically, your uterus and other abdominal organs are roommates who dont always get along but have to share the same space. Here are some of the common reasons you might feel nauseated before or during your period.
You’re More Susceptible To Yeast Infections At Certain Points In Your Cycle
During your period or right before, you are more susceptible to yeast infections. So if you are itching or burning down there, or if you’re feeling more vaginal pain than normal, it could be because you’re also suffering from yeast infection symptoms.
Your pH levels change during your period, which can trigger yeast or bacterial infections that can quickly get out of control. If you’re feeling symptoms of a yeast infection, consider making a visit to your gynocologist or investing in some over-the-counter yeast infection remedies to ease your symptoms.
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You’re More Prone To Poop Problems
Maybe you notice its difficult to goor youre dashing to the loo more often. Progesterone changes during the menstrual cycle can alter intestinal motility, says Dr. Dweck. In other words, things can either slow down and leave you constipated, speed up and give you diarrhea, or some combination of both. Studies also show that women who suffer from digestive disorders like IBD go more often, have a greater likelihood of loose stools, and have more abdominal pain while they’re menstruating.
Get relief: Wacky bathroom happenings may be a product of your period, but it could also be because youre more apt to eat junk during this time, says Dr. Dweck. No ones telling you not to give in to a cookie or two, but maybe keep the burger-and-fry combo to a minimum. And if bowel problems are severe and dont go away after your flow finishes up, take it as a cue to talk to your doc to check if something else is going on.
You May Be More Susceptible To Yeast Infections
The pH of your vagina changes before your period and when you start bleeding, explains Dr. Dweck, which makes some women prone to an overgrowth of yeast or bacteria during this time. This can lead to yeast or bacterial infections.
Get relief: If you suffer from recurrent infections around your period, your doc will assume a pH imbalance is the cause and can prescribe hormonal birth control to help level things out. Also be aware that other things besides pH can contribute to a rise in infections, like poor eating habits , and leaving tampons in too long. So can using heavily fragranced feminine washes or soaps. Reminder: You don’t need to wash your vagina, so toss any douches, sprays, or wipes you’ve been using down there.
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You Gain Weight During Your Period
Weight gain right before and during your period is totally normal. Progesterone levels are high right before your period starts, which stimulates your appetite, which makes you eat more because you are hungry.
Next, low serotonin levels, which happen when your estrogen levels drop and your period starts, can cause cravings, which makes you eat more of the bad stuff.
Water retention is another side effect of progesterone loss your body’s blood vessels expand to accommodate more fluid, and more fluid means more weight. This might make you crave salty snacks, too, which makes you retain even MORE fluid. It’s OK though water weight goes away quickly.
Insulin resistance can be another factor in your weight gain during your period. This is because when people who are insulin resistant, right before their period have sugar cravings caused by progesterone. When you are insulin resistant, sugar is not processed normally in your body so it stays in your bloodstream longer, which contributes to weight gain.
Finally, you may notice that when you are on your period, your hormone levels fluctuate causing you to be tired, bloated, and crampy. These symptoms make you want to not move and keeps you from doing anything active .
When Should You Contact Your Healthcare Provider About Menstrual Cramps
Bad cramps keep some women from working and going to school. You dont have to suffer and you dont have to put your life on hold. Contact your healthcare provider if you have painful periods.
It may be helpful to keep track of your periods and the days on which pain is the worst so you can make a complete report. If you notice other symptoms, like headaches or heavy flows, you should keep track of those, too.
Your provider will probably ask you when you started getting your period, how long they last, if you are sexually active, if other women in your family have problems with their periods and what kinds of treatments you might have tried already.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Menstruation is normal. You might get cramps, but you dont have to suffer silently with them. There are ways to make painful periods less painful. Make sure you talk to your healthcare provider about painful periods.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 11/20/2020.
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You Suffer From Headaches And Migraines During Your Period
When you are at the end of your period, you may find that you experience some major headaches or migraines. This is because your estrogen levels decrease dramatically towards the end of your cycle. According to Alyssa Dweck, MD in an article on Health.com, more than 70% of women suffer from migraines or excruciating headaches during their period.
Your Pain Tolerance May Drop
A sharp decline in estrogen at the end of your cycle can trigger menstrual headaches or migraines, says Alyssa Dweck, MD, assistant clinical professor in the department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and an ob-gyn in Westchester County, New York. In fact, in women who suffer from migraines, up to 70% notice the head-pounders are predictably linked to their periods. The decline also makes you more susceptible to all types of pain.
Get relief: Treat pain like you would at any other time of the month: with your preferred OTC, such as Aleve , Tylenol , or Advil . And when it comes to headaches, says Dr. Dweck, it’s important to anticipate when they will happen and crush them before they start. Start taking pain meds when youre likely to get headaches for some people, drinking caffeine helps, too. You might also want to ask your doctor about hormonal birth control, but this can be hit or miss, says Dr. Dweck. Some women find it helps, while others say it makes headaches much worse, she says.
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Are Menstrual Cramps The Same As Pms
Menstrual cramps are not the same as PMS. Symptoms of PMS such as mood swings, breast soreness, and bloating happen before a womans period begins and get better when it starts. On the other hand, with dysmenorrhea, cramps are usually worse the first few days of a womans period and have a different cause and treatment.
