How Menstruation Might Feel
Many people feel uncomfortable, tired, and have a negative mood during menstruation. Fortunately, there are lots of medicines and foods that can help with this.
Some people who have intense cramps during their period often use pain-relieving medication. Others apply heating pads on their lower back and abdomen to ease cramping pains.
Your period might last longer than average or be more intense. This is typically nothing to worry about, but its a good idea to talk to a health care provider about it to confirm that there arent any health issues affecting your periods. Dietary changes can help compensate for the loss of nutrients from heavy bleeding.
Icipants And Eligibility Criteria
A total of 953 SWAN participants were initially enrolled in the DHS substudy. For these analyses, only women who completed at least one DHS collection and who had an observed date of FMP within 10 years after the DHS10 collection were included . Cycles were included in hormone analysis regardless of whether the collection began with a bleed. Analyses of cycle length included only visits with known cycle length that is, if urine collection began and ended with a bleed or if cycle start and end could be determined from reported menstrual bleeding dates cycle length was truncated at 50 days for two women. Analyses excluded women with hysterectomy or bilateral oophorectomy, those who used reproductive hormones before their FMP, and those not yet postmenopausal by DHS10. Disposition of DHS participants is described in .
The study was approved by the Institutional Review Boards affiliated with all participating sites. Written informed consent was obtained from each participant.
Racial/ethnic Differences In Cycles And Hormones
Adjusting for years before FMP, the probability of having an ELA cycle was similar for white, Japanese, and Chinese women and lower for African American and Hispanic women . Additional adjustment for region, concurrent smoking, and concurrent BMI reduced statistical significance , but the pattern of racial/ethnic differences remained similar: adjusted % ELA was 62.2% for Hispanic subjects, 69.6% for African American subjects, 79.7% for white subjects, 83.7% for Japanese subjects, and 84.3% for Chinese subjects. The interaction of race/ethnicity and years before FMP was not statistically significant because ELA cycles were less prevalent for African American and Hispanic women consistently over the interval FMP-10 years to FMP. Although the interaction of race/ethnicity with categorized BMI was not statistically significant , there was a suggestion of effect modification by BMI such that ethnic differences were largest in the obese category. Chinese and Japanese women were most likely and African American and Hispanic women were least likely to have an ELA cycle only in this BMI category.
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Hormones And The Menstrual Cycle
The menstrual cycle is complex and is controlled by many different glands and the hormones that these glands produce. A brain structure called the hypothalamus causes the nearby pituitary gland to produce certain chemicals, which prompt the ovaries to produce the sex hormones oestrogen and progesterone.
The menstrual cycle is a biofeedback system, which means each structure and gland is affected by the activity of the others.
What Is The Normal Time Range For The Follicular Phase
The average menstrual cycle lasts from 28 to 35 days. The follicular phase ranges from 14 to 21 days. The luteal phase lasts about 14 days. Unlike the luteal phase, which stays fairly consistent, the length of your follicular phase may vary at different stages of your life.
The length of your follicular phase depends on how long it takes the dominant follicle to form a fully matured egg.
Long follicular phase
Having a long follicular phase doesnt mean youre less likely to become pregnant. A long follicular phase most likely means that your menstrual cycle is longer, too. You can have a long follicular phase for a variety of reasons:
- Its just your bodys normal timetable.
- Youre taking birth control thats lengthening your follicular phase.
- You have a vitamin D deficiency.
Short follicular phase
A short follicular phase could indicate that you may have trouble becoming pregnant. Its common for your follicular phase to shorten as you approach menopause. Menopause signals a shift in your life when you no longer get your period.
Starting in your late 30s, your FSH levels may still increase during your follicular phase, but your LH levels may not spike as they did previously. As a result, the follicle may mature faster than the egg inside and release it too soon. These eggs may not be viable for pregnancy.
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Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About An Fsh Levels Test
There is an at-home test that measures FSH levels in urine. The kit is designed for women who want to find out if certain symptoms such as irregular periods, vaginal dryness, and hot flashes may be due to menopause or perimenopause. The test can show whether you have high FSH levels, a sign of menopause or perimenopause. But it doesn’t diagnose either condition. After taking the test, you should talk with your health care provider about the results.
Hormones And Your Menstrual Cycle
Chioma Ndubisi, MD, is a board-certified OB/GYN who specializes in sexual and reproductive health in New York, New York.
Your menstrual cycle is controlled by hormone signals in the brain. Each month, your ovary will release an egg after the egg has matured. The egg enters into the fallopian tube and makes its way down to the uterus with hopes that a sperm will fertilize it. Your monthly menstrual cycle begins on the first day of your period and lasts until the first day of your next period.
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The Way The Follicular Stage May Be
A lot of people report a positive mood during the period between 7 and 14 days of the cycle. For certain people, confidence increases little between days six and thirteen of the cycle because of the increase in testosterone and estrogen levels. If this is your case then you should arrange your schedule to be in the best mood for meetings or job interviews.
The levels of hormones on the days 6-14 of the cycle may influence the scent of your skin and affect the way perfumes and scents affect each person’s personal chemical.
