Doctors in Fortis La Femme - Bangalore
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In preparation for the possibility of conception, a woman's body undergoes the menstrual cycle every month which culminates with the periods. This is a normal process which all women of reproductive age experience every month. However, in certain cases, the periods can be really painful where one may suffer from menstrual cramps or could be generally in much pain. This condition is known as Dysmenorrhea.
What exactly is Dysmenorrhea?
As mentioned above, dysmenorrhea is a disorder that many women go through while having their periods where they may suffer from painful cramps. The pain usually occurs in the pelvic area and the lower abdomen and may also be accompanied by other symptoms.
Some symptoms of Dysmenorrhea:
Some of the symptoms of dysmenorrhea could be any combination of the following factors:
I. Very painful menstrual cramps accompanied by lower back pain
III. Pain in the inner thighs, lower back and hips
IV. Being hypersensitive to light, loud sounds, specific smells and touch
V. Being fatigued all the time, even causing you to faint
Causes of Dysmenorrhea
Dysmenorrhea is usually caused by the contraction of the uterus. While the uterus does contract a little even in normal periods, during dysmenorrhea the contractions tend to be a little too much. Due to this the uterus presses against the blood vessels and organs within the vicinity causing oxygen loss to them. This causes elevated levels of pain and discomfort.
There are primary and secondary dysmenorrhoea. Primary dysmenorrhoea is menstrual cramps which are not related to any of the following pathologies. Some of the underlying causes of secondary dysmenorrhea are:
1. Endometriosis - This is where the uterine lining is found outside the uterus, especially in the pelvic cavity and thus may cause painful cramps.
2. Tumors - Tumors or fibroids which are unwanted growths on the inside of the uterus may also trigger dysmenorrhea.
What to do if you are suffering from Dysmenorrhea?
Some basic care which you can take to ease pain from dysmenorrhea are:
1. Avoid smoking and abstain from alcohol
2. Ample rest during periods
3. Keep the body well hydrated
4. Don't consume foods high in salt
5. Don't drink coffee or any caffeine rich foods
6. Lower back massages and hot water bag treatments to relieve pain
In very severe cases, pain killers which are safe to take, may be prescribed. Other hormonal treatment may be required if other pathologies have been diagnosed such as endometriosis etc.
The thyroid gland within the body plays an important role in regulating your metabolism among many other functions. This is a butterfly-shaped gland located in your neck and plays an important role within your body. However, a common condition that may afflict it is hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid gland. It is even more of a problem if you are pregnant as it may affect your baby’s development in the womb. It has also been noticed that pregnancy in itself may cause hypothyroidism.
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism-
Pregnant women may also exhibit symptoms common to other patients who are suffering from hypothyroidism. These may include:
Fatigue along with lethargy.
Mild to significant weight gain.
Feeling cold with severe chills
The thyroid gland produces the T4 hormone responsible for regulating many mechanisms within the body such as metabolism. With hypothyroidism, the production of this hormone decreases or stops altogether. This is important as disruption in the production of the hormone may disrupt the normal development of your baby.
Hypothyroidism during pregnancy can affect your child’s developmental abilities. Many studies in this field have shown that such children tend to have learning difficulties and may even display lower IQ scores during tests. It was noticed that sometimes, hypothyroidism during pregnancy wasn’t diagnosed correctly as the pregnant mother did not show much apparent symptoms. This is also a major issue in the early diagnosis of the problem. Hence, it is absolutely imperative to test for thyroid problems early during pregnancy.
Prevention is the Best Cure-
It is thus very important that mothers be screened properly for thyroid issues even before they are pregnant and while they are pregnant. Some of the medically recommended steps that should be taken are –
Screening before pregnancy as this can help to devise a solution for this condition.
Women with goiter or enlarged thyroid should most certainly be screened.
Women with a family history of hypothyroidism should be screened.
Treatments for Hypothyroidism During Pregnancy-
The doctors may suggest thyroid hormone replacement therapy wherein artificial T4 hormone is introduced into the body. This helps to maintain a constant rate of the thyroid hormone within the body. This can be done even before pregnancy as the developing fetus is completely dependent on the mother for its thyroid hormone until at least 12 weeks when the baby’s body can start producing it on its own. Also, the levels of this hormone should be regularly checked within the body through the TSH or the thyroid stimulating hormone tests to ensure that the levels are at a safe minimum.