This article is about the common Menstrual Cycle symptoms.
The term menstrual cycle refers to the various physiological changes occurring in fertile females. In most women the menstrual cycle is composed of 28 days. These 28 days can be divided in to the first 14 days which are referred to as the follicular phase and the latter 14 to the 28th day which is referred to as the Luteal phase. Your menstrual cycle is completely under the control of hormones – those secreted by the pituitary and the ovaries. The hormones secreted by the pituitary are FSH which stands for the Follicle Stimulating Hormone and LH which in turn stands for the Luteinizing Hormone. The ovarian hormones playing an important role in menstruation are Estrogen and Progesterone.
The first 5 days of the menstrual cycle are referred to as Menstruation. During menstruation the uterus sheds its inner lining – the endometrium. Hence women have bleeding from the vagina which lasts on an average for 4 to 5 days. The amount of bleeding varies in each and every woman. However excess of bleeding and passage of many clots or extremely scanty bleeding, both are considered as abnormal and you may need to be investigated further. Most women lose almost 60 to 80 ml of blood during each menstrual cycle. If you complain of bleeding in excess of this amount you must visit your doctor. Some women complain of premenstrual syndrome.
Premenstrual syndrome refers to various problems that women experience prior to the onset of menstruation. You may suffer for around a week to a few days before menstruation. Also it is not necessary that all women suffer from this syndrome, and the intensity of the problems too varies widely. You may complain of water retention and swelling all over the body or in your feet. Some women complain of pain in the breasts and tenderness prior to menstruation. Others experience mood swings, irritability, agitation, restlessness and become cranky. Few women experience depression and become emotionally sensitive. You may complain of changes in your sexual drive as well. Few women also experience worsening of their migraine headaches prior to the onset of menstruation.
Once menstruation begins you may continue to experience the Menstrual Cycle symptoms you had pre-menstrually and they slowly wane in intensity. Apart from these symptoms some women complain of dysmenorrhoea – which refers to cramping pains felt in the lower abdomen. You may also complain of diarrhea, fatigue, perspiration and pain in the vagina. Some women also complain of nausea and vomiting.
Following menstruation you may be relatively asymptomatic until ovulation. Infact most women do not complain of any discomfort during ovulation as well. In between menstruation and ovulation however, scanty vaginal discharge is common. Ovulation occurs roughly 14 days after the first day of your menstruation. During ovulation you may complain of slight discomfort in your lower abdomen. Your vaginal discharge too becomes more profuse and slightly more watery. Some women may experience slight vaginal bleeding during ovulation. Fourteen days following ovulation you are bound to begin with signs of premenstrual syndrome, followed by menstruation and the beginning of another menstrual cycle.
There you have it, all the symptoms of menstrual cycle.
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