Even if you've had the pleasure of having your period for years, there are still things about it that are somewhat, well, mysterious. Why is it that some months you deal with debilitating pain, while other months you hardly notice it sneaking up on you? Some months you have to be on top of changing your pads and tampons so as to prevent leaks when other months you can be more lax? Chinese Medicine has some explanations. There are actual reasons your period is being weird, according to Chinese Medicine, which, if you know them, will make you feel far better about your usual frustration of never knowing how or why your period is the way that it is.
Chinese Medicine relies on guiding (and supporting) principles that might be a little bit different than what you're familiar with if you grew up with a more Westernized version of health and medicine. According to the National Institutes of Health's U.S. National Library of Medicine, the underlying principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine are Yin and Yang. When you're healthy, your Yin and Yang are balanced. Poor health is said to be due to an imbalance in the two. Ultimately, Chinese Medicine's explanations for your period wackiness often has to do with balance as well, but it's slightly more complicated than that. If you're looking for answers, according to Chinese Medicine, you'll need to look inside yourself at how your body is functioning. If your period is being weird, it's probably because your body is as well.
1. You Have Stagnant Blood
According to a blog post on NY Chi Acupuncture's website, intense cramping can be a sign of stagnant blood. You don't want this. To avoid it, do things that will help boost your blood flow instead of letting it fall stagnant and immobile, like exercise. The post also says that acupuncture and taking certain herbs can can help alleviate the pain associated with extreme period cramps. If you get these some months, but not every month, maybe you have some stagnant blood lying around. Some abdominal surgeries, abortions, some birth control pills, and IUDs might cause some blood stagnation, according to the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine's website.
2. You Have Liver Heat
Typically your menstrual cycle should be roughly 28 days long. If yours is shorter than that, it could be a sign of liver heat, according to Ping Ming Health. Experiencing symptoms like insomnia, increased heart rate, and feeling hot or emotional can also point to liver heat, particularly if your cycle is also too short. Taking it easy and avoiding stressful and emotional situations during this time can help with symptoms.
3. You Have Spleen Deficiency
Have you ever noticed that, some months, your PMS symptoms seem to just be out of control? Your boobs hurt, you're moody and exhausted, and you hurt all over. Why? According to the previously-mentioned post from Ping Ming Health, extreme PMS symptoms can be a sign of spleen deficiency. Again, taking good care of yourself and slowing things down can be helpful if this is the problem. The post also said that you might want to avoid eating and drinking cold things during your period to balance things out.
4. You Have Blood Deficiency
According to the aforementioned post from Ping Ming Health, if your period only lasts a day or two and is quite pale, you might be experiencing blood deficiency, especially if you're pale too. It could mean that you're iron-deficient. Eating foods rich in iron could help, but if you're trying to balance things and live according to the tenets of Traditional Chinese Medicine, opt for warming foods, drinks, and soup instead of cold.
5. You Have Stagnant Qi
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, qi is your energy, your life-force. When your qi gets stagnant in the body, it can cause you to experience some less-than-pleasant symptoms like bloating and back aches, according to a blog post on Wildwood Medicine's website. You can also end up with headaches, feelings of anger, and feeling overheated when you're trying to sleep as a result of the associated heat in the body. Not good. Once your period does arrive, these pesky symptoms should go away.
6. You Have Qi Deficiency
According to a post on doctor of natural medicine Dr. Josh Axe's website, a qi deficiency can interfere with hormone balance. Wacky hormone levels can mess with your regular period, and can be caused by too much stress. In the post, Axe recommended that you eat a healthy diet and make sure to get enough rest in order to help. Your period can be weird for lots of different reasons, but if you're looking for answers, you might find some in Chinese Medicine.
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