Imagine you are having the best sleep; we all know 2am sleep fest be hitting hard. Then boom! A cramp wakes you up. You turn over, squeezing your knees to your chest to ease the pain and try to go back to sleep. Then you start to feel your back is starting to ache; you turn over once again, but then you feel the pending doom of that first drop of blood.
The panic gets you out of bed, so you don’t mess up your sheets and your favourite panties. Flash! It’s a race against time as you run to the bathroom; funny because if you are me, you can barely walk properly, so that first drop is messing your favourite panties, like countless times before. As if that isn’t bad enough, you are forced to sit in the toilet for an hour because now period diarrhea has you on chokehold. At this point you’re dealing with back pain, abdominal cramps, blood, poop, and the smell of the latter. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?
Period poop is normal…
Anything related to periods is normal – aches, moods, cramps, etc, and just because people don’t share much about it, doesn’t mean they are not experiencing it. According to Healthline, before your period begins, the cells that make up the inside layer of your uterus begin producing more prostaglandins (compounds in the body made of fats that have hormone-like effects).
These chemicals stimulate the smooth muscles in your uterus to help it contract and shed its lining each month. So, if your body produces more prostaglandins than it needs, they’ll enter your bloodstream and have a similar effect on other smooth muscles in your body, like in your bowels (your bowel/s is the last stop of your digestive process). The result is more poop.
Period diarrhea is caused by constipation
They say a person should be able to poop up to three times a day. I however have never been able to. It’s a good day if I even make it to the toilet once. Which is why I suffer a lot from diarrhea, because an article by News24 claims that the build-up of prostaglandins is the most likely cause of constipation right before, during or shortly after menstrual bleeding. Then when your body is preparing you to ‘create a baby’ it cleans out all the leftover poop that was built up.
What can help:
Drinking lots and lots of water
Increasing your fibre intake
If it’s more extreme than my case, go see a doctor so they can identify if it’s a dangerous issue for you.
So, if you have experienced this before but was too ashamed to talk about it, maybe this is the validation you needed? Poop away sis, it is completely normal.
Tell us: Have you ever suffered from period diarrhea?
If you found this blog useful, you may also want to read about premenstrual syndrome here.