What Your Period Says About Your Health

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It’s that time of the month again. You’ve probably proclaimed that your period is the absolute worst at one point in your life. What your period says about your health can reveal more than you know.  Whilst the time of the month is often far more inconvenient than not, there is one bright side.

Your menstrual cycle can reveal more about your health than just pregnancy. Because of menstruation’s tight relationship to hormone health, your period can provide information that extends beyond the reproductive tract. The experts at Midwife 360 in South Florida have compiled some of the most important bits of information regarding ‘that time of the month’ and what it says about your health.

What A Normal Period Looks Like

A woman’s menstrual cycle occurs when her body removes its uterine lining each month. The uterine is preparing for the probable implantation of a fertilized egg in the womb, thus, resulting in pregnancy. However, because there is no fertilized egg, our bodies must shed the lining and prepare for the following month. 

Periods can vary greatly from woman to woman. Where some can experience a regular cycle, others are irregular. Periods typically last three to seven days, and the usual cycle is 28 to 32 days.

Women can experience the following symptoms during their period:

  • Cramps
  • Breast tenderness
  • Bloating
  • Migraines
  • Lethargy
  • Mood changes
  • Food cravings.

Monitoring your symptoms, as well as the length of your cycle and the textures and colors, can help indicate important changes or issues about your health. 

What Your Period Color Means

Menstrual blood color can vary from black to bright red, as well as brown or orange. These changes in color are very normal and ObGyn’s are rarely concerned with the changes. 

Bright red: frequently indicates that you are at the start of your period and is shedding blood quickly. Don’t be alarmed, this is usually the sign of a healthy, regular menstruation. 

Pinkish: when a period is just beginning the vaginal discharge can mix with the blood creating a pink tone. This is just a diluted version which can also mean your period is lighter.  In some cases, this can show signs of low estrogen. 

Diluted or watery: indication of severe anemia which is caused by a nutritional deficit.

Brown, dark brown/dark red: older blood found in the uterine lining that has oxidized. This often occurs at the end of a cycle. 

Large clots in a jam-colored red: when the uterus does not contract well and sheds blood quickly, blood remains in the uterus and clumps together. Thus, forming clots that can be big or small and deep in color. Have no fear, this is very normal. 

The only time most ObGyn’s raise concern is when spotting occurs between cycles. 

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Irregular Cycle

Again, as with other period-related issues, irregular periods may be completely normal. However, there are other variables that might be causing your inconsistent flow. For starters, stress might be a major factor here. 

When you’re anxious, your body creates extra cortisol, often known as the stress hormone. High levels of stress can disrupt the hormones that result in the production of an egg. This ultimately leads to your menstruation, so your period may be late or you may skip it entirely.

Another possibility is that you have polycystic ovarian syndrome. PCOS is a moderate (and treatable) hormone disease in which you develop excessive amounts of the male sex hormone androgen. Leading to increased hair growth and weight gain. Women with PCOS may not ovulate every month, therefore they may not have a period every month.

Furthermore, if you’ve had any type of medical treatment in your uterine cavity, such as abortion, scarring may make it more difficult for the blood to flow normally. 

Finally, if you engage in high-intensity workouts, you can experience an extremely light or nonexistent period. This is due to the fact that your body isn’t producing enough hormones. Talk to your doctor to determine the best course of action.

Heavy Flow? 

The problem with identifying your period as “heavy” or “light” differs depending on who you ask, making it difficult to measure. If your flow lasts more than seven days and you have to replace your tampon/pad every two hours, this is considered heavy bleeding.

However, it can also suggest other health issues that need to be addressed, such as 

  • Hypothyroidism
  • Adenomyosis
  • Uterine Fibroids
  • Von Willebrand Disease

Another thing to bear in mind is that some drugs can influence the sort of bleeding you’re experiencing. Non-hormonal copper IUDs can also make your period heavier. Certain birth control medications such as the Depo-Provera injection can alter the way you flow as well. 

If you are worried about the length and heaviness of your period, consult with your gynecologist.

Looking For A Better Way To Track Your Cycle? 

Unlike other devices, Tempdrop measures your temperature rather than hormones. For example, your sleeping temperature, or baseline body temperature(BBT). So, whether you have regular cycles, irregular periods, or awaiting fertility to return, Tempdrop can help you detect temperature variations that are key to maintaining ovulation. 

Tempdrop provides remarkable precision in BBT measurement. Science is leading the way for female reproductive technology.  Tempdrop, on the other hand, is the most convenient and affordable choice available.

Midwife 360 has partnered with Tempdrop to provide a better look at what your period says about your health. Midwife 360, located in Palm Beach, began in 2014 and is now a staple to women’s care in South Florida. Some of the services offered at Midwife 360 include; holistic gynecology as well as midwifery services such as routine women’s care, family planning, and pregnancy care and birthing.

