Any time your period shows up late for the party, it can make you feel like maybe you want to eat the whole cake (while you quietly freak out). One question you might not have asked is: how have I been sleeping lately?
That’s because your late-night activity can directly impact your menstrual cycle. From how you sleep to when you sleep, there are various ways your nighttime routine may be affecting your period.
We know night lights like light emitted from your phone and computer is bad for your sleep hygiene because it confuses your body, suppressing the production of Melatonin. This can impact your menstrual cycle as well. According to the Biological Research for Nursing, “There is evidence of a relationship between light exposure and melatonin secretion and irregular menstrual cycles, menstrual cycle symptoms, and disordered ovarian function.”
Restless nights can be a major drag, but did you know that sleeplessness can also throw off your cycle? When you have irregular or poor sleep—often caused by bad sleep hygiene habits—it can affect menstruation and ovulation because of the impact on your hormones.
Rotating Shift Work
People who work irregular hours like rotating shifts (nurses, flight attendants, etc.) are more likely to experience irregular periods. According to a review in Sleep Medicine, “Shifting your body clock affects your reproductive hormones, which influence ovulation and menstruation.” Researchers found those working rotating shifts were more likely than other employees to have irregular periods.
Healthy sleep habits are important all month long, but during your period, quality sleep is key and harder to come by (67 percent of women experience disturbed slumber while on their period). We’ve got some tips on how to get better sleep.
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