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Old 03-29-2012, 10:35 PM   #1
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period suddenly lighter than normal

I just started my period today and for the third month in a row, it's looking like it will again be much lighter and shorter than it usually is. The past two times, my period has only lasted a couple of days. I did have flow and not just spotting, but it was much less than what I'm used to. My period has still come on time each month, but it is different than what I normally experience.

Ordinarily, my period would last about 5 days and be heavy from about halfway through the 1st day through the 4th day and slowly tapering off on the 5th with maybe a bit of brown spotting on day 6. I'm used to using the super/overnight pads and having to change them several times a day on my heavy days. I also usually experience some gushing and clots on the heaviest day or two. These past few times, I've only had to use the regular pads and didn't really even need to change them. No gushing, either.

I am 35 and still a virgin -- yes, I know that makes me strange to some people -- so there's no chance of my being pregnant. However, I am concerned about being able to have biological children, given my age, the statistics and the fact that I've not yet met someone to have children with. I'm also concerned about perimenopause, but I would think that is unlikely at this point, considering my mother didn't go through menopause until her mid-50s and my 41-year-old sister has not begun experiencing any perimenopausal symptoms. I've read most women tend to start their periods and enter perimenopause/menopause around the same time their mothers did.

I've asked my primary care doctor and the gynecologist if I could have blood tests done to determine if there is some sort of hormonal problem going on and to see how much time is left on my biological clock, so to speak, but neither one seems to want to help me. The gynecologist said if I was really that concerned to go to the local fertility clinic and ask one of the docs there.

I also asked both my docs about the sudden change in my periods and neither one seemed to think it was an issue. Both said if my periods were suddenly heavier, lasting longer or stopped altogether that it would be more of a concern than them becoming shorter and lighter. Still, this change in my periods is not normal for me and it has me worried something is wrong or that I am starting menopause early. I've not gained or lost any weight or made any other big lifestyle changes the past few months, so I don't know what could be causing it other than some sort of hormone problem. The only other thing I can think of is that off and on since Thanksgiving, I've felt like I've been under a lot more stress and I don't know if that could be affecting my periods or not. I'm also worrying about my age and whether or not I will be able to have babies, so maybe that might be throwing my system out of whack?

Anyone have any ideas? Could I be fretting too much about this and possibly affecting my period length/heaviness from all the stress and worry? I don't know what to think and neither of my doctors seems too anxious to help me.

 
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Old 03-30-2012, 12:10 PM   #2
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Re: period suddenly lighter than normal

Do you have any other symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, pain, etc?

If you only are complaining to your docs that you have light periods, they are right in not assessing you further as that's really not an indication of anything serious.

If you do have any other symptoms, I think it's worth a trip to your primary care doc to get standard blood tests done to see if there's a reason for this. These tests would include hemoglobin, thyroid, vitamin D, calcium, etc. You may need to specifically request the vit D and calcium. Very common for women to be low in vit D, and that can cause all sorts of michief, but doc usually won't test for it unless you complain of something like fatigue.

Regarding your fertility, it's a fact that after age 35 your chances of getting pregnant and having a normal pregnancy significantly decrease. You could look into egg freezing if you're concerned about having biological children of your own in the future. The quality of your eggs really goes down after age 35, and even moreso after the age of 45, and your chances of having a baby with genetic defects like Down's Syndrome increase dramatically, so egg freezing can really help with that.

 
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