What is menstrual cycle?
When menstruations and periods start coming regularly, it is known as menstrual cycle. If your menstrual cycle is regular then it means that the most important parts of your body are properly working. It gives chemicals to your body that are very important in order to keep yourself healthy and active and these body chemicals are called hormones. Menstrual cycle occurs each month and it prepares body of a woman for the pregnancy when you start sexual relationship with your partner.
A menstrual cycle can be calculated from the first day of you periods to first day of your periods that happens next time. On average, a complete menstrual cycle is of 28 days, it means that after 28 days, a woman get menstruation. But it is not necessary as it can range from 21 to 35 days. In young teens, it can also be 45 days long. Increase and decrease of hormones levels is responsible to control the menstrual cycle. What are my monthly cycles? You should know exactly about your monthly cycles but if you are not sure, you can use calculator tool that can check your cycle dates, ovulation and much more.
Phases of the menstrual cycle
Basically, there are four stages of menstrual cycle according to your hormones. These include follicular phase, ovulatory phase, menstrual phase and luteal phase. Each phase performs its own functionalities individually and results are also different.
It is the early phase of menstrual cycle that occurs in women’s cycle. In this phase, the follicle stimulating hormone or FSH level stats rising and as a result it causes your ovaries to produce fertilized egg. When 5 to 7 days of this phase completed, a dominant follicle will come that get more nourishment as compared to other follicles into your body. The level of estrogen also increases during this phase. Generally, your luteinizing hormone or LH is low but in this it period it rises and the levels of progesterone decreases. Duration of follicular phase is 10 to 11 days for 28 days menstrual cycle.
The Ovulatory Phase
The ovulatory phase starts in the middle of women’s menstrual cycle. During this phase, the levels of estrogen increases from day 10 to day 15 and after day 15, it starts decreasing again. You will find a little FSH surge for starting the ovulation with the large LH surge. The dominant follicle starts to collapse in this phase and as a result, your body starts producing more progesterone in order to create and manage the uterus lining.
The Secretory Phase
It is the stage of your menstrual cycle when lining of your uterine or endometrium starts development. This uterine lining will be safe house of your baby when you become pregnant and your baby will safe in it throughout your pregnancy. If you are trying to conceive and you do not become pregnant during your menstrual cycle, the lining of your uterus sloughed off in your periods. This phase remains for about 13 days or so. During this phase, the ovaries move through the luteal phase also. In this phase both FSH levels and LH levels return to their normal condition. Moreover, the estrogen levels also decrease from the peak but the levels of their baseline still increases.
The Menstrual Phase
If you are not pregnant yet then the corpus luteum starts to losing and the menstrual cycle begins. The corpus luteum is a spot located over your ovary from where the egg was developed. In case, you get pregnant, the corpus luteum will start producing hormones. When the corpus luteum breaks down, the levels of progesterone also decrease to high extent and your body starts to clean itself. Normally the duration of menstrual bleeding is four days but it can change from 2 to 8 days and so the average of menstrual cycle also change.
Menstrual cycle symptoms
One major sign of menstruation is bleeding from vagina. Other menstrual cycle symptoms include:
- Water retention;
- Mood swings;
- Pelvic pressure;
- Sore breasts;
- Food cravings.
Almost 85 percent of women gave report that they feel physical and emotional changes at the time when periods occur. If these symptoms become severe then there is also chance of premenstrual syndrome or PMS. Normally, it occurs after 1 or 2 weeks of the menstruation and appears by increasing or decreasing the levels of hormone before the start of periods. There are so many women who also feel positive sensation before menstruation such as euphoria, relief, invigoration, release, new beginning, creative energy, increased drive sex, connection with the nature and intense orgasms.
Irregular menstrual cycle
Today, one of the major problems that most women face is the irregular cycle of menstrual. It seemed that one woman from every five woman is suffering with this severe problem. If your menses occur after 35 days regularly then it is not called your irregular menstrual cycle.