Reasons for Menstrual Period Symptoms
Studies indicate that almost 80% women suffer the effects of
menstrual discomforts. The world over women experience some typical
symptoms of menstrual period flow. But we first need to know the
mechanics behind the activity to understand why these symptoms
appear and what makes them such a problem.
Every month a woman's ovaries release one egg into her uterus.
This egg stays there , waiting to be fertilized, and after a few
days, is discharged from the uterus along with its tissue lining .
This was the lining that had been prepared by nature to create a
soft, warm cocoon for the fetus that would have been conceived had
the egg got fertilised. This is nature's own baby basket and its
But when the egg doesn't get fertilized, and is expelled from
the body with a bloody vaginal discharge, this is called the
menstrual flow. This process is called menstruation. As this blood,
tissue and the egg flow out from the vagina, they cause some
physical discomfort but most of the pain associated with the
menstrual flow is largely hormones related.
Menstrual Period Symptoms
The most common symptom of menstruation is the pain in the
abdomen. In many cases this is located at the lower abdomen or
lower back area. The pain usually starts from a couple of days
before the actual flow starts and is generally referred to as PMS -
Pre-Menstrual Syndrome. There are other symptoms that are equally
discomforting but until very recently it was dismissed as female
drivel , fuss over a pain that is nowhere else except for in the
imagination. But science has now established that discomforts and
pain during the menstrual flow are not psychological, they have
very physical roots. Most of these pains are caused by dramatically
fluctuating hormone levels in the body. Whoever said that the
ability to give birth would come easy?
The pain or menstrual cramps usually come because during the
first five days of the menstrual period, the uterus is contracting
in spasms, in order to shed the lining. The pain is a much milder
form of what she will experience during childbirth, also a
contractions- led activity. The muscle contractions here are cause
by a chemical called prostaglandins. This hormone causes the
muscles of the uterus to contract for a longer period of time,
sometimes depriving it of oxygen. This is what causes menstrual
Then after 14 days, the hormonal level changes to prepare for
the release of the next egg. The hormone levels of both estrogen
and progesterone keep rising till about 4 days before the next
period, and then, if fertilization has not taken place, they fall.
This sudden change causes more irritation and emotional imbalance
in a woman. People refer this discomfort to, when they talk about
'that time of the month'.
Around the time ovulation happens there is a pain in the back,
abdomen or even dizziness. Just about a week before the actual
menstrual period flow starts, the woman may experience bloating.
This is water retention on legs and around the middle, sometimes
even the face. The other symptoms are breast tenderness, decreased
activity levels and lack of sleep. Some women also experience
changes in appetite while some others break out in acne. There
sometimes seems to be a slight loss of coordination, so many women
experience trouble in driving in this PMS state. A woman
approaching this time usually experiences attacks of anxiety and
social withdrawal. The most common of all symptoms, is irritability
or moodiness, depression and angry outbursts. Nausea, headache, gas
in the abdomen, indigestion and sometimes even diarrhea are common
symptoms and pains of menstrual period. If these pains get more
severe than normal, they are taken to be a disorder called
The bad news is that menstrual pain and discomfort does not
spare any woman who is in the fertile age bracket, usually between
12 and 51. Class, culture, body type, even race make no