Okay So Why Do I Get Insanely Horny On My Period
While the science isn’t entirely definitive, here’s what docs do know: “The menstrual cycle involves the cyclical rise and fall of estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and DHEA,” says Adeeti Gupta, MD, an ob-gyn and founder of Walk In GYN Care. All of those hormones play key roles in your sex drive.
In a 2013 study published in Hormones and Behavior, researchers explored the connection in a group of undergraduate women. They measured hormone levels over two full menstrual cycles and compared the results to daily journals, where the participants recorded sexual activity and feelings of friskiness.
The researchers found that changing levels of estrogen and progesterone had serious effects on libido. Likely because estrogen, which drops at the beginning of your period but then starts to climb steadily by day two or three, promotes libido and desire, explains Dr. Gupta.
Meanwhile, progesterone, a stabilizing hormone that is “not sexy-feeling friendly” is at a low point, says Dr. Minkin, so it’s possible that you feel even more sexual in its absence, too.
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I Have Nausea After Period Am I Pregnant
Being pregnant may be the first thing that comes to mind when you experience nausea after period. Often, it is wrong to come to this conclusion. While only a pregnancy test will assure you of not being pregnant, there are several explanations as to why nausea can come about even when the periods are gone.
The main causes for nausea after the periods include excessive amounts of prostaglandins in the blood, infections in the gut, medicines and others. However, it would be paradoxical to say you are pregnant yet you just had your periods. Having a period means that the egg for that particular cycle was not fertilized.
However, it is easy to mistake implantation bleeding or ovulatory spotting with periods. The implantation bleeding is a small amount of blood but it means you are pregnant and the fertilized egg is being implanted into the wall of the uterus. As stated earlier, the best way to know is to take a pregnancy test.
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Don’t panic if you notice brown discharge typically this happens when your uterus is expelling the first few bits or last little bits of period blood, causing your discharge to have a brown tint to it. Completely normal.
But keep in mind: if you experience green, yellow, or a strong-smelling discharge, definitely consult your doctor to make sure everything’s healthy down there. Things like yeast infections and other conditions can cause discharge that you’ll need to clear up with medication.
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How To Alleviate Period Sickness
If menstrual nausea has you feeling down, dont worry there are several ways to treat it. There are several possible causes of nausea during menstruation:
- Changes in the levels of hormones that sometimes initiate the overproduction of gastric juice, which contains hydrochloric acid
- Your bodys reaction to the release of prostaglandins, which cause cramping not only in the uterus but also in the stomach
You can make some dietary changes to help you with nausea. Avoid fatty or spicy foods , avoid intense odors, and stay hydrated. Ginger, chamomile, and mint tea may help calm your stomach. Take small sips of cold, clear, carbonated, or sour drinks.
You can also try an antacid. It can help alleviate symptoms by neutralizing hydrochloric acid.
Relieving the cramps may also relieve your nausea. Applying heat may reduce pain in your lower abdomen. Physical activity may also ease your pain in some cases.
If these methods are not enough, you can try over-the-counter or prescription pain medicine from your health care provider. Make sure to consult with your health care provider before taking any medication.
So Is My Period Horniness **totally** Dependent On My Hormones
Nope, not at all! Feeling frisky during your period may also just come down to individual differences, says Wise.
“Women might like sex more or a whole lot less during that time, depending on their physical comfort,” she says. “For some women, when theyre bleeding and crampy, the last thing they want is sex. Others, on the other hand, want sexual activity for relief.”
Your increased desire to have sex on your period could also be tied to a subconscious relief in knowing you’re not pregnant . You’re also less likely to conceive when you’re menstruatingand there’s “definitely a psychological freedom” in that knowledge, says Brito.
So while your shifting hormones definitely rule the show, your head can get in there too. But if you dont feel particularly horny during that time of the month, dont worry: There is nothingI repeat, nothingwrong with you.
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Things That Mess With Your Period
Wouldn’t it be great if you could circle a date on your calendar and have your period actually show up then? You’d plan beach trips around it and you’d never be caught without a tampon. Unfortunately, a little variation is typical: “The average cycle is 28 daysthat’s 28 days between the first day of one period and the first day of your next periodbut anywhere in between 24 and 31 days is considered normal,” says Veronica Lerner, MD, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at NYU Langone Medical Center. “Still, a highly irregular period is usually a sign that something else isn’t right in your body.” Take note of these 10 things that could be messing with your menstrual cycle, and see your doc if anything seems too far off.
Heard of marathon runners losing their periods? It’s not a myth: frequent rigorous exercise combined with low body fat puts stress on your body, and this stress tells your brain to stop producing reproductive hormones. “Since you can’t nourish a baby under extreme stress, your body temporarily shuts down the production of fertility hormones,” explains Dr. Lerner. One study found that half of exercising women experience subtle menstrual irregularity. A period that arrives a few days off schedule is nothing to worry about, but see your doctor if you haven’t had your period for longer than three months. “It’s a condition called amenorrhea, and it can compromise your bone density long-term,” says Dr. Lerner.