Irregular periods Is a common occurrence in many women and the causes are many. It may happen due to changes in contraception method, hormone imbalance, hormonal changes around the time of the menopause and also endurance exercises. A woman’s menstrual cycle is usually 28 days, but this may vary from person to person. But if the length of the cycle is more than 35 days, or if the duration varies, then you may be experiencing irregular periods. This condition is common during puberty and menopause when the body undergoes many changes. Especially after puberty, it can take several years for the estrogen and progesterone to reach a balance, and irregular periods are common at this time. But sometimes, this becomes a general feature in some women’s lives. Also Read – Women with chronic pelvic pain may not find relief with commonly used medication
Irregular and long menstrual cycles in adolescence and adulthood are associated with a greater risk of early death (before age 70), warn researchers from the University of Harvard in the US. These associations were stronger for deaths related to cardiovascular disease and when long and irregular cycles were consistently present during adolescence and throughout adulthood. They were also slightly stronger among women who smoked, according to the study, published in the journal BMJ. Also Read – Beat PCOS with these easy lifestyle changes
Menstrual Cycle Is A Vital Sign Of Women’s Health
According To researchers, the results highlight the need to consider the menstrual cycle as a vital sign of general health in women throughout their reproductive lifespan. Irregular and long menstrual cycles are common among women of reproductive age and have been associated with a higher risk of major chronic diseases including ovarian cancer, coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and mental health problems. But the evidence linking irregular or long menstrual cycles with mortality is scant. Also Read – Obstructive sleep apnea linked ups spine fracture risk in women: Other health risks of this condition
Cancer, CVD Linked To Irregular Periods
So, a team of researchers set out to evaluate whether irregular or long menstrual cycles throughout the life course are associated with premature death (before age 70). Their findings are based on data from 79,505 premenopausal women (average age 38 years) with no history of cardiovascular disease, cancer, or diabetes who were taking part in the Nurses’ Health Study II. Women reported the usual length and regularity of their menstrual cycles at ages 14-17 years, 18-22 years, and 29-46 years. During 24 years of follow-up, 1,975 premature deaths were documented, including 894 from cancer and 172 from cardiovascular disease.
Longer, Irregular Cycles Linked To Mortality
The researchers found that women who reported always having irregular menstrual cycles experienced higher mortality rates than women who reported very regular cycles in the same age ranges. Mortality rates per 1,000 person-years for women reporting very regular cycles and women reporting always irregular cycles were 1.05 and 1.23 at ages 14-17 years, 1.00 and 1.37 at ages 18-22 years, and 1.00 and 1.68 at ages 29-46 years. These relations were strongest for deaths related to cardiovascular disease than for cancer or death from other causes. The higher mortality associated with long and irregular menstrual cycles was also slightly stronger among current smokers.