Menstrual disorders refer to a group of conditions that affect a woman’s menstrual cycle, which is the regular pattern of hormonal changes that occur in the body to prepare for pregnancy. Menstrual disorders can include a range of symptoms, such as irregular periods, heavy bleeding, painful periods, and skipped periods.
There are many different types of menstrual disorders, each with their own unique causes, symptoms, and treatments. For example, conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and endometriosis can cause irregular periods, pain, and heavy bleeding, while uterine fibroids can cause heavy and prolonged bleeding. Other conditions such as thyroid disorders, anaemia, and certain medications can also affect the menstrual cycle.
Menstrual disorders can have a significant impact on a woman’s quality of life, affecting her physical and emotional well-being, as well as her social and work life.
Menstrual disorders are a common health issue among women in India, and many women face challenges in accessing adequate healthcare and education regarding menstrual health. Studies have shown that menstrual disorders such as dysmenorrhea (painful periods) and menorrhagia (heavy periods) are prevalent among Indian women, with some estimates suggesting that up to 90% of women experience menstrual pain at some point in their lives. In addition, there is a high prevalence of conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and endometriosis, which can cause irregular periods, pain, and heavy bleeding.
Challenges such as stigma, lack of access to menstrual hygiene products, and inadequate education about menstrual health can further compound the impact of menstrual disorders on women’s lives. Efforts are being made to raise awareness about menstrual health and improve access to care and support for women with menstrual disorders in India.
Types of Menstrual Disorders:
There are several types of menstrual disorders, each with their own unique causes, symptoms, and treatments. Here are some common types of menstrual disorders:
- Amenorrhea: Absence of menstruation. Primary amenorrhea refers to not having started menstruation by the age of 16, while secondary amenorrhea refers to the absence of periods for more than 3 months in women who previously had regular cycles.
- Dysmenorrhea: Painful periods, which can be caused by a variety of factors, including hormonal imbalances, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, and pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Menorrhagia: Heavy periods, which may be caused by hormonal imbalances, uterine fibroids, adenomyosis, or bleeding disorders.
- Metrorrhagia: Irregular bleeding between periods, which can be caused by hormonal imbalances, uterine fibroids, or cervical or endometrial cancer.
- Polymenorrhagia: Frequent periods, which can be caused by hormonal imbalances, stress, or certain medications.
- Oligomenorrhea: Infrequent periods, which may be caused by hormonal imbalances, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), or thyroid disorders.
- Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): A group of symptoms that occur in the days leading up to a woman’s period, including mood swings, bloating, and breast tenderness.
- Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD): A severe form of PMS that can cause significant mood disturbances and interfere with daily activities.
- Menstrual-related headaches: Migraines or tension headaches that occur in association with menstrual periods.
Menstrual disorders can be caused by a variety of factors, including hormonal imbalances, structural abnormalities in the reproductive organs, medical conditions, medications, and lifestyle factors. Here is a more detailed look at some of the common causes of menstrual disorders:
- Hormonal Imbalances: Hormonal imbalances can cause a range of menstrual disorders, including irregular periods, heavy bleeding, and painful periods. Hormonal imbalances can be caused by factors such as stress, obesity, thyroid disorders, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and certain medications.
- Structural Abnormalities: Abnormalities in the reproductive organs, such as uterine fibroids, polyps, or endometrial hyperplasia, can cause heavy bleeding, irregular periods, and pain.
- Medical Conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), and adenomyosis, can cause menstrual disorders.
- Medications: Some medications, such as blood thinners and antidepressants, can affect the menstrual cycle and cause irregular bleeding.
- Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle factors such as extreme weight loss or gain, excessive exercise, and stress can affect the menstrual cycle and cause menstrual disorders.
- Menopause: Menopause is a natural process that marks the end of a woman’s reproductive years. As women approach menopause, their periods may become irregular or stop altogether.
- Genetic Factors: In some cases, genetic factors may play a role in the development of menstrual disorders, such as in the case of genetic disorders like Turner syndrome.
Abnormal uterine bleeding: This can include heavy or prolonged bleeding during periods, bleeding between periods, or bleeding after menopause. In some cases, the bleeding may be so heavy that it leads to anaemia, which can cause fatigue and weakness.