What Happens When Estrogen Levels Are Consistently High
Excess estrogen in your body can be associated with multiple conditions: polyps, fibroids, PCOS, endometriosis pain, ovarian tumors, etc.). Your levels may be high because you have too much estrogen in relation to your other sex hormone, progesterone. Medications youre taking that contain estrogen may cause you to have too much of it in your body.
Symptoms may include:
- Weight gain, especially in your waist and hips.
- Irregular periods .
- Worsening symptoms associated with PMS or PMDD.
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Hormones And The Follicular Phase
The Starting Place
- Everything begins with when the hypothalamus produces the gonadotropin-releasing hormone .
- Once produced, the GnRH will then trigger your pituitary gland to release the follicle stimulating hormone . This hormone’s job is to stimulate the growth and development of your eggs.
The Follicle Stimulating Hormone
- The FSH then makes the journey through your bloodstream to your ovaries.
- Once the follicle stimulating hormone arrives, it triggers the growth of a follicle to develop into a mature egg.
The Role of the Follicle
- As the follicle develops and matures, it produces the hormone, estrogen.
- After about 10 days, the estrogen levels reach high numbers.
- The estrogen level peaks approximately one day before ovulation .
- This estrogen peak tells the brain that the egg has matured and triggers the pituitary gland to release a surge of luteinizing hormone .
The LH Surge
- This LH surge acts as a cue to the ovarian follicle.
- About 24-36 hours after the LH surge, a mature egg breaks out of the ovary and is released into the fallopian tubethis is ovulation.
- The egg leaves behind the corpus luteum .
What Is The Luteinising Hormone
Luteinising hormone, like a follicle-stimulating hormone, is a gonadotrophic hormone produced and released by cells in the anterior pituitary gland.
It is crucial in regulating the function of the testes in men and ovaries in women.
In women, the luteinising hormone carries out different roles in the two halves of the menstrual cycle. In weeks one to two of the cycle, luteinising hormone is required to stimulate the ovarian follicles in the ovary to produce the female sex hormone, oestradiol.
Around day 14 of the cycle, a surge in luteinising hormone levels causes the ovarian follicle to tear and release a mature oocyte from the ovary, a process called ovulation.
For the remainder of the cycle , the remnants of the ovarian follicle form a corpus luteum.
The luteinising hormone stimulates the corpus luteum to produce progesterone, which is required to support the early stages of pregnancy if fertilisation occurs.
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What Role Does Estrogen Play In Reproductive Health For Women Or Dfab
Estrogen, like all hormones, is a chemical messenger. It tells your body when to start and stop processes affecting your sexual and reproductive health. These processes cause important changes in your body.
Estrogen levels rise during puberty. The increase leads to secondary sex characteristics like breasts and changes in overall body composition .
Along with hormones made in your brain and progesterone, estrogen plays an important part in your menstrual cycle. These hormones coexist in a delicate balance to keep your periods regular. Estrogen plays a role in ovulation and thickens the lining of your uterus to prepare it for pregnancy.
Pregnancy & Fertility
Estrogen peaks in the days leading up to ovulation. This is your most fertile period. At the same time, estrogen thins your cervical mucus, a fluid sperm has to swim through to reach and fertilize an egg. These estrogen-induced changes make it easier for you to become pregnant if you have intercourse.
Regardless of where you are in your menstrual cycle, the presence of estrogen makes it more comfortable to have intercourse. It keeps your vaginal walls thick, elastic and lubricated, reducing pain associated with penetrative sex.
The primary estrogen in your body changes from estradiol to estrone during menopause.
The Ovulatory Phase Happens Around The Mid
Mood and hormones: With the continued levels of high oestrogen, it’s most likely that you will still be feeling sharp, optimistic and motivated, but this could be coupled with some anxiety, brought on by your heightened emotions.
Sex: Testosterone will now begin to rise as you head towards ovulation day, which may mean you are feeling more sexual desire. However, so many factors can affect this, from relationships to health and your environment it goes beyond just hormones.
Exercise: You might consider a little comfort to your work environment, get up and stretch your body. Depending on your mobility start with toe touches, shoulder rolls or head tilts. Be mindful of your back if you have had problems in that area before.
Nutrition: Temper bad PMS with serotonin-boosting activities such as eating complex carbohydrates , and anything that makes you feel good.
Sleep:If you have been sensitive to the shift in your hormones, it’s likely you could be feeling more reserved and insular this evening. If your energy feels lower, you may find it helpful to give your body time to rest and reset with a long night’s sleep.
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How Does The Female Reproductive System Work
The female reproductive system provides several functions. The ovaries produce the egg cells, called the ova or oocytes. The oocytes are then transported to the fallopian tube where fertilization by a sperm may occur. The fertilized egg then moves to the uterus, where the uterine lining has thickened in response to the normal hormones of the reproductive cycle. Once in the uterus, the fertilized egg can implant into thickened uterine lining and continue to develop. If implantation does not take place, the uterine lining is shed as menstrual flow. In addition, the female reproductive system produces female sex hormones that maintain the reproductive cycle.
