We sat down with our Consultant Gynaecologist and Obstetrician, Dr Maiti, to find out the answers to the gynaecological questions that you’ve always wondered about…
Should I be worried if my period cycle is slightly off?
The average menstrual cycle is 28 days. However, regular menstrual cycles can vary from 21 to 35 days and your period may not occur at the same time each month, so you don’t need to worry straight away.
But if you notice that your periods have suddenly become irregular and you’re under 45 or have other concerns about your menstrual cycle, it is important to see your GP.
Is it normal to have an increased sex drive whilst on my period?
Your sex drive is influenced by some of the same hormones that fluctuate with your cycle, like estrogen and progesterone. You may find your desire tends to increase in the days leading up to ovulation and decrease shortly after ovulation is over. Some woman do feel more sexual desire during periods which is normal and could be because there’s less risk of having any unplanned pregnancy during this period.
Is it normal to feel extremely tired when I’m on my period?
Many women feel tired during their periods due to changes in their hormones and dealing with pain or discomfort such as cramps.
If your tiredness is affecting your ability to carry out everyday activities, it’s important to see your GP. Excessive tiredness during your periods, especially when accompanied by heavy vaginal bleeding, could be a sign of anaemia. Anaemia if diagnosed is very easy to correct with diet and medications.
Is a tampon safe to use?
Wearing a tampon correctly is safe, as long as you follow the recommended advice and don’t leave the tampon in for more than six to eight hours.
After eight hours, your risk of developing an infection or irritating your vagina increases. In very rare cases, leaving a tampon in for too long, usually when it is forgotten about, can cause a severe bacterial infection called toxic shock syndrome (TSS), which can be life-threatening.
How often should I change my pad?
How heavy your menstrual flow is will depend on how often you need to change your pad. This varies for each woman, but the general advice is to change your paid every four to eight hours. Having some itchiness whilst on your period and using pads is common due to a slightly increased risk of thrush infection.
Is it just a coincidence that my friend and I have the same cycle?
Many women who live together or spend a lot of time together feel as though they have periods around the same time. This is known as menstrual syncing.
It has been suggested that this is due to pheromones they release that synchronise their menstrual cycles. However, there’s no clinical research to back up this theory.
Why do I crave junk food when I’m on my period?
Changes in your hormone levels during your periods can cause your body to crave foods high in carbohydrates and sugars, which are often found in junk food.
Some studies suggest that eating these foods releases the hormone serotonin in your body, which helps you feel happy and combat low moods caused by hormonal changes just before and during your period.
It’s possible that highly processed junk foods can promote inflammation, which could lead to worse period pain.
If you are concerned about missed periods, unusual pain or bleeding or anything else and want to speak to a GP you can book a private today by using our online enquiry form.