It’s not often that women talk about their menstrual cycle in a positive light. There is often a negative connotation about periods as well as the emotional and physical sensations that are often experienced throughout the cycle.
But when you understand the complicated dance of hormones that’s going on in your body, it’s actually quite amazing and gives you some really important information. I encourage all women to be empowered by understanding their cycle. They can use that information not only to know if they are fertile, but as a sign of health. Let’s take a step back and look at the amazing design of the female body!
What to Expect During Your Period
An average flow for a period will measure around 50ml or 3T over the course of 2-7 days. Anything under 25ml is considered a scanty flow, while over 80ml is considered an excessive flow. (You can estimate your flow knowing that regular pads/tampons hold about 5ml, while super pads/tampons may hold up to 10ml.)
Blood becomes darker when it is exposed to air, so a more rapid flow will produce a brighter red color. As the flow slows down towards the end of the period the flow may become more brownish-red in color.
Since your period is the shedding of the lining of your uterine wall, tissue from the lining of your uterus may be noticed along with the blood. You should see a mostly liquid flow, but a few small clots (up to the size of a dime) is nothing to be alarmed about.
Listening to Your Period
Good normal predictable periods are signs of health. When things are off with them, it is important to pay attention. Listening to what our bodies are telling us through our periods can give us valuable information.
For example, spotting prior to your bleed likely means that your progesterone isn't high enough. And while painful cramps aren’t uncommon, they aren’t normal either and can be a sign of excessive inflammation. These things aren’t necessarily a big deal, but should be noticed.
Our cycle is influenced by what was going on in our lives 3-4 months ago. Sometimes stressful events will give us a funky period. But if your cycle persists in being irregular, let’s talk about it. There are many things that can be done to encourage a healthy cycle and period.