Flag Your Flow

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Know when to flag your flow

Periods can be troublesome overall, so it may be hard to know when to raise a concern with your healthcare provider. Below are some common period problems for you to consider.1 If you're experiencing any of these problems on a regular basis, or if you're not sure whether what you're experiencing is a problem, talk to your healthcare provider about it.

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*On average, a woman loses about two to three tablespoons of blood during her period and changes a pad/ tampon every few hours.5

Pain commonly occurs with periods and is difficult to measure. Some women may feel heaviness in the abdomen, while other women may experience severe cramps.1

Irregular typically means less than 24 days or more than 38 days from the first day of your last period up to the start of your next period.1

§A negative life impact occurs if your period makes it hard to do daily activities, such as going to work or school.1

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Address heavy bleeding

When your flow is too heavy to be easily managed, it is called heavy menstrual bleeding. Heavy menstrual bleeding may be a red flag for a more serious condition.2

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Pinpoint your pain

The truth is, periods are often uncomfortable; most women report experiencing some pain during menstruation. While menstrual pain, also called dysmenorrhea, in some form is common, severe menstrual pain should be evaluated.7,8

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1. Period problems. Office on Women's Health. Accessed September 2022. https://www.womenshealth.gov/menstrual-cycle/period-problems. 2. Heavy menstrual bleeding. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Accessed August 2022. https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/heavymenstrual-bleeding. 3. Hapangama DK, Bulmer JN. Pathophysiology of heavy menstrual bleeding. Womens Health (Lond). 2016;12(1):3-13. doi:10.2217/ whe.15.81. 4. Your first period. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Accessed October 2022. https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/your-first-period. 5. Your menstrual cycle. Office on Women's Health. Accessed September 2022. https://www.womenshealth.gov/menstrualcycle/your-menstrual-cycle. 6. Menstrual definition. Merriam-Webster. Accessed August 2022. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/menstrual. 7. Dysmenorrhea definition. Taber's Online. Accessed January 2023. https://www.tabers.com/tabersonline/view/Tabers-Dictionary/742562/all/dysmenorrhea. 8. Painful periods. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Accessed October 2022. https://www.acog.org/womenshealth/faqs/painful-periods.