Yoppie, the pioneers of personalised period care, have highlighted some of the most common period problems that should not be ignored, from excessive bleeding to significant breast tenderness.
For many women, periods can be difficult at the best of times. Even when everything is as it should be, discomfort and PMS symptoms can be part and parcel of the experience. And while most of these symptoms are completely normal and nothing to be concerned about, there are several period problems that should definitely not be ignored because they might indicate that something isn’t quite right.
Excessive or intense bleeding
While the level of bleeding during a period varies significantly from one person to another, sometimes excessive blood flow cannot be ignored.
If, for example, bleeding through a tampon takes less than an hour or two, or if blood clots larger than a 10p coin are being passed, or if bleeding lasts more than a week, it could be pointing to something of concern.
Losing too much blood can lead to anaemia, which often comes with additional symptoms of fatigue and physical weakness. Too much bleeding can also be a symptom of other health issues such as uterine fibroids, uterine polyps, or cervical polyps. If bleeding is intense or lasts longer than expected, and especially if accompanied by weakness and fatigue, a doctor should definitely be consulted, even if just for peace of mind.
Excessive or unusual pain
If bad period pains last for more than a few days or result in being bedridden, they shouldn’t be ignored. This is especially true if pain and/or cramps cannot be eased with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicine as this could point to issues with the reproductive system.
Slight pain or tenderness of the breasts is perfectly normal during a period, but it’s worth consulting a doctor if the pain continues after the period, or is accompanied by unfamiliar lumps and/or changes in feel and appearance of the nipple area.
Surprise period and absence of period – Irregular periods are not uncommon and can be caused by something as simple as stress, but if a period comes as a surprise, it’s worth consulting a doctor as it can occasionally point towards health concerns such as thyroid issues, premature ovarian failure, PCOS, and uterine polyps.
It is also possible to miss periods altogether, perhaps due to stress or even over-exercise. It could, however, indicate pregnancy so it’s worth checking out rather than ignoring. Certain birth control methods can affect the regularity and duration of periods, too, so it might be that an alternative pill, for example, is required.
Spotting during a period is normal, certainly in the early weeks of a new birth control method. But spotting outside of a period shouldn’t be ignored – it could be a symptom of fibroids, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or, in rare cases, cervical cancer. Consult a doctor if only for peace of mind.
There are common and perfectly normal explanations for all of the above period problems and most of the time they’ll be nothing serious and nothing to worry about. But consulting a doctor will help nip any issues in the bud and, should it be something more serious, enable swift and decisive action to be taken.
It could also be well worth reviewing your period care regime and this could have an impact on how you feel and how your body reacts during your period. For example, many non-organic period care products contain carbon disulfide, toluene and m,p-Xylene which are reproductive toxicants. Methyl ethyl ketone, ethyl acetate and heptane which can cause irritation. Hexane, which is a neurotoxin, as well as methylene chloride which is carcinogenic.
So it could well be your body telling you it’s time to change by reacting to your tampon or pad.
You could also supplement your period care products with supplements themselves, helping to target the most common symptoms of PMS by reducing mood swings, cramps, headaches, breast tenderness, bloating and fatigue.
Yoppie has you covered with a range of organic tampons and pads, as well as three supplements specifically targeted at different PMS problems, all of which can be delivered through your letterbox.
Founder of Yoppie, Daniella Peri, believes it could be the latter.
“Our periods can be a bit daunting, particularly when they first start and so it’s completely natural to have concerns. They are also incredibly unique and so while you might be concerned that you’re bleeding more or for longer, compared to your friends, it’s often nothing to worry about.
As with anything in life, the best option is to seek medical advice if you think something isn’t quite right and this will enable you to catch any serious issues as early as possible or provide you with some peace of mind that nothing is up.”