When Should You See Your OBGYN About A Heavy Period?
Heavy bleeding during your period is sometimes known medically as menorrhagia. Although every woman is different and menstrual cycles can vary, when should you see your OBGYN about a heavy period?
Why Should You See Your Gynecologist About A Heavy Period?
One third of women have heavy menstrual bleeding, but although it may be common, it isn’t necessarily normal. It can mean an underlying health issue which is not being treated. You could have a hormonal imbalance, you might be suffering from a drug side effect, or it could also be something more serious.
Besides cramping and fatigue, losing too much blood can cause iron deficiency anemia. It isn’t something you should ignore.
What Constitutes Heavy Bleeding?
There are some guidelines about what constitutes heavy bleeding. According to the CDC, menorrhagia or heavy bleeding last more than seven days. It can also simply be defined as bleeding which is very heavy.
So what exactly does heavy bleeding mean:
- If blood soaks through or you need to change your pad or tampon in less than two hours
- If you are passing clots as large as – or bigger than a quarter
- You need to wear multiple pads at a time to control your bleeding
- You need to change pads or tampons during the night
- If bleeding keeps you from doing your normal activities
- Constant pain in your lower stomach during bleeding
- If you lack energy, have shortness of breath, or become dizzy when you stand up
If you are experiencing any of these conditions, make an appointment with your gynecologist.
Causes For A Heavy Period
Heavy periods are quite common in young adolescent women first getting their menstrual cycle.
There are many causes for a heavy period from the benign to the serious. In order to recommend treatment, your OBGYN first needs to diagnose the cause. Try to make the appointment before your next cycle.
A heavy period can be due to polyps, uterine fibroids, hormone imbalances, an IUD, your meds, inherited bleeding disorders, or other medical conditions including cancer.
It could be something simple like changing to a different birth control method from an IUD, so don’t think the worst. The most important thing is to find out what is causing the heavy period and get appropriate treatment.