An abnormal menstrual flow can be one of the most frustrating gynecological concerns you can have in your reproductive years. Normal menstruation should last up to seven days. However, an irregular period may last longer than expected, even up to 21days. Fortunately, your medical expert can suggest treatment options to help relieve your symptoms. The professional team at Ideal Gynecology, LLC deals with various issues affecting women, including irregular periods in McDonough. Besides irregular periods, the other menstruation problems you are likely to have include missing several periods in a row, heavy menses, and periods that last longer than they should.
What are the possible causes of irregular periods?
There are various causes of irregular periods, and they range from mild to severe. They include:
- Birth control pills. The medications have a combination of estrogen and progestin hormones that prevent your ovaries from producing and releasing eggs. An on-and-off use of birth control pills will likely affect your menstrual flow. For instance, you might bleed between periods when you take birth control pills that only have the progestin hormone. Irregular or missed periods for approximately six months are common effects, especially after using birth control pills.
- Endometriosis. You are likely to have this condition when your uterine lining grows outside your uterus. Endometriosis will cause you to have cramps and painful symptoms before or during your menstrual flow. Additionally, you may also experience a heavy flow and pain during sex.
- Uterine growths (fibroids and polyps). While polyps are tiny benign growths in your uterine lining, fibroids may range from small to more significant growths. Though most of the growths are noncancerous, they might result in a heavy flow or painful menses. The large fibroids may also cause discomfort when they exert pressure on your rectum or bladder.
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). The bacterial infection that affects your reproductive system may pass through your vagina during intercourse and spread to other parts of your reproductive system, including your uterus. Common symptoms of PID include a foul vaginal discharge that is heavy, irregular periods, pelvic floor pain and nausea.
- Premature ovarian insufficiency. This condition is most likely to affect you if you are under 40 years old and your ovaries are not efficient in their functions. Your menstrual cycle stops when you have premature ovarian insufficiency, resulting in abnormal periods.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). PCOS forces your ovaries to produce significant amounts of androgens (male hormones). The hormonal changes may prevent your eggs from reaching maturity, causing irregular periods or stopping your menses.
Other causes of irregular menses include lifestyle choices like diet and body weight, or stress-like illnesses and disruptions that are likely to impact your menstrual flow.
When should you contact your gynecologist for help?
Though sometimes irregular periods might not be a concern, do not hesitate to contact your gynecologist for professional help when you have symptoms like:
- Unusual heavy bleeding
- Periods lasting more than a week
- Severe pain during or between your periods
- High fever
- Foul vaginal discharge
- Nausea during your menses
- Irregular menses after regular periods
- High fever
- Spotting or vaginal bleeding between menses or after menopause
You might also seek professional help if you have irregular bleeding and suspect you might be pregnant.
Contact your gynecologist at Ideal Gynecology, LLC for more inquiries about irregular menses.