Period Colds

It’s a natural phenomenon you’ve likely experienced firsthand: period colds. You’re not quite sick, but you’re not not sick either. You think, “Am I getting sick?” Then a few days later your period arrives and everything makes sense again. Still, you’re left wondering — can our menstrual cycles can really shoot down our immune systems?

Short answer: yes.

Period colds are fact, not fiction. Trust me when I say that this was upsetting to discover. I really want to love my female body, but when she does me like this she’s really testing me. 

Many of us know that “that time of month” gets us feeling more tired than usual. Except it’s not just feeling tired. It’s fatigue. Fatigue is over-tiredness — that’s it’s literal definition. Bringing on an overall weariness, fatigue is a lot more intense and a lot more inhibiting than average feelings of tiredness. Nausea, vomiting, and dizziness are all also common during PMS. Why is that?

During the week leading up to periods — sometimes even two weeks prior — our bodies produce more prostaglandins during our cycles. While these hormones help regulate uterine contractions, they also cause inflammation and often get mixed up in our blood stream. Thus, our organs and muscles start flaring up. Hence all that ibuprofen you take. Hence that sick feeling. And if you were already feeling an oncoming cold anyway, good luck. 

Battling a period cold is no different than warding off a regular cold, it’s just slightly more bloody. Maybe that makes it worse. Regardless, a weakened immune system is never a fun time.

Have you ever experienced a period cold?

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Written by Nina Slowinski

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