Heavy Menstrual Bleeding- Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Heavy Menstrual Bleeding (Menorrhagia)

heavy menstrual bleeding

What is Heavy Menstrual Bleeding? 

Menorrhagia is the medical terminology for exceptionally heavy or protracted menstrual flow. Although heavy menstrual bleeding is a common worry, most women do not lose enough blood to be classified as Menorrhagia.

When you have Menorrhagia, you can’t do your normal activities during your period because you’re losing so much blood and cramping.

Consult your doctor if you dread your period because of severe menstrual flow.

Menorrhagia can be treated in a variety of ways.

Bleeding that does not follow a regular pattern, such as spotting between periods, is sometimes referred to as this generic phrase.

Menorrhagia was once the term for it, but it is no longer used medically.

During her monthly period, which lasts four to seven days, a typical woman passes roughly 40 ml of blood. However, bleeding may be extremely heavy for some women or last longer than usual.

If the bleeding continues for more than seven days with lots of cramping and you feel constipated, it’s a matter of concern.

Heavy Menstrual Bleeding Symptoms

Heavy menstrual bleeding can be observed and treated at the right time only if a female is aware of the symptoms of heavy menstrual bleeding.

So do you know what the symptoms and signs are? If yes, keep checking and be healthy, and if not, keep reading to learn.

Read More: What your Period Color says about Your Health

Following are the symptoms of heavy menstrual bleeding, which have been mentioned below:-

  • Flow that necessitates a nighttime sanitary napkin change
  • More than eight days of bleeding
  • Excessive blood loss during the menstrual period, such as soaking through one or more sanitary pads or tampons every hour for several hours.
  • Because of your heavy bleeding, you’ll have to adjust or restrict your daily activities.
  • Spotting or bleeding in between periods (intermenstrual bleeding)
  • A lot of cramping and pain in your lower abdomen
  • After menopause, you may experience weariness or restlessness and vaginal bleeding.
  • Excessive release of clotting
  • Feeling of nausea or observing pre-menstrual symptoms more than earlier.

What Causes Heavy Menstrual Bleeding?

Heavy menstrual bleeding can be caused by various factors, including hormone imbalances, medical disorders, and even stress. Possible causes of heavy menstrual bleeding are listed below:-

1. Harmonal Imbalance

Your body’s hormones, such as estrogen and progesterone, aid in regulating your menstrual cycle, including how heavy your periods are.

Heavy menstrual bleeding might be caused by a disorder that causes your hormones to become unbalanced.

Weight gain greater than your optimal body weight can disrupt hormone synthesis and cause heavy menstrual bleeding.

One of the most common examples of hormonal imbalance disease is PCOD [polycystic ovary disease], and the other one is thyroid disease. These two hormonal disorders can lead to adverse consequences and play a vital role in heavy menstrual bleeding.

2. Uterine growths that aren’t malignant

Growth of polyps & fibroids are sometimes responsible for heavy menstrual bleeding. Heavy menstrual bleeding can also be caused by benign uterine growths and disorders that cause cells in your uterus to grow inappropriately.

3. Malignant reasons behind heavy menstrual bleeding

Certain adverse health conditions like uterine cancer or cervical cancer are also one reason behind heavy menstrual bleeding. It can be caused by conditions that raise your risk of cancer, such as endometrial hyperplasia and reproductive system malignancies.

4. Sexually transmitted diseases

Although STDs like gonorrhea and chlamydia are more likely to cause spotting or bleeding between periods, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) can induce heavy periods and chronic pelvic pain. Heavy bleeding can be caused by sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or chronic endometritis.

5. Miscarriage

After fertilization, a miscarriage can occur at any time. It would be simple to mistake it for menstruation if you didn’t know you were pregnant.

Spotting heavy bleeding can be caused by both a period and a miscarriage. It’s less probable that you’ll confuse a miscarriage for a period beyond the first eight weeks or so.

Your first period after a miscarriage will almost certainly be thicker than usual, regardless of when it occurs. Because you haven’t ovulated in the previous cycle, your endometrial lining (uterine wall lining) may be thicker.

Spotting is expected when you’re pregnant; however, Your bleeding may be excessive if you bleed through a pad in less than 2 hours.

If you bleed through a big pad in less than an hour, you should seek medical attention immediately. Other symptoms that could suggest blood loss may be mentioned. It’s critical to get medical treatment as soon as these symptoms appear.

Read More: How to Increase Progesteron

Heavy Menstrual Bleeding with Blood Clots

Your period is getting heavier, and you’re passing irregular period clots for various reasons. The good news is that many diseases and causes for these symptoms are common and treatable. Reasons for the clots during periods are:-

  • The thyroid gland, located in the neck, is in charge of hormone production and distribution. It can cause havoc on your cycle if it isn’t working properly.

Hypothyroidism (the production of too little or too much thyroid hormone) and hyperthyroidism (too much thyroid hormone) can affect the flow and severity of your menstrual cycle.

  • Your method of birth control could be a contributing cause if you recently started a new form of birth control and are passing large blood clots during periods.

Non-hormonal IUDs, for example, might cause heavier-than-normal periods and blood clots in some women.

