Females menstruate! There is nothing new about it. Sad part is that some people are disgusted by it. They should not be! This phenomenon is vital for creation of life among mammals. That’s the reason why we are writing this article on menstruation facts.
There is a lot of stigma and misconception related to this, specifically among men.
Women are accustomed because they go through it every month. The only problem is that even most of the women are partially ignorant about the whole phenomenon.
If you are one of those men and women who are ignorant about periods, this list of menstruation facts will help you get some knowledge.
Oh yes! We do have a segment on menstruation fun facts. So, it is not just science and science every where!
Let’s get started then…
What is Menstruation? (Facts 1-6)
As a norm here on Facts Legend, we are going to cover ‘what’, ‘how’ and ‘why’ in our list of menstruation facts. It is vital that you get a thorough knowledge on the topic but in an easy to grasp fashion.
So, here is our period facts for beginners…
1. Menstruation is the monthly discharge of blood and the lining of uterus (called endometrium).
2. Menstruation starts from the age of 12 to 15 years. The first menstrual cycle is called menarche. In some cases, girls start menstruating from the age of 8 or 9 years and it is considered normal.
3. Menstruation continues till the last menstrual cycle which is called menopause. Menopause takes place when women reach around 45 to 55 years of age. There are other reasons for improper timing (delay or preponement) or stopping of the periods.
4. Length of time from one cycle to another cycle of menstruation is 21 to 45 days in young women and 21 to 31 days in adults.
5. In a menstrual period, the bleeding happens for 2 to 7 days.
6. Menstruation is generally called period or monthly.
How Menstruation Takes Place? (Facts 7-25)
In the previous segment we covered the ‘What’. This segment of our menstruation facts article will cover the ‘How.’ Read on…
7. It is important to understand that menstruation is not a single phenomenon. It is coupled with multiple phenomena and what women experience is menstruation and menstruation cycle.
8. This is the reason why women undergo a lot of changes in their moods, emotions and behavior during their periods.
9. From Day 1 to 5, follicles of ovary start developing. Each ovary contains 40,000 follicles. Each follicle has an egg. Day 1 is also the first day of menstrual bleeding.
10. From Day 5 to 8, only one follicle develops, other follicles shrink back into the ovary. Estrogen levels starts increasing and the follicle keeps on growing. By Day 8, bleeding usually stops.
11. The lining of uterus thickens because of high estrogen levels in blood. This lining of the uterus is rich in nutrients and blood so that it can nourish the embryo if pregnancy happens.
12. Because of high estrogen levels, endorphins are released which are feel-good chemicals of brain. These endorphins are also released during physical activity. Because of these endorphins, women feel relaxed and calm during these days.
13. Just few days before Day 14, estrogen levels peak and luteinizing hormone (LH) also increases.
14. Because of the increasing levels of LH, mature follicle bursts and releases egg from the ovary. The process of bursting the follicle and releasing the egg is called ovulation.
15. Ovulation takes place on Day 14. If a woman engages in sex on Day 14 or three days earlier to Day 14, it is most likely that the woman would get pregnant.
16. Did you know that sperms can live for 3 to 5 days in woman’s reproductive organs and a woman’s eggs can live for around 12 to 24 hours.
17. Few days before Day 14, levels of estrogen are at its peak and hence women feel happy physically and emotionally.
18. From Day 15 to Day 24, the egg travels from ovary towards the uterus via fallopian tubes.
19. The follicle which is ruptured starts releasing progesterone. Just like estrogen, progesterone helps in thickening the lining of the uterus.
20. The woman would get pregnant if the sperm joins the egg in the fallopian tube. This process of joining of sperm and egg is called fertilization.
21. If the process of fertilization takes place, the fertilized egg will travel towards the uterus and implant itself into the walls of the uterus.
22. If the egg is not fertilized, then the egg breaks apart. On Day 24, estrogen and progesterone levels drop.
23. Few women feel irritable, depressed or angry during the premenstrual week i.e. from Day 15 to Day 24.
24. Finally, the unfertilized egg leaves the body with the lining of the uterus which marks the Day 1 of another menstruation period.
