How COVID-19 Can Affect Your Menstrual Period

 

The global pandemic is affecting people in different ways all over the world. It’s affecting how we greet people, how we work and how we even educate our children. The coronavirus COVID-19 has exposed some of the many health disparities affecting the African American community. While it’s making us much more attentive to health issues like heart disease, diabetes and cancer, it’s also affecting women in a unique way: menstrual periods.

The stress from this pandemic can and has impacted both our mental and physical health, including our periods. Some folks with underlying anxiety or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) are feeling triggered right now. Likewise, stress may influence cycle length, vaginal bleeding patterns, painful periods, and premenstrual symptoms.

“If you get COVID-19, it’s a stress on the body and a major stress on the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis, which is the body’s central stress response system,” says Dr. Tara Shirazian. She’s the director of Global Women’s Health and an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at NYU Langone Health in New York City.