How to Manage Your Period As a Diabetic
As a diabetic, you know most things in life come with extra challenges, and menstruation is no different. Women with diabetes often experience heavier periods when they are in their teens or 20s. You may have longer periods overall, as well as heavier bleeding.However, it's not just your period that is affected. Your period can also affect your blood sugar levels, due to the rise in hormones. You need to carefully monitor your blood sugar levels during your cycle to help keep them under control.
Coping With Heavier Periods
Talk about hormonal contraceptives.It is believed that diabetes disrupts hormone balance. Hormonal contraceptives are helpful for many women. They can help balance your hormones, which in turn can decrease the severity of your period. Many women on hormonal contraceptives, like the birth control pill, find they have very light periods. Ask your doctor if this option is a good one for you.
- Most women who are diabetic and on oral contraceptives adjust just fine. However, it is possible that this treatment could raise your blood sugar levels, so keep an eye on that if you choose this method.
- Other options include hormonal intrauterine devices, as well as other types of oral hormones, such as progesterone.
Ask about iron supplements.If you experience heavy bleeding on your period as a diabetic, you may need to talk to your doctor about iron supplements. Your doctor can check your blood work to see if you have low iron (iron anemia). If you do, your doctor will likely recommend that you take iron supplements, as well as increase iron in your diet.
- However, it's important to check your blood work and talk to your doctor before starting supplements. High iron in the blood can actually be detrimental for diabetics, so you don't want to increase your iron intake without knowing whether it's low or not.
- Iron anemia is generally characterized by weakness and fatigue.
Discuss tranexamic acid with your doctor.Another solution that may help you is tranexamic acid. This medication can help you bleed less during menstruation, and you only need to take it when you're bleeding.However, like most medications, diabetics should be cautious about taking it, so talk to your doctor about whether this prescription is a good option for you.
Try NSAIDs like ibuprofen at home.If you do have heavier periods from diabetes, ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatory NSAIDs may help with the cramping pain. In addition, they may also help you bleed less. In some women, NSAIDs have the opposite effect (making you bleed more), so pay attention when you're taking them.
- Always talk to your doctor before starting any medication. Also, you should not take something like ibuprofen if you have an allergy to it.
- Be sure to discuss dosing of NSAIDs with your doctor as well. NSAIDS may cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in Type 2 diabetics. They may also increase blood pressure and affect the kidneys, which are both areas of concern for diabetics.
Using At-Home Solutions
Change your pad or tampon often.If you're having heavy periods, it's important to change your sanitary supplies fairly often, usually every 4 to 5 hours. You may need to do it more often if your period is particularly heavy.
- The exception to this rule is you don't need to change them overnight. However, you shouldn't have a tampon in more than 8 hours.
- You could also try a reusable option, such as a menstrual cup, to keep costs down.
Try a bit of exercise.While you may not feel like exercising on your period, it can actually help with the cramping and pain. It likely helps because it releases endorphins in your body, which make you feel better overall. Try keeping up your normal exercise routine if you can.Exercise is also helpful for managing diabetes.
- If you don't feel up to going to the gym, try a short walk around the block instead. Just do what you think you can do.
- You can even try taking the stairs to squeeze in a bit of exercise.
Use warmth when you have cramps.If your heavy periods are causing more severe cramps, warmth may help alleviate your symptoms a bit. You can use a heating pad on your back or abdomen or try a warm bath. The warmth can help your muscles relax, easing pain.
Get enough water.It's important to stay hydrated all the time, but it's especially important on your period. Be sure to drink plenty of water while you're on your period, as you're losing some liquid on your period. Plus, staying hydrated can help you fight symptoms like fatigue and tiredness.
- As a diabetic, you're more prone to getting dehydrated, as high blood sugar levels can increase dehydration. If you get dehydrated, your blood sugar can actually drop too low. Try to drink 8 to 10 glasses of water a day.
Dealing with Blood Sugar Changes
Check your blood sugar more often.In the week leading up to your period as well as the week of your period, your hormones can fluctuate. In turn, that can cause your blood sugar levels to change drastically. Therefore, it's important to check your blood sugar more often than you normally would during this time. That way, you can take steps to manage the fluctuations.
- Changes in hormones can make your body slightly more resistant to insulin, causing your blood sugar levels to rise.
- How often you should check depends on how often you normally check it. Ask your doctor what seems right for you, as it can vary from person to person.
Track your blood sugar levels.Try keeping a journal of your blood sugar readings. If you keep one throughout the month, you'll likely be able to see patterns around your period. That way, you'll have some idea of what's coming each month when your period comes around.
- You can also try an app that helps you track your blood sugar, including apps like Diabetes Tracker, Diabetic Connect, and Glooko. In fact, some new monitors connect to apps on your phone, making the process easier.
Adjust your carbohydrate intake.If you find your sugars fluctuate high near your period, you may need to eat fewer carbohydrates during this time period. However, it's always best to consult with your doctor or dietician before making an adjustment to your diet.
- For instance, you may need to eat fewer servings of carbs during the day, or you may need to cut back on the size of your servings. You can also swap out non-starchy vegetables for starchy vegetables. Just don't cut back too much, as that can drop your blood sugar levels too low.
- Try not to give into cravings. Some women find they are hungrier and have cravings for sugar around their periods. Try not to increase your intake of carbohydrates, particularly refined carbs. If you are extra hungry, trying adding a few more non-starchy vegetables to your diet.
Increase your insulin under doctor supervision.If you're on insulin, you may need to adjust it higher around your period. Of course, you should only do so under the guidance of your doctor, as adjusting too much could cause your blood sugar levels to drop.
- Continue to monitor your blood sugar levels closely, as your sugar could drop quickly when your hormones fluctuate.
QuestionI have diabetes and my periods stop for 3 or 4 months but it does. Is it dangerous, and what should I do?The MetalinatorCommunity AnswerIf you have Type 2 Diabetes then this could be normal. If you have Type 1 or you are young, then your periods could just be irregular. If you are sexually active, you could be pregnant. See a doctor/gynecologist just to be sure.Thanks!
Video: How can I deal with heavy periods?
How Long After Getting A Tattoo Can You Shower – Bathing With New Ink
Stress in America study released
Everything You Need to Know About Hallmark’s Countdown to Valentine’s Day
21Weight Loss Transformations That Prove the Struggle Was soWorth the Result
How to think and train like a Navy SEAL
How to Varathane a Table
Chocolate Cake Recipe
Charlie Sheen sacked
The sell-out wedges the Duchess of Cambridge wore this weekend are coming back in stock
How to Get Rid of Acne Redness
How to Measure Biceps
Alzheimer’s Disease: An Irreversible Brain Disorder
Sesso in macchina: le 6 posizioni, i trucchi e i consigli fare lamore in auto
Well Read: The 13 Best Wellness Books to Buy This January
How to Succeed in a Pageant