25. It is important to remember that on Day 1 the follicles start growing for the next periods or pregnancy.
This sums the whole menstrual cycle in short.
Why Periods Happen? (Facts 26 & 27)
Now that we have covered ‘What’ and ‘How,’ it is for us to understand ‘Why’ part in this menstruation facts list.
Menstruation happens because…
26. Periods are a body response of removing the lining of uterus and the unfertilized egg from body.
27. Regular periods tell you that your reproductive system is normal and healthy.
Random Menstruation Facts (Facts 28-37)
It is about time we get into random and weird facts about periods. Enough of technical knowledge so far. Let’s engage in some menstruation fun facts that are both surprising and educational at the same time.
28. Did you know that you need a certain percentage of fat (8% to 12%) in your body for menstruation to take place? It is because your fat cells affect the estrogen levels.
29. If you are in your teens and periods are irregular then don’t worry that much. We are saying this because your body takes time to adjust with a lot of changes and in this time irregular periods are common. Your periods start normalizing from the age of 18.
30. Many people think that sex during periods is awful but sex during periods can be orgasmic! The endorphins and oxytocin released during sex helps in relieving cramps and pain.
31. It is a common knowledge that people other than women really don’t have an idea of what really goes on during periods and how many sanitary napkins, tampons etc. are used during periods. But can you believe that NASA asked Sally Ride, an astronaut, about the number of tampons she would take in her space mission for one week of her periods. Can you guess the number of tampons NASA pitched for Sally? 100 tampons!
32. The smell of the sweat of the women who ovulate is more arousing to men than the smell of the sweat of women who don’t ovulate.
33. It is also proved that women’s voice is most unattractive when they are in their periods. That’s one of the most unexpected menstruation facts, isn’t it?
34. We know about PMS and ladies are pretty infamous for PMSing! But there is something called PMA i.e. Premenstrual Asthma. If you suffer from asthma, then before you get your periods, you may become extremely sensitive to allergens and your lung capacity decreases.
35. Did you know that Walt Disney joined hands with Kotex to create a pre-teen video related to periods? It is believed that it is the first video to use the word ‘vagina’. The name of the video is “The Story of Menstruation”. It was shot in 1946.
36. Scientists researched on the effect of artificial light on periods because light exposure controls the release of melatonin, a hormone which controls sleep, which in turn controls the release of certain hormones.
37. Scientists found that women who sleep by keeping their lights on saw their periods shorten.
Random Period Facts for Guys and Girls (Facts 38-47)
39. Many of us believe that women can’t get pregnant when they are in their periods. But it is not true. There is a good amount of possibility that women can get pregnant when they are in their periods. It is because of the fact that the sperm can stay in female reproductive system for 5 days! Something like early ovulation or shorter menses than average can lead to pregnancy!
40. Sometimes women can find blobs of blood, mucus, tissue etc. in their bleeding. They are present because the body is producing a lot of such blobs and the anticoagulants are failing to thin all the blobs.
41. It is extremely normal to see small blobs here and there but if you find large and painful blobs, it is time for you to go and check with a doctor.
42. Did you know that you lose around 60 ml of blood in each period (if it is normal period)? But why do women think they are losing much more than that? It is because the blood during periods is accompanied by vaginal tissue, uterine lining etc.
43. Periods in cold weather can be really disturbing because your body can’t get enough vitamin D to produce brain chemicals that make you happy. This adds to a laundry list of other issues like physical discomfort, cramps etc.
44. Did you know that there is something called vicarious menstruation? It is cyclical bleeding where your extrauterine organs like eyes, nose, teeth etc. bleed when you are in your periods. It is indeed gross!
45. In the middle ages, it was believed that red heads were conceived during menstruation.
46. Another shocking and gross menstruation fact for you! In the Middle Ages, people thought that menstrual blood could cure headaches, leprosy and even demonic possessions!
47. Here is one of the interesting menstruation statistics. Periods can also affect digestion. 73% of the women experience abdominal pain and diarrhea during their periods.