- Irregular periods: Women with irregular periods may have periods that come too frequently (less than 21 days apart) or too infrequently (more than 35 days apart), or they may skip periods altogether. Irregular periods can be caused by a variety of factors, including hormonal imbalances, thyroid disorders, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
- Painful periods: Many women experience cramping or lower abdominal pain during their periods. In some cases, the pain may be severe enough to interfere with daily activities.
- Premenstrual syndrome (PMS): PMS is a group of symptoms that occur in the days or weeks leading up to a woman’s period. Symptoms can include mood swings, irritability, anxiety, bloating, breast tenderness, and headaches.
- Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD): PMDD is a severe form of PMS that affects a small percentage of women. Symptoms can include severe mood swings, depression, anxiety, and difficulty concentrating. PMDD can interfere with daily activities and may require treatment.
- Headaches or migraines associated with menstruation: Some women experience headaches or migraines that are triggered by hormonal changes during their menstrual cycle.
- Fatigue, weakness, or dizziness: Heavy bleeding or anaemia can cause symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, or dizziness.
- Nausea or vomiting: Some women experience nausea or vomiting during their periods, which can be caused by hormonal changes or other factors.
- Difficulty getting pregnant: Menstrual disorders can sometimes make it difficult for women to conceive, particularly if they have irregular periods or other hormonal imbalances.
Menstrual disorders can lead to a variety of complications, including:
- Anaemia: Heavy or prolonged bleeding during periods can lead to anaemia, which is a condition in which the body does not have enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to the tissues. Symptoms of anaemia can include fatigue, weakness, and shortness of breath.
- Infertility: Menstrual disorders can make it difficult for women to conceive, particularly if they have irregular periods or other hormonal imbalances. In some cases, fertility treatments may be necessary to help women conceive.
- Endometriosis: Endometriosis is a condition in which the tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus grows outside of it, which can cause pain and infertility. Women with menstrual disorders may be at a higher risk of developing endometriosis.
- Ovarian cysts: Menstrual disorders can also increase the risk of developing ovarian cysts, which are fluid-filled sacs that can form on the ovaries. In some cases, these cysts can cause pain and other symptoms.
- Thyroid disorders: Menstrual disorders can be caused by thyroid disorders, which can affect the production of hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle. Women with menstrual disorders may need to be evaluated for thyroid problems.
- Cancer: In rare cases, menstrual disorders can be a sign of cancer of the uterus or cervix. Women with menstrual disorders should be evaluated for these conditions if other treatments are not effective.
Role of Neurotherapy:
- Delayed Periods
- Heparin can affect the menstrual cycle by interfering with the production of certain hormones that are involved in regulating the menstrual cycle. For example, heparin can interfere with the production of oestrogen, which is a hormone that plays a key role in the menstrual cycle. Hence, heparin treatment is given to regulate the menses in natural way. Similarly, the pituitary gland produces and releases hormones that stimulate the ovaries to produce oestrogen and progesterone, which are key hormones involved in the menstrual cycle. Thus, treatment is provided according to that.
- When the body is under stress or experiencing a threat, adrenaline is released, which can cause the body to divert resources away from non-essential functions such as the reproductive system. This can disrupt the balance of hormones involved in the menstrual cycle, leading to delayed periods or other menstrual irregularities. So, adrenaline treatment is given to dissolve root cause.
- Heavy Bleeding
- Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with an increased risk of heavy menstrual bleeding, and correcting a deficiency may improve menstrual bleeding patterns. Thus, 1.25 DCC treatment is given.
- Hyperparathyroidism is a condition in which the parathyroid glands produce too much PTH, leading to high levels of calcium in the blood. This condition can affect the production of hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle, leading to heavy or irregular periods. So, parathyroid hormone secretion is inhibited to control the heavy bleeding.
- Painful Menses
- Heparin treatment is given in case of pain is due to clots.
- Medulla treatment is given in order to inhibit pain locators.
- Absence of Menses
- Ovaries are stimulated in order to enhance ovulation and menstruation.
- Other hormones contributing menstruation are also stimulated through neurotherapy.