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What is Hypomenorrhea: 12 Reasons You Have Light Periods.

What Is Hypomenorrhea?

When most of us complain about our periods, we complain about PMS, painful cramping, exhaustion, and 50 other synonyms of pain that come along with it. So, when we have a light period, that’s barely dripping and dropping, a.k.a. hypomenorrhea, it might seem like a blessing!But while less bleeding may very well be more comfortable and less hindering for you, unusual changes in your periods could be a sign of something gone awry in the land down under.

What Counts As An Unusually Light Period?

If your period is different from what’s considered typical for you, then it’s an unusual or abnormal period. Some light period symptoms are:
  • Bleeding less than you usually do or periods that more resemble spotting.
  • Fewer pads or tampon changes than usual.
  • Light bleeding at times when you’re not expecting your periods.
  • Spotting between periods.
  • You miss one or more regular flow periods.

12 Reasons Your Period Is Light

Whether you are experiencing a lesser flow, or your periods suddenly faded into nothing, there are a lot of factors that can contribute to a light period. Here are 12 light periods causes to look out for.

1. Early Signs of Menopause

Menopause is a natural biological process that marks the end of your menstrual cycle. It’s diagnosed as such after you’ve gone 12 months without a period in your 40s, 50s or 60s. However, you can experience a lot of changes in your periods in the years leading up to menopause, and light bleeding is one of the many changes.

2. A Sign of Pregnancy?

If you have been sexually active and your periods are acting weird, chances are you might be pregnant. Take a home pregnancy test or go to your doctor.

3. Don’t Expect Regular Periods If You’re Breastfeeding

Your body produces a hormone called prolactin when you’re breastfeeding; which suppresses ovulation and periods. Even if you get your back periods when you’re still breastfeeding, they may be irregular, shorter or lighter than they used to be.

4. Just Beginning Menstruation? Then It’s All Good.

It’s normal for teens just beginning menstruation to experience light and irregular periods. In fact, periods tend to become more regular and predictable in your 20s!

5. PCOS

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a problem with hormones that prevent your ovaries from doing what they’re supposed to do. Light, irregular, heavy, or absent periods are some period-related symptoms of PCOS.

6. Nutritional Anemia

A type of anemia caused by a deficiency in certain nutrients, such as iron, vitamin B12, and folic acid. A deficiency in in these nutrients can affect the production of red blood cells and lead to changes in your menstrual flow.

7. You Might Have Thyroid Disorders

When your thyroid produces too much or too little of the hormones that regulate metabolism – the process by which your body turns food into energy – your periods might become abnormal.

8. You Are Living with An Eating Disorder

Eating disorders impact your periods significantly by suppressing the secretion of hormones that stimulate ovulation and shedding of the uterine wall during your periods. This will result in light periods or absent periods over time.

9. You Exercise Endlessly!

If you are spending more energy exercising than you take in through your diet, your reproductive, cardiovascular, and bone health can suffer.

10. You Are Not Managing Your Stress

Unmanaged stress affects all aspects of mental and physical health. Does it come to you as a surprise when we say it affects your menstrual cycle too?

11. Hormonal Birth Control Is Also Period Control

Hormonal birth control measures such as pills, patches, or rings prevent ovulation and the thickening of the uterine lining, which can result in very light periods or absent periods.

12. You’ve Lost or Gained a Lot of Weight

Fluctuating body weight and body fat percentage can mess with your menstrual cycle, making your periods a lot lighter or shorter. When you gain weight and your body stores more fat, it throws your hormones out of balance.In a similar way, by losing weight through extreme dieting and restricting your body of necessary nutrients and calories, you put your body into stress mode and throw your hormones out of balance again.While having a light period isn’t necessarily a cause of alarm, it never hurts to know what’s causing the changes in your menstrual cycle. Track your cycle for two to three months, make note of all your symptoms, monitor your period’s length and heaviness, etc. to share with your doctor. This way, it’ll be easier for your doctor to analyze if there is a pattern to your bleeding and symptoms, for diagnosing your hypomenorrhea cause accurately.