We are passionate about this tracking system and want everyone to experience it for themselves. Be sure to use our coupon code to receive a 10% discount on your order. To apply the coupon, copy and paste the link below and falling love with Tempdrop!

http://www.tempdrop.com/discount/MIDWIFE360 

National Midwifery Week 2021: Meet the Midwives

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National Midwifery Week 2021 is here! In the United States, midwives have been serving communities for more than a century. National Midwifery Week was created by ACNM to celebrate the work and dedication of midwives and midwife-led care. From community education to prenatal visits to deliveries, ACNM’s national week of celebration is a time to show your support for all that you do.

This year’s theme, “Midwives for Every Community,” acknowledges the unique skills and abilities of all midwives across the country. The ACNM aims to celebrate midwives in all areas of the country that work in diverse environments to care for women and families. The week will focus on how midwives help address health disparities in underserved communities, provide culturally competent care, and improve health outcomes overall.

Meet the Midwives at Midwife360

P. Fadwah Halaby

Founder of Midwife360 in West Palm Beach, P. Fadwah Halaby was born on March 17 in Washington DC. Fadwah is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, as well as a Certified Nurse Midwife. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree with a concentration in nutrition from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA. Fadwah studied both childbirth education and home-birth training in Colorado. She is a Certified Nurse Midwife by the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing.

When taking a deeper look into Fadwah and the reason behind her passion for midwifery, these were her answers to some of our questions.

Why Did You Choose Your Career?

“I was moved by Spiritual Midwifery– an iconic book written by Ina May Gaskin- the mother of modern midwifery. I read this book while in college at the age of 19, and knew I had found my calling.”

How Long Have You Been Working in Midwifery?

“I gave birth to my first child in 1985 as a ‘free birth’- confident in my ability to birth through my self-study in midwifery over the previous 5 years. I went on to assist another woman in free birth with a breech baby in 1986. In the early 90s, I trained as a lay midwife, completed my nurse-midwife training in 2005, and started my first job as a CNM in 2006.”

What is Your Favorite Part of Your Job?

“Knowing that I had a part in empowering a woman and family through the birthing process. Also, being able to assist women that no one else will help, for example, high order VBACs, twins, and breeches.

What Do You Think is Most Important About What You Do?

“Educating families about the normalcy of birth, as well as protecting the spiritual experience for mama and baby.”

What are 3 Facts About You That Patients Should Know?

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  • I live a plant-based lifestyle
  • I practice Native American spirituality
  • I am Palestinian

What Motto Do You Live By?

“Live and let live.”

What is Your Favorite Book and Why?

The Presence Process, this book has changed my life for the better. It has made me a better and happier person by enabling me to exist in the present moment.”

What is Your Favorite Quote and Why?

” A quote by Octavia Butler says, ‘All that you touch you change. All that you change, changes you. The only lasting truth is change. God is change.’ This quote for me means nothing is permanent, time marches on, and flowing with it is the only way to stay sane!”

What are Some of Your Goals for 2022?

“Continue to organize Midwife360 so that all of our employees feel supported. Create a space where everyone who enters feels like they have come home. Achieve a sustainable work/life balance, including time with my kids and grandkids.”

Joanna Bronkema

Another midwife at Midwife360 is Joanna Bronkema who was born on November 21 in Grand Rapids, MI. Joanna is a Certified Nurse Midwife and Nurse Practitioner, however, she first began her career as an environmental biologist. She went back to school and attended the University of California San Francisco where she received her RN, CNM, and NP degrees.

Below are the answers to our questions to get a better understanding of why Joanna chose the midwifery path.

Why Did You Choose Your Career?

“I love science and I love supporting women’s rights. Bringing a midwife approach, who uses science and compassion to empower women around their health.”

How Long Have You Been Working in Midwifery?

“I started teaching reproductive health in developing countries in 2010. I then became a doula, a nurse, and finished by receiving my NP and midwife license in 2016.”

What is Your Favorite Part of Your Job?

“Watching families find out that they can take back their own power surrounding their health and birth.”

What Do You Think is Most Important About What You Do?

“Health and patient autonomy are the most important objectives of my work.”

What are Facts About You That Patients Should Know?

“I see myself as a lifeguard at birth, letting the family take the lead while quietly monitoring for safety.”

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What Motto Do You Live By?

I am love, I am energy, I am peace.”

What is Your Favorite Book and Why?

Real Food for Pregnancy by Lily Nichols. Nourishing the self nourishes the baby and sets into motion lifelong healthy habits.”

What is Your Favorite Quote and Why?

