Stress! It is such an integral, non avoidable part of our lives that we just cannot banish it. No matter how much we try to get away from it, it follows us like an obsessive stalker creating havoc in our lives and disturbing us emotionally, socially and physically. The effects of stress have been known to disrupt various processes in the body.
It affects the digestive system by causing hyperacidity, diarrhoea and vomiting, the excretory system and one experiences incontinence or frequent urination, pulmonary system leading to breathlessness and also the reproductive system. In women, the reproductive system is hindered and sometimes it is seen through various problems in your menstruation cycle. Most of the times you will find delayed or missed period.
The Menstrual Cycle
A normal menstrual cycle follows a 28-30 day pattern in most of the women. However, it is unique and sometimes can also be a 30-35 day cycle. The menstruation cycle ends when the walls of the uterus tear and bleeding takes place. The body then again prepares the uterus for conception by building the lining of the uterus. After ovulation if the ova is not fertilized this lining is shed by the uterus to cause bleeding. Hence, menstruation is a classic indicator of healthy functioning of the reproductive system in the body.
Relationship Between Stress and Menstruation
When we are under tremendous stress and are worrying excessively, our body sends signals to the master gland of the body which is the pituitary gland to secrete anxiety/stress hormones called Adrenaline and Cortisol. These hormones when secreted hinder the other processes in the body and give signals to the brain to stop other non important functions of the body, reproductive being one of them.
Due to this the female hormones called oestrogen and progesterone are not secreted in our body and the ovaries fail to perform its function thus leading to no ovulation. If there is no ovulation, there are no chances of the regular menstrual cycle. Cortisol tends to quicken the brain activity and adrenaline gives you a lot of energy that leads to hyper activeness. This is the reason that during high stress days we find ourselves pacing around and unable to rest.
Stress may not always curb the menstrual cycle. In every woman, owing to her unique menstrual cycle, there could be varied forms of disruption and irregularity. She could experience delayed or missed periods and this state is called amenorrhea. One can also experience excessive bleeding or minimal bleeding and an abnormally short menstruation cycle. There could be clots and immense cramps and pain which will make the cycle uncomfortable and abnormal.
Combating Stress and its Importance
Such is our lifestyle that it is practically impossible to eliminate stress from it. However, coping with it becomes essential to do justice to our health. Channelizing the energy in the right direction becomes important. You can choose your own way of combating stress. Practicing meditation is one of the best ways to get some control over stress.
Meditation conditions the mind and helps you relax and will curb the hyperactivity of the brain. Dancing or listening to music can also help you feel better. Sleeping well and eating right are some other ways of keeping stress levels in check. As mentioned above, stress hinders in the normal functioning of the body and hence to allow the body to work at optimum levels dealing with stress becomes very important.