Heavy menstrual bleeding affects more than 10 million women each year. Heavy periods are extra long or extremely heavy. You may have to change your tampon or pad every hour for several days, even at night.
This type of bleeding interferes with your day-to-day life and is not normal. It can also cause iron deficiency anemia because you lose so much blood.
If you experience heavy periods, contact the OB/GYN team at Women’s Care of Beverly Hills in Beverly Hills, California. We can provide treatments to help you manage the heavy flow and ensure the bleeding isn’t caused by an underlying condition that needs medical care.
It can be hard to know if your period is concerningly heavy. Here are some clues that you have menorrhagia, the medical term for heavy periods.
If you are tired, short of breath, or lack energy, you may be losing an unusual amount of blood during your periods and have anemia.
Heavy periods can be a result of something as simple as stress or as complex as cancer. We do a thorough evaluation to determine the root cause by looking for:
You may not even realize you are pregnant, but heavy bleeding can be a sign of miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy.
If we do a blood test and find that you’re anemic, we’ll prescribe iron supplements to improve your iron stores. Iron supplements don’t help alleviate bleeding, however.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can help ease bleeding intensity and help with symptoms like cramps and stomach pain.
You may benefit from starting hormonal birth control, like the pill, patch, or a hormonal IUD (intrauterine device), to lighten up your periods and reduce blood flow during your period.
Other hormonal therapy that helps balance your estrogen and progesterone levels can help ease heavy periods, especially for women in perimenopause.
We might also suggest gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonists to temporarily prevent ovulation and thus stop monthly bleeding.
Depending on the cause of your heavy periods, you might benefit from a:
We usually start with drug and hormone treatments and offer surgical interventions when conservative therapies don’t work, but of course, that depends on the cause of your problem.
The treatment we recommend depends on what’s causing your bleeding and its severity. We consider your age and your family goals, as well as your medical history. Ultimately, our goal is to give you the best care while honoring your needs and health goals.
Don’t just ignore heavy periods that interfere with your quality of life and could indicate a medical problem. Call Women’s Care of Beverly Hills in Beverly Hills, California at their Beverly Hills or Redondo Beach, California offices or use the online tool to book.