If you’ve ever felt like you poop differently during your period, you’re not alone! Already itna sab sehna padta hai periods pe, aao ek aur cheez add karte hai to the list!
So today, let’s talk about something that a lot of menstruators experience, but half of us don’t know it, and the other half refuse to acknowledge it! Now, what exactly is period poop? Get ready to blame your hormones, as period poop happens when your bowel movements are affected due to the release of hormones during menstruation.
We have created a thorough guide to help you uncomplicate the enigma that is period poop, which includes facts, symptoms, causes, solutions and busted myths!
6 Facts About Period Poop That You Should Know
1. Hormonal Fluctuations:
Period poops are caused due to hormonal changes, mainly an increase in prostaglandins that can affect the digestive system and lead to changes in bowel habits during menstruation.
2. Common Experience:
This isn’t a rare occurrence and many individuals who menstruate experience these period-related changes in their bowel movements. So it is a relatively common phenomenon.
Just like any other affliction, the symptoms vary from person to person. Like, while some might experience diarrhoea, others could have constipation, and some even a combination of both!
If you’re wondering when exactly it happens, these period-related GI symptoms mostly start along with the start of your menstruation and might last for a few days.
Although period poop can be uncomfortable, you can deal with it easily by altering your food habits, hydrating, reducing stress, and other ways.
Period poops are just another Discussing period poop openly can help normalize the experience, reduce stigma, and empower individuals to seek help if needed.
8 Symptoms Of Period Poop
The changes in bowel movements differ for every person, but here are the most common symptoms of period poop:
The most common affliction is diarrhoea during your period, which may cause loose and watery stools quite often. An increase in the hormone prostaglandins causes your digestive tract muscles to relax, which leads to frequent bowel movements.
On the other hand, many people have to deal with constipation. Your gastrointestinal system can get affected by hormonal fluctuations, which might slow down the movements of your stool through your intestine – thus difficulty pooping.
Bloating is another very common thing that happens during menstruation. You could feel gassy and bloated because of hormonal changes that lead to water retention, and the build-up of gas in your digestive tract.
4. Abdominal Cramps:
The absolute most common menstrual symptom – cramps. As we know, these are caused when your uterus contracts, but what we don’t know is that sometimes this reaches your lower abdomen and affects the gastrointestinal tract, which causes abdominal discomfort or cramping.
5. Changes in Stool Consistency:
Hormonal fluctuations can also affect the consistency of your stool. While some people will feel like their stool has become softer, others will struggle to poop while on their period.
6. Increased Gas:
Yes, you can also become a fart-machine on your period. The gas production in your intestine increases due to hormonal changes, resulting in abdominal discomfort and flatulence (farting).
7. Stool Color Changes:
Although this happens to very few people, some do report subtle changes in the colour of their stool during menstruation (yes, some people look). This can be due to many reasons, including a change in your diet, gut transit time, or random other influences.
8. Abdominal Discomfort:
If you feel fullness or heaviness in your abdominal area during your period, don’t worry. This discomfort is a common symptom associated with period poop and can range from mild to moderate.
6 Possible Causes Of Period Poop
Here are a few possible reasons why you might be dealing with period poop:
1. Hormonal Fluctuations:
Fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone hormones affect your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Basically, these hormones influence the speed at which your food moves through your intestines, which might lead to either diarrhoea or constipation.
2. Prostaglandin Release:
Prostaglandins are released during menstruation to help your uterus contract and shed its lining. But, if these hormone-like substances are produced at elevated levels, this might affect your GI tract, leading to cramps, diarrhoea, nausea or even vomiting.
3. Stress and Anxiety:
Your menstrual cycle is a stressful time, and many people experience increased anxiety. These emotions do somehow contribute to disturbing your GI with diarrhoea or an upset stomach.
4. Dietary Factors:
Obviously, what you eat plays a significant role in your bowel habits during your period. If you consume too much caffeine, dairy products, spicy, or other such foods, it could trigger gastrointestinal discomfort.
Occasionally, inflammation in the pelvic area due to conditions like pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or endometriosis can affect your intestines nearby, influencing your bowel habits.
7 Ways To Manage Period Poop
Although it might be challenging to deal with period poop, here are a few strategies you can use to manage your symptoms:
1. Stay Hydrated:
The best thing you can do is to hydrate well, and dehydration can worsen your GI issues. Water will help soften your stools and ease any constipation.
2. Fiber-Rich Diet:
Eat well, including tons of fibre in your food. Have fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, it will help regulate your bowel movements and prevent diarrhoea and constipation.
3. Avoid Trigger Foods:
Identify your trigger foods – items that cause discomfort during your period, like dairy or caffeine. Reduce your intake temporarily, or you could even avoid such items altogether to help calm your stomach.
4. Over-the-Counter Medications:
Casual medication like anti-diarrheal drugs, laxatives or fibre supplements will provide you relief for either diarrhoea or constipation. And as always, be careful while self-medicating.
5. Manage Stress:
Easy to say and hard to do, reduce your stress levels. Opt for yoga, meditation or deep breathing exercises as stress-reduction techniques, as this will help manage your GI symptoms.
6. Heat and Relaxation:
Use a heating pad on your abdomen to alleviate cramps and get relief from gastrointestinal discomfort.
7. Regular Exercise:
It might be a tough prospect, but honestly, regular physical activity will promote healthy digestion and relieve your constipation. Work out, but stay within your comfort zone and avoid strenuous exercises.
5 Myths About Period Poop!
1. It’s Uncommon:
You might think that it’s a rare thing that only happens to your but don’t worry, period poops are a common occurrence for most menstruators.
2. It’s All In Your Head:
Women are used to dealing with being challenged for every symptom, but don’t worry, this one is not in your head. It’s real, not just psychological, and hormonal fluctuations can genuinely affect your digestive system.
3. It’s Gross:
As always, there’s a stigma around discussing bodily functions and talking about period poop might seem like double trouble. It’s not gross, it’s real, it’s here, and we need to talk about it. Normalizing conversations about menstrual health is very important.
4. It’s Always Painful:
Although you might feel discomfort or cramps, it’s not usually painful for everyone. But, as we know, the severity of symptoms varies for each individual.
5. It’s A Sign Of Poor Hygiene:
Period poop has absolutely nothing to do with personal hygiene! It’s a totally natural response to hormonal changes in your body, and cleanliness is utterly unrelated.
Although Period poop is something that most menstruators face, the topic is all hush-hush because of the double trouble of talking about periods, and your bowel movements on top of that. This phenomenon is not uncommon, and the more we spread awareness about it, the more people can learn how to deal with it. Easy methods like hydration, a fibre-rich diet and lowering stress levels are all you need to do to better deal with your period poops.
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