Your Cycle and Period Problems

Your Cycle and Period Problems

What is menstruation?

Menstruation is the monthly shedding of the lining of a woman’s uterus (more commonly known as the womb). The menstrual blood—which is partly blood and partly tissue from the inside of the uterus—flows from the uterus through the cervix and out of the body through the vagina.

What is a normal menstrual cycle?

A menstrual cycle begins on the first day of a period. The average cycle is 28 days long but it can range in length from 21 days to about 35 days. Most women bleed for 3 to 5 days, but a period lasting only 2 days to as many as 7 days is still considered normal.

At what age does menstruation typically begin?

Girls start menstruating at the average age of 12. However, girls can begin menstruating as early as 8 years of age or as late as 16 years of age. Women stop menstruating at menopause which occurs at about the age of 51 but there is a wide variation so for most it is between age 45 and age 55.

What are some of the symptoms of a normal period?

  • Moodiness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Food cravings
  • Cramps in the lower abdomen and back
  • Bloating
  • Tenderness in the breasts
  • Acne

You should consider seeing a doctor if:

  • You have not started menstruating by the age of 16
  • You have severe pain during your period
  • You have bleeding between periods
  • You have heavy bleeding
  • You have not had a period for three months
  • You have severe premenstrual stress/ tension

Periods have not started by age 16

Painful Periods

Bleeding Between Periods

Heavy Menstrual Bleeding

You Have Not Had a Period for Three Months

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

Polycystic ovary syndrome