During menopause, the female reproductive system gradually stops making the female hormones necessary for the reproductive cycle to work. At this point, menstrual cyclescan become irregular and eventually stop. One year after menstrual cycles stop, the woman is considered to be menopausal.
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What Is The Follicular Phase Of The Menstrual Cycle
The follicular phase refers to that part of your menstrual cycle when an egg matures in your ovaries. Its part of an ongoing process in your body during your reproductive years when hormones activate changes in your body that make it possible for you to become pregnant.
Your menstrual cycle consists of two phases: the follicular phase and the luteal phase. Menstruation and ovulation are important events during your cycle that correspond with each phase.
- During menstruation, or your period, you shed your uterus lining through your vagina. The follicular phase begins on the first day you menstruate. It lasts until ovulation, when one of your ovaries releases a mature egg.
- During the follicular phase, fluid-filled sacs in your ovaries called follicles house immature eggs. One of these follicles, the dominant follicle, houses an egg thats bigger and healthier than the rest. The follicular phase is the longest phase of your menstrual cycle.
- During ovulation, your ovary releases the egg that matured during the follicular phase. It begins its journey to your fallopian tubes. Ovulation marks the end of the follicular phase and the beginning of the luteal phase.
- During the luteal phase, the dominant follicle that released the mature egg changes into a structure called the corpus luteum. The corpus luteum produces important pregnancy hormones. If you dont get pregnant, the corpus luteum will disappear, and youll shed your uterus lining .
With menstruation, the cycle repeats.
Where Is Estrogen Located In The Body
Your ovaries make most of your estrogen during your reproductive years. Your adrenal glands and adipose tissue secrete estrogen, too. The placenta secretes estrogen during pregnancy.
Once its released, estrogen travels through the bloodstream until it reaches the part of your body that needs to be spurred into action. There, estrogen binds to a protein, called an estrogen receptor, that gets the process moving. Estrogen receptors are located throughout your body.
What Are The Common Conditions And Disorders Associated With Estrogen
Estrogen plays a role in most conditions that fall under the umbrella of womens health. Some of the most common include:
Research is ongoing about estrogen’s role in conditions affecting other body systems. For instance, estrogen has been linked to some endocrine disorders and gastrointestinal diseases.
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Understanding The Monthly Cycle Can Improve Symptoms
Heres how to improve symptoms by getting to know the menstrual cycle.
- Tracking cycles using a calendar can help some people better anticipate symptoms.
- Noting personal observations on a calendar can show which diet, skin care, and other changes have an effect on symptoms.
- Changes in blood glucose levels and insulin resistance due to fluctuations of progesterone can affect appetite. Knowing how hormonal changes affect insulin and tracking your appetite changes and cravings can help you monitor your health.
What Do The Results Mean
The meaning of your results will depend on whether you are a woman, man, or child.
If you are a woman, high FSH levels may mean you have:
- Primary ovarian insufficiency , also known as premature ovarian failure. POI is the loss of ovarian function before the age of 40.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome , a common hormonal disorder affecting childbearing women. It is one of the leading causes of female infertility.
- Started menopause or are in perimenopause
- An ovarian tumor
- Turner syndrome, a genetic disorder that affects sexual development in females. It often causes infertility.
If you are a woman, low FSH levels may mean:
- Your ovaries are not making enough eggs.
- Your pituitary gland is not working correctly.
- You have a problem with your hypothalamus, a part of the brain that controls the pituitary gland and other important body functions.
- You are very underweight.
If you are a man, high FSH levels may mean:
- Your testicles have been damaged due to chemotherapy, radiation, infection, or alcohol abuse.
- You have Klinefelter syndrome, a genetic disorder affects sexual development in males. It often causes infertility.
If you are a man, low FSH levels may mean you have a disorder of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus.
In children, high FSH levels, along with high levels of luteinizing hormone, may mean puberty is about to start or has already started. If this is happening before age 9 in a girl or before age 10 in a boy , it may be a sign of:
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Hormone Synthesis Is Maintained Throughout The Menopausal Transition
As women age, their follicles appear to be larger early in the cycle and to develop more rapidly , but their growth rate is overall slower than the growth rate in younger women . Peripheral , though not local, production of key granulosa cell products, inhibin A and B, is impaired, often before women note anything more than subtle changes in their menstrual pattern . In older women, ovarian follicles contain fewer granulosa cells , but they produce proportionately more estradiol due to increased aromatase activity . Thus, the follicle appears to possess some compensatory mechanisms that preserve midreproductive aged hormone patterns. Progressively rising FSH levels maintain follicle growth, enhance aromatase, and shorten the follicular phase by several days , despite the smaller numbers of granulosa cells and follicles available. When ovulation occurs, overall Pdg production is not maintained, and relative luteal insufficiency is observed . Nonetheless, that the overall patterns of LH, FSH, estradiol, and progesterone in ELA cycles are maintained nearly to the very end of reproductive life in women is truly remarkable. However, because our measure of urinary estrone conjugates includes both estrone and estradiol, we may have underestimated the amount of change in estradiol across the DHS because estrone is a far more abundant hormone in the circulation of women.