“Third of women cannot function optimally during their period”

Furthermore, the survey of 42,000 Dutch women that appeared today in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, exactly what they suffer from. “When women have complaints, most people experience severe abdominal pain. Many women also report that they suffer from psychological complaints, fatigue and back pain,” says Nieboer.

Not at every birthday party

If women hide their extreme pain, this can cause irreparable damage. “A condition such as endometriosis can remain dormant for a while,” warns Nieboer.

An estimated 1 in 10 women has that condition. In women with endometriosis, mucous membrane, which is normally inside the womb, is also located outside. It can stick there in the abdominal cavity, for example, on the intestines or the ovaries. “This causes extra pain during menstruation,” explains gynecologist Joke Schutte of Isala Woman-Child Center. “It can even lead to infertility.”

Talking more about menstrual problems is important according to experts. “You don't have to throw all your menstrual troubles into the group at every birthday party,” says Schutte. “But if you really have a lot of problems, that is not normal and you can talk about it better.”

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