Influenza, or more commonly referred to as “the flu,” is caused by all kinds of related viruses (influenza viruses) wreaking havoc on the respiratory system.
Telling you have the flu is fairly easy because there are some symptoms including but not limited to:
- Nasal congestion
- Sore throat
- muscle pain
Did you know that there are also many cases where it may look like you have the flu but you really don’t? Some of the ones that can cause flu-like symptoms include the common cold, pneumonia, bronchitis, and even menopause and an anxiety disorder.
In women of childbearing age, a very common cause of the apparent battle against the flu is the menstrual cycle. It’s what’s referred to as “period flu,” and will be the subject of this article. So don’t stop reading now especially if you seem to have the flu during that time of the month!
Yes, many women get period flu during their period, although in some cases it appears a few days before those red days appear.
No, period flu isn’t a legitimate medical term or condition — it’s just a reference to the unfavorable symptoms that women of childbearing age experience or complain about when they’re having their period.
Do you suffer from the flu period on a monthly basis? Don’t worry because you are not alone. Unfortunately, there is no known cure for it. Again, it is not a respiratory infection caused by invading microorganisms, so there is nothing that can really be cured, except for some of the symptoms it causes. Furthermore, it is something that is not well understood in the medical community and is not always recognized by health professionals.
What causes it?
Earlier, it was reported that experts do not know much about the flu period. However, they strongly believe that fluctuations in the levels of hormones in a woman’s body during her period can be to blame.
Throughout the life of a woman like you, there are many instances where wild hormonal imbalances occur, and during that time of the month is one common and recurring example.
During your period, your hormones are out of whack—which is why health authorities strongly suspect they’re the culprit behind the menstrual flu that so many women complain about each month.
The influenza period is called that way because of two things:
- It occurs before or during a woman’s menstrual cycle
- It comes with the symptoms one experiences when fighting the flu
Needless to say, many of the symptoms you may experience when you have a bout of the menstrual flu are the same as those you are very likely to experience when dealing with the real thing. Aside from the usual (the ones mentioned earlier in this article), some women with the menstrual flu may also complain of:
- Whole body pain
Is it early pregnancy?
Since the menstrual flu can sometimes appear only a few days before your period starts, sometimes they can’t help but wonder if they’re pregnant and so they run to the nearest pharmacies to get their hands on pregnancy test kits at home.
It is true that some of the very early symptoms of pregnancy are similar to those associated with the flu. However, there is no clear link between the flu period and pregnancy, unless a woman’s period is late, experts say.
Since the flu period is not a medical condition caused by microbes, there is no treatment available for it.
The good news is that getting much needed relief from the many flu-like symptoms it causes is very possible with just a few lifestyle and diet changes such as:
- Take plenty of rest
- Get a good night’s sleep
- Reduce stress to a minimum
- Maintain proper hydration
- Eat healthy foods
Over-the-counter medications can also be taken for various specific symptoms. For example, you can put a pain reliever in your mouth in order to deal with headaches or muscle aches. Using a heating pad is an excellent home remedy for abdominal cramps.
The period flu can bother you before or during your period, and unfortunately, there’s nothing you can do to prevent it from getting infected—the flu vaccine won’t prevent it. Making some lifestyle and diet changes while it is there can help reduce many of the unfavorable symptoms that tend to appear.
Make sure to share this article on your various social media sites before you go to let your contacts know about period flu!