Menstruation Fun Facts (Facts 48-57)
48. Stress can do a lot of things. It can delay your periods, it can cause spotting, it can increase your bleeding, etc. So, it is important to relax yourself from time to time to keep stress at bay.
49. In olden days, girls used to start their periods when they were 16 or 17 years old. In modern days, girls start bleeding when they are 9 or 10 years old because of the nutrition and stress.
50. Here’s one more menstruation statistics: on an average, women use 12,000 to 15,000 tampons in her lifetime.
51. Every wondered how many periods does a woman have in a lifetime? We bet it is a little indigestible fact for women but women in western culture experience 450 periods in their lifetime and women in agrarian culture experience 150 periods in their lifetime. It is interesting to note that prehistoric women experienced only 50 periods in their lifetime.
52. Menstruation makes women horny!
53. But on the flip side, women who are menstruating look less attractive to men because of lower estrogen and progesterone levels in women’s body.
54. Female gender of humans, humpback whales and elephants are the only mammals to go through menopause.
55. Scientists still can’t decide whether women who stay together wind up synchronizing their periods.
56. There is a reason why men are scared of women who are PMSing. It is proved that female inmates are more likely to get violent before their periods start than after their periods.
57. Because of lower female hormones in women’s body, women mostly think like a man during their periods.
Menstruation Random Facts (Facts 58-67)
58. Though it is just 60 ml of blood loss for each period, most of the women face iron deficiency from their 20’s. So, it is advisable that women eat foods that contain high iron content.
59. Symptoms of menstruation leads to loss of 100 million work hours in USA every year!
60. The first company to show blood in an ad for sanitary napkins was ‘Always.’ The ad was shot in 2011. However, the ad was allowed only in print.
61. If you have back pain or vein pain during periods then it may be because of high estrogen levels during your periods (which is not normal) and if you have trouble sleeping then it may be because of lower levels of progesterone.
62. Sugar cravings can be caused due to low progesterone levels because, progesterone controls the blood sugar levels. If you experience heavy bleeding then one of the reasons for it is high estrogen levels. Getting a routine check up with a doctor is advisable.
63. According to a study conducted by University of Hertfordshire of UK, women who are in their periods spend impulsively and shell out more money than when they are in other phases of the menses.
64. A man got the patent for tampons in the year 1931.
65. Only 35% of American women are comfortable talking about their periods with their colleagues and classmates whereas nearly 50% of women from Philippines, Argentina and Spain are comfortable talking about menses with men.
66. Tampons can be great but if you don’t change tampon regularly, it may trigger TSS or Toxic Shock Syndrome which is really dangerous. Menstrual cups, on the other hand, can be used for four hours longer than tampons.
67. There are over 5000 euphemisms for the word ‘periods’ all over the world. That
Weird Menstruation Facts (Facts 68-78)
68. Over 50% of the women claimed that they ruined every pair of their underwear during their periods.
69. The periods you get when you are on the pill are actually not the real periods because when you are taking pills, you don’t ovulate at all. When you stop taking pills the progesterone level decreases and this leads to shedding of uterine lining and this is the bleeding that you experience.
70. Women are born with all the eggs that women will ever need in their lifetime.
71. US spends a little over 2 billion USD annually on menstrual products.
72. Because of the fact that blood flow is affected by zero gravity, NASA was worried that bleeding women may die in space.
If the menstruation facts so far did not surprise you, we are quite sure you will be surprised now!
73. Psychoanalysts like Freud considered that menstruation is a sign of loss of penis of women and a sign of inferiority.
74. Scientists suggest that prehistoric women ovulated on a full moon day and menstruated on a new moon day.
75. Scientists also talked about producing stem cells from menstrual blood.
76. Rhesus macaque’s menstruation cycle is close to human’s menses (29 days).
77. It is believed that early lunar calendars were based on the length of periods of women.
78. Egg is the largest cell of human body.
Okay, this completes our list of menstruation facts and menstruation fun facts. If you think we have missed out on anything vital, feel free to let us know through the comments section. We will love to know more! And albeit, we will add those menstruation facts to this list!