Excessive menstrual bleeding is known as Menorrhagia. This condition can be quite detrimental in many ways since the excessive loss of blood can lead to severe anemia, which can then lead to cardiac arrest. Therefore, It is extremely important to get this condition under control quickly. Most doctors treat this condition with the use of birth control pills, however, these pills have far too many risks associated with them.
The condition typically appears with the following features:
- Excessive bleeding during the menstrual period
- Bleeding for a prolonged time
- Spotting between menstrual cycles
- Uterine pain
- Back pain
The symptoms of this condition vary from person to person. However, Ayurvedic medical scholars have clearly identified the various ways in which Menorrhagia presents and have grouped them accordingly, in order to administer the proper treatment.
- Hormonal Imbalances (Common during pubescent years, pre-menopause years, in estrogen dominance, and due to stress)
- Fibroids (Less common)
- Clotting disorders, etc.
Abnormal uterine bleeding is categorized into various sub-types according to Ayurvedic medicine. Based on whichever type you have, specific management and dietary habits should be followed. For a proper evaluation of your condition, schedule a consultation with me or any Ayurvedic Physician holding the BAMS degree.
In Ayurvedic medicine, a classical formula known as Shatavari-Yashti-Yoga is typically used to correct heavy periods. This formula has been tested in a clinical study and proven to be highly effective in treating Menorrhagia, Metrorrhagia, and Meno-metrorrhagia (see study). Unfortunately, this formula is not sold as a formulated product, but it can be made very easily but should only be used under the supervision of an Ayurvedic doctor.
This formula is made up of three ingredients:
1. Shatavari (Asparagus Racemosus)
2. Licorice Root
3. Rice Water (Optional)
Shatavari, a powerful adaptogen, is used for reducing pain, improving fertility, increasing breast milk in nursing mothers and regulating hormones as it is a uterine tonic, phytoestrogen-rich herb, and galactagogue. Due to its adaptogenic properties, Shatavari may reduce cortisol, thus allowing progesterone levels to elevate.
Licorice alters the body’s hormones by dramatically impacting the function of the adrenal glands – which also play a significant role in progesterone production. Many doctors suggest that Licorice may reduce estrogen and promote progesterone by preventing its breakdown. The DGL supplements do not have the same effects in my experience.
Most people worry that Licorice root will increase their blood pressure, however, in clinical research and practice this only occurs when patients take large doses (15-20g) over a long period of time. In patients who are already hypertensive, it may immediately raise blood pressure – the best solution in such patients is to first correct the blood pressure problem.
This combination of Shatavari and Licorice appears to be a highly effective method of balancing the main hormones responsible for regulating menstruation. Typically, this formula is made with the juice of the Shatavari and the powder of Licorice root, however using both herbs in equal proportions and according to the correct calculated dose in powder or tablet form still appears (in my clinical experience) to work, though with slightly less potency.
Hibiscus – A Traditional Remedy
In order to stop bleeding, the use of natural styptics/hemostatics is needed. One of the best choices for this is Hibiscus (Red) flowers. You can get the powder of this at health stores or any ethnic food store.
Clinically, I have found that Hibiscus reduces bleeding, fever, blood sugar and mucus, but can lead to vaginal dryness if overused, so use it with caution. In Ayurveda, It is used for several disorders of both the reproductive and urinary system and is also a refrigerant and anti-spasmodic.
Consuming 2 tablespoons of fresh Hibiscus flower juice, twice a day, for 3-5 days is usually enough to stop the menstrual bleeding. Hibiscus tea made from the flowers or powder can be used. (Do not add honey, rock candy is preferred).
A Stronger herbal Remedy:
Combining the powders of Raspberry leaf, Shatavari, Hibiscus flowers, Licorice root and Rose flowers made into a tea and taken 2-3 times a day depending on severity – may be a good option to reduce heavy periods.
CAUTION: If you suffer from this problem, and don’t take the necessary actions, it may lead to severe anemia or worse. The remedies given here are very basic and generalized, therefore if they do not aid, stronger treatment is needed and you must consult a doctor immediately.
If you have a history of excessive menstrual bleeding and wish for Ayurvedic treatment, consult an Ayurvedic Physician to get a proper evaluation of your specific condition and receive stronger & more effective help.
(Always use medicinal herbs under the supervision of a doctor)
To schedule a consultation, Click Here.
by Dr. Nishal R.