Hypomenorrhea Diagnosis

  • Medical History: The diagnosis kicks off with a deep dive into your medical history, looking into things like your menstrual patterns and hormonal shifts.
  • Medical Tests: Next up, pelvic ultrasounds and blood tests come into play, helping identify potential culprits like hormonal imbalances or issues with your reproductive system.
  • Physical Checkup: Physical exams, including a check of your pelvic region, help spot any structural irregularities.
  • Hormonal Assays: Hormonal assays measure key levels, giving insights into what might be disrupting your menstrual flow.
By teaming up these diagnostic tools, you get a full picture, guiding personalised interventions and ruling out any larger health concerns. Getting a precise diagnosis is the key to crafting treatment strategies that fit you to a T, putting you and your healthcare squad in the driver's seat for informed decisions and an all-encompassing approach to managing hypomenorrhea for your overall well-being.

Treatment for Hypomenorrhea

Hypomenorrhea can stem from various light period causes, and it might be an isolated incident. However, if this pattern persists or if you encounter concerning hypomenorrhea symptoms, seeking further treatment is advisable. Your doctor will explore potential hypomenorrhea causes for the light periods and conduct tests to identify any underlying conditions, formulating an appropriate treatment plan.Lifestyle adjustments and medications can often address persistent and problematic light periods. Hormonal birth control may be recommended to promote regularity. In cases where light periods indicate a more significant issue, alternative medications or interventions may be considered as part of the treatment plan.There are some home remedies too for hypomenorrhea, but you should always consult your doctor instead of self-medication or treatment

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Prevention of Hypomenorrhea

  • Holistic Dietary Approach

It's all about embracing a holistic approach to women's health to prevent hypomenorrhea. A well-rounded diet packed with iron, vitamins, and nutrients, coupled with regular exercise, is your ticket to hormonal balance and lowering the risk of hypomenorrhea.
  • Stress & Weight Management

Managing stress through techniques like meditation, keeping a healthy body weight, and staying up to date with gynaecological check-ups also play a major role in prevention. Adopting this lifestyle sets the stage for optimal reproductive health, allowing women to take proactive steps and steer clear of hypomenorrhea.
  • Promote Menstrual Well-being

Ensuring top-notch menstrual health is doable with a balanced diet and a consistent routine. Toss in some dry fruits and nuts into your daily meals - they're like a treasure trove of fibre, minerals, vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids. And hey, speaking of iron, it's a big player in building the majority of your blood and keeping your overall well-being in check. Keep that balance, and you're golden!

When to see a doctor

Women experiencing hypomenorrhea should promptly consult with their healthcare provider if any concerns arise regarding their menstrual cycle. Seeking medical attention becomes especially crucial if hypomenorrhea is coupled with additional hypomenorrhea symptoms like persistent abdominal pain, fever, nausea or any other unusual discomfort. These signs may indicate underlying health issues that require evaluation and medical intervention.It's important to prioritise your reproductive health, and consulting a healthcare professional ensures a thorough assessment and appropriate guidance for managing hypomenorrhea effectively. Don't hesitate to reach out to your doctor to address any concerns and to rule out potential underlying causes of hypomenorrhea.

FAQs

Why is my period so light?

A light period can be caused by a variety of factors, including pregnancy, perimenopause, puberty, breastfeeding, PCOS, thyroid disorders, sudden weight loss or weight gain, eating disorders, excess exercise, unmanaged stress, etc.

When should I be concerned about spotting between periods?

Spotting between periods can be a normal occurrence for some women, especially during ovulation or when starting or stopping hormonal birth control. However, if spotting is frequent, heavy, or accompanied by other symptoms, such as pain or fever, it's important to consult with a doctor to rule out any underlying health conditions.

Can stress shorten your period?

Yes, stress can impact the menstrual cycle and cause changes in the length and duration of periods. Stress can disrupt the delicate balance of hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle, leading to changes in the timing, frequency, and flow of your periods.

What really causes a light menstrual period?

A light menstrual period can be caused by a variety of factors, including pregnancy, perimenopause, puberty, breastfeeding, PCOS, thyroid disorders, sudden weight loss or weight gain, eating disorders, excess exercise, unmanaged stress, etc.

Can PCOS cause light periods?

PCOS can cause a variety of menstrual irregularities, including light or infrequent periods. This is because PCOS causes hormonal imbalances that can disrupt ovulation and affect the thickness of the uterine lining, leading to changes in the timing, frequency, and flow of your periods.

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