  • Many over-the-counter and prescription drugs, such as birth control, can contribute to heavy periods with clots. Anti-inflammatory drugs, hormonal drugs (estrogen and progestins), and anticoagulants can all cause irregular menstrual flow and bleeding.
  • A miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy (when a fetus begins to form outside of the uterus) during the early stages of pregnancy is sometimes mistaken for a heavier-than-usual period clot. An early pregnancy loss might sometimes result in larger-than-usual blood clots.
  • Endometriosis is a condition in which tissues that ordinarily grow inside the uterus expand outside the uterine cavity. This might result in significant clotting and bleeding, abdominal pain, and severe cramps during your cycle.

It can be excruciatingly painful and difficult to diagnose, but various treatments can help you manage this chronic illness.

How to Stop Heavy Menstrual Bleeding with Clots?

Here are the list of things which you can do to stop heavy menstrual bleeding :-

  • Seek medical help if pain is unbearable 
  • Consume iron rich food
  • Consume fennel seeds for fewer cramps
  • Drink hot water and Jaggery 
  • Oral contraceptives are also recommended [only go with this option when prescribed by medical professionals]
  • Hormonal tablets advised by gynecologists. 

When to See a Doctor

  • As discussed earlier, the thyroid hormone can also cause heavy menstrual bleeding because an increase or decrease in thyroid hormone level disturbs the healthy menstrual cycle.

Always visit a doctor if you notice any thyroid symptoms like sudden weight loss or gain, hair fall, etc. Your doctor should run a thyroid panel, also known as a TSH panel, to examine your thyroid health to identify a thyroid issue correctly.

  • It could be a uterine obstruction like a fibroid if you have excessive bleeding, huge blood clots during your period, or lower back pain.
  • If you have an IUD and have significant clotting and bleeding, talk to your doctor about your symptoms to find out if this is the best type of birth control.
  • If you’re passing substantial blood clots during periods, try to inventory your medications and ask your healthcare provider about any potential adverse effects.
  • If you’re feeling restlessness or excessive weakness, talk to your doctor. 
  • Facing cramping and straining throughout the day and night, it’s a matter of concern and time to visit a doctor.

Conclusion

One of the most common concerns women report to their doctors is heavy menstrual bleeding (Menorrhagia). Not all reasons for high period bleeding may be avoided.

However, communicating with your doctor to get identified and treated can help you manage your bleeding, so it doesn’t affect your quality of life.

Heavy periods, if left untreated, can cause significant disruptions in your life. Furthermore, heavy menstrual bleeding can lead to anemia, leaving you weary and weak.

If you don’t seek care, you may develop other health issues. You may manage heavy periods without jeopardizing your health with your specialist’s right therapy and support.

Frequently Asked Question

1. Can heavy menstrual bleeding cause low platelets?

If you’re about to start your period, pregnant, or taking birth control pills, your platelet count may drop. Your platelet count can also be affected by some medications.
 
Platelets cluster together and form plugs in blood vessels to stop bleeding.
 
A bone marrow issue, such as leukemia or an immune system problem, can cause thrombocytopenia. Due to severe monthly bleeding, there is a risk of platelet decrease.

2. What home remedy can I use to stop heavy periods?

Intake of pomegranate flower
Ginger- Jaggery with lukewarm 

3. What foods make your period heavier?

Dairy products
Food rich in vitamin C
Caffeine
Heavy exercise
Pineapple
Papaya
Chocolate

3. Can stress cause heavy periods?

Menstrual cycle variations can result from mental stress and range from skipped or irregular periods to excessive menstrual flow.
Researchers have discovered a link between menstruation and stress. If you’re more stressed than usual, you can notice a heavier, lighter, or irregular flow or even no menstruation.
 
Stress hormones are released in the body in response to stress (physical or emotional), resulting in hormonal imbalance, which can lead to more severe bleeding and clots.

4. Can an iron deficiency cause heavy periods?

No, low iron can lead to lighter flow. A female with iron deficiency can suffer cramps and pain clots, but there is a very less chance of heavy bleeding because of low iron content.

5. Can vitamins cause heavy menstrual bleeding?

Many drugs, herbs, vitamins, and dietary supplements might make menstruation more painful. Vitamin C can affect vital hormones during periods, and vitamin C can enhance estrogen levels while decreasing progesterone levels.
 
These hormonal shifts can cause uterine contractions and the uterine lining to break down, resulting in menstruation.
 
A rumor exists that Vitamin B supplements increase menstrual bleeding, but there’s no evidence till date.

6. Can heavy menstrual bleeding cause dehydration?

You may become dehydrated as a result of blood loss. If you have significant bleeding, you may need to drink an additional 4 to 6 glass of water each day.
 
A daily electrolyte solution can also assist with dehydration symptoms. Iron-rich foods can help you avoid iron deficiency anemia by lowering your risk.
 
Hormones can alter your hydration levels, and fluctuations in hormone levels around your period can make you more prone to dehydration. You may feel dizzy as a result of this.

7. Can exercise cause heavy menstrual bleeding?

Intense activity can alter the hormones that regulate your menstrual cycle. It can cause you to have breakthrough bleeding when you aren’t on your period, have lighter periods than usual, or have no period.
 
A person’s flow can increase as a result of exercise, and this occurs because physical activity can help blood exit the uterus more quickly. A person must wear a tampon, pad, or menstrual cup suited for a more significant flow to prepare for their period.

8. Is heavy menstrual bleeding a sign of menopause?

 
Yes, heavy menstrual bleeding is a sign of menopause. If a woman is suffering from heavy menstrual bleeding in her early 40s, it’s not a matter of concern if only heavy bleeding is observed without pain.

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