MENSTRUATION AND MENSTRUAL PAINS
It’s good to have you here. My name is Olivia Onyemaobi, I am a community health advocate with menstruation and its management as my focal point. I will be using the simplest terms, so you ma not be hearing things like definitions
So, how does menstruation start?
Every month, the walls of the uterus get thicker, preparing your body for conception. The uterus is where the baby stays when conceived in a woman, so if eventually the person doesn't sleep with a man during ovulation, the thickened walls which are tissues like will be shed off in the form of blood through the vagina.
This keep happening every month, and any month the girl/woman has sexual intercourse with a man during ovulation, pregnancy will occur, but when not, you will still shed the tissues off as period
So if one is menstruating for the first year, the period may not be regular, it may sometimes cease for 2-3months, then reappears. This also happens when a woman is going into menopause for the first 3 years. Menopause is the age when women don't menstruate this is because your body is adjusting to accommodate the hormone responsible for menstruation
Usually, some people feel pain few days before the period flows or when the period starts flowing, it is because you have contraction to allow the flow of blood. The prostaglandin is a hormone responsible for contraction in women, so the level of prostaglandin hormone your body is able to release is what determines your pain. The higher the prostaglandin level, the more the pain, that is why some people have more pain than others and that is also why you have more pain in some months than others.
Other things that may make your period to be irregular/delayed are: stress. Stress can be in the form of physical exercise, long distant travel, etc. This stress distorts the hormonal framework; also excessive loss of weight can cause it. For some of you who are anxious loose weight, take am easy oo. Emotional problems i.e When you are not stable it can affect your period.
Also infections can do that. I will suspend talking deeply about infection now, because we will talk extensively about it later. Most girls/women have yeast & UT infections and that is the reason for increased kidney problems
Now the kind of food you eat can also increase the level of prostaglandins in your body, one of them is ginger. Ginger increases the level of prostaglandins in the body and causes excessive flow, but also reduces menstrual pain. So we advice that you can take ginger few days maybe 2 days before menstruation but don't take it during menstruation
Also, you have to avoid any food that can increase your sugar level as that can cause excessive flow and pain, food with high content of sugar can raise your blood sugar level immediately, so please do avoid it. Also, do avoid excessive exercise during period.
So when you are having period pain what do you do?
To ease menstrual cramp/pain
· Do a mild exercise, one of which is lay on your back and raise your knees to your chest, this helps relaxes the muscles and help the blood flow easily
· Also you can take a warm bath or tea, this will help you loosen the tick blood, just like you know what warm water will do to an ice block
· You can also take pain relieve drugs
· You can also massage your lower abdomen and waist as that can help relax your muscles too
I need to also mention that if you enjoy too much salt, you might consider reducing it because it can also increase your blood pressure, not just only sugar.
So other severe cases is when you have menstrual cramp more than 72 hours, like I said earlier, infection may cause an increased menstrual pain
Some of the conditions are: pelvic inflammatory diseases, where a bacterial that started in the uterus spreads to other reproductive organs. I remember I explained what an uterus is earlier when we started
Others are reproductive tract infection, urinary tract infection, endometriosis- where the tissues lining the uterus is outside, stenosis i.e narrowing of the cervix, inner walls of the uterus may have growth (fibroid), etc