It’s that time of the month again: you got your period. While some women might find a visit from Aunt Flo to be one of sacred femininity, others might think “not so much” as their menses brings on intense side effects, like cramping, abdominal and breast pain, and mood swings. And then, of course, there are the times when you find your period has come at a most inconvenient time, like on your wedding day or during a much-anticipated beach vacation. No doubt you’ve probably considered stopping your period altogether. But is it really safe? And if so, what should you do to stop the flow?
There are two sides to the coin: there are those professionals who view a period as a natural way of life, as well as those who believe that if you don’t want it, you don’t have to have it.
“The great news is that if pregnancy is not your immediate goal, there is no reason you have to have a period,” says Andrea Martin, DNP, CRNP, WHNP, of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. “Thankfully, in this day and age, that is something we can control.”
However, Dr. Felice Gersh, M.D., author of PCOS SOS: A Gynecologist’s Lifeline To Naturally Restore Your Rhythms, Hormones and Happiness, sits on the other side of the fence and believes that a period should be experienced.
“It’s important to see the period and the menstrual cycle not as a ‘thing’ in itself, but rather as a reflection of the beautiful and essential hormonal rhythms of the female,” she says. “The menstrual cycle is a vital sign of health of a woman. A woman’s body functions optimally when the balance of the hormones is as nature intended it to be.”
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