Periods aren’t the most pleasant surprise. They cause cramping, moodiness and bloating. But it can be reassuring to know that your period arrives just one time every month. For some women, though, missed periods are not unusual. In fact, there’s a name for consistently missed menstrual cycles — amenorrhea. There are a few things women should know about their first period after amenorrhea.
If you’ve had the misfortune of dealing with amenorrhea, you know that having your period for the first time after several months becomes a cause for celebration. But once you get that much-anticipated first period after amenorrhea, how do you brace yourself for your future irregular and unexpected menstrual cycles that wait ahead?
What to Expect from Your First Period After Amenorrhea
When you have amenorrhea, you know that having a period on time is just about as possible as catching a shooting star. But alas, Aunt Flo finally decided to pay a visit, and your wish finally came true. But now what can you expect?
They say that starting your menstrual cycle every 28 days is normal, but this rule of thumb doesn’t apply to women experiencing amenorrhea. Aunt Flo threw out that rule book long ago — she one-ups Baddiewinkle. While various factors cause amenorrhea to occur, most women have one frustrating symptom in common — not knowing when to anticipate their next period cycle.
While your first period after amenorrhea may seem like a blessing, don’t get too excited about normalized menstrual cycles just yet. The joy of the moment might lead you to believe you can sit back and relax. While you are on your way to a healthy reproductive system, it’s crucial to monitor your regained hormonal state.
As you watch for your second and third periods after amenorrhea, understand that you are still recovering. After undergoing this condition, your body has changed, so your period can have unfamiliar characteristics for a while.
If you’re following a specific diet, exercise regime or lifestyle change that you’ve introduced into your life with the hopes of finding period regulation, maintain these initiatives when your period finally does arrive, too. When another part of your body, say your heart, is damaged, you make the necessary tweaks in your routine until it can fully function. Waiting to adjust your lifestyle after amenorrhea takes just as much sensitivity and patience.
When the standard discomfort of periods returns, you can have a mix of thoughts. It’s no wonder you don’t want to welcome some aspects of menstruation back, but an underlying sense of gratitude toward your achiness and lower back pain isn’t unheard of.
Managing Stress and Embracing Rest
When you have a billion responsibilities to juggle, it’s normal to feel frazzled. Serious stress does a lot more than cause wrinkles, though. It can put your period on pause, especially with short-term amenorrhea. Although not everyone’s loss of period is due to stress, it’s a leading cause and can put further reproductive improvement on hold.
During your recuperation, you’re battling the wait and the symptoms, but don’t let added stress hurt your progress. Even overexertion can put a different kind of strain on you. Taking a break or reducing physical exercise is a positive form of bodily care.
Allow yourself downtime and continue to replenish what your body is missing. Pay attention to yourself and become familiar with your physical and mental limits.
In the same way that you should delay any lifestyle changes, provide yourself enough room to deal with stressors even after your amenorrhea dissipates. Practice calming activities and regulate your stress levels on an ongoing basis.
Getting Pregnant Can Be More Confusing
Your first period after amenorrhea can also be especially annoying for women trying to conceive. You might be excited when Mother Nature doesn’t bestow you with your monthly gift. And when your period finally does arrive three months later, disappointment doesn’t even begin to summarize the emotions you feel.
Unfortunately, having a period so late can be an unwanted sign. In fact, amenorrhea is one of the most common problems of the female reproductive system that signals an underlying fertility issue at play.
Expect to feel many different emotions. While it’s exciting to finally have your period arrive after waiting for several months, it can leave you feeling uncertain about how to tackle your future plans for pregnancy, too.
Overcoming Sexual and Emotional Difficulties
In a research study that examined the effects of amenorrhea on patients, women possessed higher rates of sexual problems, along with anxiety and depression, when compared to those with regular menstrual cycles.
If you have amenorrhea and find it difficult to feel comfortable or satisfied in the bedroom, you’re not alone. Many types of sexual dysfunction can interfere with your ability to find pleasure or arousal — and not having a period is undoubtedly one of them.
The connection between emotions and sex can lead to plenty of trouble, and it’s only heightened with reproductive issues. Anxiousness and stress can inhibit the body’s main sex hormone, GnRH, plus another important player, GnIH, shutting down usual sexual ability. Starting in the brain, the initiating elements of sexual activity can reflect the disruption in your menstrual cycle and confidence.
Though it sounds counter-intuitive, many women with irregular periods don’t feel free to get their sexy-time on — it can be hard to feel good when you’re worried about something like this. Many people enjoy knowing they can count on their period to reassure them that they’re not pregnant. Women with amenorrhea don’t have the luxury of counting their days for possible conception.
When an irregular state of mind interferes with your sex life, it can take a serious toll on your mental health, too.
Psychological factors can wear on you, and consulting a specialist to handle these effects can ease feelings of distress you may have.
Appreciation for Resilience
Maybe you know you’re incredible, but the doubt from amenorrhea put your personal self-perception in jeopardy. Your reproductive system is a highly remarkable and complex mechanism, though.
When your body sensed risk, it demonstrated the emergency through skipping periods. Reacting to this threat shows its biological imperative to protect itself. Getting your cycle back on track can end the deficiency in menstrual well-being.
While amenorrhea can feel like a roller coaster, it can also produce a new perspective on your body. From the strength of surviving physical impacts to the ability to bounce back, many women report finding new gratitude for themselves.
Schedule a Visit with a Doctor
Hate to admit it, but a regular period is a blessing in disguise. Typical menstrual cycles reassure you that your reproductive organs are functioning correctly and increase your chances of ovulating — and getting pregnant — with ease.
Sometimes, a missed period occurs because of stress. For others, the absence of a menstrual cycle can be chocked up to an unknown pregnancy. But when your period is consistently late, it’s crucial to know what’s happening in your body.
Look out for amenorrhea guideposts because those aren’t red herrings, at least. Common symptoms and side effects of amenorrhea — besides the obvious — to be on the lookout for include:
- Hair loss
- Pelvic pain
- Altered vision
- Headaches or migraines
Interestingly, the absence of menstrual periods can be the only symptom a woman with amenorrhea experiences. Everybody differs.
If you’re not too sure whether you have this condition, reach out to a gynecologist or licensed physician who can determine the cause of your symptoms, especially if you’ve experienced more than three missed periods.
Irregular Periods Don’t Have to Be Your Norm
We decry periods and vow that we’d be better off without them. But at the same time, there’s a sense of comfort in knowing you can count on your period to show up every month.
If you’re currently experiencing the thrill of getting that much-anticipated first period after amenorrhea, don’t forget to continue to take the initiatives necessary to help get your periods back on track. Work it out and eat right.
Remember to find a sense of balance in your life that helps keep you in optimal mental and physical shape. A woman’s health is important — which means paying even more attention to those pesky yet necessary periods, too. Aunt Flo might just surprise you in a good way.