Light or heavy periods? A gynaecologist reveals what determines menstrual flow

Published on: 25 June 2022, 19:00 pm IST

Most women suffer from either too light or too heavy periods. Hence, here we are to answer all your queries about menstrual flow.

Avnii Bagaria
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menstrual flow
Know your periods well. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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For every woman, her period is an extremely important part of her monthly cycle. It is the shedding of the endometrium that develops each menstrual cycle to aid in a possible pregnancy. Since the period can be a significant mark of a woman’s well-being, figuring out the level of menstrual flow that leaves the body each cycle is something that most women are concerned about. That implies how frequently the period occurs, how light or heavy it is, and for how long it occurs. Come, let’s get to know about your period flow.

Changes in your period cycle

Periods and the menstrual flow cycle keeps altering after they initially start (menarche), then after pregnancy, and surprisingly during the end (perimenopause). Around these events, not ovulating consistently (anovulation) sometimes is a typical reason for briefly missing or having heavy feminine periods. In the event that a female doesn’t ovulate each cycle, she might miss a period, or it might come later than expected.

menstrual hygeine day
A heavy flow is not always a cause of concern. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Apart from those life events, for the most part, the menstrual flow for a woman is about the same length and volume each cycle. However, they can only change briefly in light of things like pressure, exercise, diet, or taking a crisis contraception pill (a next-day contraceptive). Not just that, periods and uterine draining can also vary due to specific ailments such as uterine polyps, fibroids, or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)—conditions that should be addressed with your medical care provider. Certain draining circumstances, drugs, and contamination, can likewise influence periods and cause sporadic spotting.

Also, read: Does a light period flow mean reduced fertility? An expert answers

So girls, if you are irritated to sometimes have light menstrual flow and sometimes heavy, then you should know that while it is normal, it can also be concerning and unhealthy in some cases. So why does the flow of periods change? What determines the flow of periods? Or what is “normal” flow?

We have a gynaecologist to answer all your questions about menstrual flow:

What determines heavy or light periods?

“In the event that your chemical levels are not adjusted, your body can make the internal covering of the uterus (endometrium) excessively thick, which leads to heavy bleeding. Light periods can be the result of a variety of causes like age factor, being extremely underweight, pregnancy, breast feeding, PCOS, over exercising,” Dr Pooja Sahni, consultant gynaecologist, Altius Hospital, Bengaluru, tells Health Shots.

Why does the flow of time change?

A few variables can change a female’s feminine stream and make their period curiously weighty or light. Body weight, exercise, and stress can all cause light periods, and realizing the reason can be useful in the longer run.

Is it unhealthy if the flow of periods changes frequently?

“Regular changes in the progression of periods might be a sign of hidden pathology. Hypothyroidism, fibroid uterus, and thickened ET may cause heavy periods. whereas in conditions like PCOS, pregnancy, the flow will be very low,” Dr Sahni further explains.

What is a normal period flow?

Menstrual flow may occur every 21 to 35 days. And the flow may last for 2 to 7 days.

Freida Pinto
A few changes can go a long way in managing a period flow. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Which hormone causes the change of menstrual flow?

Hormones such as prolactin or thyroid hormones can cause a woman to miss her periods.

When should a gynaecologist be consulted about a change in flow?

“If the period is changing very frequently, it is time to consult your gynaecologist. Just like every mind is different, similarly every body and every menstrual cycle is different. Even if your period falls out of the “official” typical range, it’s important to know what is “normal” for you. Speak to your healthcare provider, if you are concerned about your period volume,” Dr Sahni signs off. 

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