Recognizing the signs your period is coming can give you a clue about where you are in your cycle, but they cause problems if they’re severe and indicate PMDD.
There are a variety of premenstrual symptoms and signs your period is coming. Each woman’s body is different, and the symptoms range from common to rare. The intensity of the symptoms varies, and some women might never have any symptoms at all.
The complex combination of hormones associated with the menstrual cycle are usually believed to be the cause of premenstrual symptoms, but vitamin and mineral deficiencies, high salt diets, and alcohol and caffeine consumption are also thought to contribute to premenstrual symptoms.
Menstruation is the process through which the uterine lining is shed, and it can last anywhere from 3 to 7 days in most women. Each month, the uterine wall is built up again in anticipation of pregnancy, and an egg is released from an ovary. If the egg is not fertilized as it travels through the womb, it passes out of the body.
This triggers the body to begin the shedding of the uterine lining, resulting in your period. The inception of menstruation in pubescent girls marks the beginning point of female fertility and the cessation of menstruation at menopause in older women marks the end of female fertility.
The only time that menstruation is supposed to stop for a healthy woman in her child-bearing years is during pregnancy. A missed period is one of the early signs of pregnancy, but it can also be a side-effect of stress, illness, and environment change.
Signs Your Period is Coming: Common Symptoms
Symptoms that you are in the premenstrual stage of your cycle are physical, mental, and emotional. Some of the more commonly experienced symptoms include:
- Bloating and fluid retention
- Abdominal cramps
- Tender, full, and sore breasts
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Nausea and vomiting
- Skin disorders like acne
- Memory loss or confusion
- Concentration difficulties
- Mood swings and irritability
- Feelings of sadness and hopelessness
Existing conditions can be exacerbated by premenstrual symptoms; allergies can get worse at that time, epilepsy seizures might increase in frequency, and women suffering from rheumatoid arthritis might have flare-ups.
Signs Your Period is Coming: Rare Symptoms
Experiencing severe premenstrual symptoms can be sign that you are suffering from premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). Premenstrual dysphoric disorder is a rare condition that affects less than 10% of women, and it does require medical support to alleviate the condition.
Signs Your Period is coming: Abnormal Symptoms
- Abnormal premenstrual symptoms include:
- Bleeding between periods
- Bleeding heavily or for over a week
- Severe pain
- Gap (3+ months) in your period
- Stopping of your period
- No menstruation in a pubescent female by the age of 16
If you experience these rare symptoms, you should contact your doctor right away. There are options to help control these very severe symptoms.