LET’S TALK PE­RI­ODS

Even as the idea of grant­ing leave on the first day of pe­ri­ods re­mains de­bat­able, we look at ba­sic facts of this nat­u­ral func­tion

Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur) - Hindustan Times (Jaipur) - City - - Time Out - Su­san Jose

Re­cently, there was a furore over a firm’s an­nounce­ment of grant­ing ‘first day of pe­riod’ leaves. While a few ap­plauded this step, oth­ers called it “re­gres­sive”. No mat­ter which side one is on, it seems like a good time to brush up on in­for­ma­tion about this phys­i­o­log­i­cal phe­nom­e­non.

EMO­TIONAL ROLLER­COASTER

Not every­one goes through pre­men­strual syn­drome (PMS) — the emo­tional, be­havioural and mood dis­tur­bances, mainly ir­ri­tabil­ity and anx­i­ety are caused due to the cycli­cal hor­monal changes. Ex­perts es­ti­mate that 20% to 40% of women in gen­eral are af­fected by PMS. When it gets se­vere, it is known as pre men­strual dys­pho­ric dis­or­der (PMDD).

THE PAIN PYRA­MID

Un­like PMS, the statistics for dys­men­or­rhoea (med­i­cal ter­mi­nol­ogy for pe­riod cramps) are not favourable. As per statistics, 90% of women are sus­cep­ti­ble to it, and to top this, the oc­cur­rence is ge­netic. Eat­ing too much su­gar, food items made of white flour (maida), pro­cessed food and smok­ing in­creases the sus­cep­ti­bil­ity too. Gy­nae­col­o­gists cat­e­gorise pe­riod pains into pri­mary (within nor­mal thresh­old) and sec­ondary (un­bear­able). Pri­mary pe­riod cramp: Some prostaglandins are re­leased dur­ing the men­strual cy­cle that causes con­trac­tion of uterus caus­ing the in­ner­most lin­ing of the uterus to shed off. At times, this prostaglandin causes harder con­trac­tion of the uterus and causes pain. Sec­ondary pe­riod cramp: Rea­sons for this can be ei­ther a fi­broid or en­dometrio­sis, or an in­fec­tion. In such cases of ex­treme pain, a visit to the doc­tor is a must. Pre-pe­riod pain: Apart from ex­pe­ri­enc­ing pain dur­ing one’s pe­ri­ods, it can also oc­cur one to two days be­fore men­stru­a­tion and last from two to four days. These cramps tend to be­gin after ovu­la­tion when an egg is re­leased from the ovaries and trav­els down the fal­lop­ian tube. Pain oc­curs in the lower ab­domen and lower back. How­ever, the good news is that many stud­ies state that Have plenty of flu­ids a week prior to pe­ri­ods, as this helps re­duce the con­sump­tion of junk food and ex­cess salt. Ex­er­cis­ing helps too. “Be phys­i­cally ac­tive as this re­duces the tox­ins near the pelvic re­gion and this will help re­duce pain or cramps,” says Dr Ban­dita Sinha, gy­nae­col­o­gist and in­fer­til­ity spe­cial­ist, World Of Women, Vashi. Coun­selling based on re­lax­ation ther­apy, warm wa­ter bag to the ab­domen ther­apy, yoga and healthy diet

HY­GIENE MATTERS

Hy­giene is of ut­most im­por­tance. Blood is one of the big­gest sources of in­fec­tions. There­fore, it is nec­es­sary to wash and dry one­self prop­erly be­fore chang­ing the san­i­tary nap­kin. Ir­re­spec­tive of the amount of blood flow in the nap­kin, it must be changed within a few hours as the uterus is open dur­ing this pe­riod. It is more sus­cep­ti­ble to in­fec­tion to the re­pro­duc­tive tract. It is highly rec­om­mended that san­i­tary nap­kins be changed ev­ery four hours in hy­gienic con­di­tions.

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