“The quote by Gandhi that says, ‘Be the change you want to see in the world.’ This is because we all need some inspiration, and living with integrity gives my life purpose.”

What are Some of Your Goals for 2022?

“I joined Midwife360 in 2021 and we moved to a bigger, and nicer office a few months later. So, in 2022 I’d like to continue to see us grow and develop as a cohesive team.”

Lauren Marie Danella

Our final midwife at Midwife360 is Lauren Marie Danella who was born on June 5 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Lauren is a Certified Nurse Midwife as well as Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner with a dual master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Lauren worked as a  Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse, and as a Pediatric Nurse for orphaned children with complicated medical conditions. She also studies the art of natural childbirth with the midwives of Bali, Indonesia.

Below are the answers to the questions we asked Lauren to learn why she chose midwifery.

Why Did You Choose Your Career?

After working in an orphanage for 8 years in Mexico, I was looking for the next step in life. I know I’m happiest when helping others and wanted to find a career I could be passionate about by knowing I was helping others in a loving way. In the orphanage, I saw children healing from their trauma just by connecting with a staff member and feeling loved. 

Midwifery seemed to be a way to help mothers bond with their babies from the very beginning, so they are loved from the very beginning and grow up with the strength they need to face the world.”

How Long Have You Been Working in Midwifery?

I started working in the birth world as a doula in 2009. Then as a nurse in the NICU and pediatrics. I graduated from my midwifery program in 2016.”  

What is Your Favorite Part of Your Job?

“Seeing our peaceful, smiling babies who were born gently at home. When parents who have had previous children in the hospital sometimes ask, “Is she okay? she never cries.”

What Do You Think is Most Important About What You Do?

Creating an environment where our mothers feel safe and supported. When there is no fear and doubt, this makes for a faster, more comfortable labor, and babies take their first

breath coming into the world where they feel the love surrounding them from the beginning. This is when babies are born gently.” 

What are important Facts About You That Patients Should Know?

  • Multiple trainings with Debra Pascali-Bonari, creator of Orgasmic Birth
  • Lived in Bali, Indonesia for over a year, working at Bumi Sehat Birthing Center and trained by Ibu Robin Lim and Lianne Shwartz
  • Graduated from The University of Pennsylvania, one of the top midwifery schools in the country. It is also recognized as the top nursing school in the world.
  • Before midwifery, I helped to open an orphanage and elementary school in Mexico, where I taught yoga, meditation, and nutrition.  

What Motto Do You Live By?

“Keep Life Simple.”

What is Your Favorite Quote and Why?

“My favorite quote is by Liza Rossi and she says, ‘Love is the Answer to Everything,’ which I find to be so true.

What are Some of Your Goals for 2022?

“To continue learning and learning new practices and techniques to have the ability to give each mother and baby the care and love they deserve.”

Visit Midwife360 and Meet the Midwives

Midwife360 began in 2014 and is now a staple to women’s care in South Florida. At Midwife360, they offer holistic gynecology as well as midwifery services such as routine women’s care, family planning, and pregnancy care and birthing.

Along with their three midwives, their team also includes Sandra Alandete (Admin), Vanessa Scoz (MA/Admin), and Dawn Downs (Office Manager). This team of beautiful and intelligent women all share the same passion for combing traditional care methods with modern medicine. Furthermore, they bring together a practice based on a deep connection between provider and patient, individual needs, and true healing.

Holistic Gynecology FAQ

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Q. What is a Holistic Approach?

A holistic approach to modern medicine is characterized by treating the person as a whole, rather than treating specific diseases or symptoms. This approach is concerned with prevention and health care, not simply curing disease after it has taken hold. The support should also consider their physical, emotional, social, and spiritual wellbeing.

Q. What is Holistic Gynecology

Holistic gynecology is a branch of medicine that focuses on preventive care and enhancing well-being. This type of gynecology provides healthcare throughout a woman’s entire life and addresses holistic women’s health, rather than just treating illness once it occurs. 

The holistic approach uses and emphasizes natural therapies that promote wellness for the body, mind, and spirit, as well as using traditional medicine when needed. It also helps vaginal health by using natural remedies instead of harmful chemicals.

Q. How is Holistic Gynecology Different Than the Rest

One main difference has to do with treatment. A mainstream ob-gyn relies on pharmaceutical drugs, synthetic hormones, and surgical procedures to solve women’s health problems. Holistic gynecology chooses treatments such as herbal remedies, supplements, nutrition, and mindfulness.  It also supports the natural processes of the body and traditional treatments when necessary.

Another difference is in how a holistic gynecologist thinks about health care for women. A typical ob-gyn says that with proper medical treatment, she can help most women with their health problems. A holistic practitioner believes this as well, but also knows that healing does not always come from a pill. 

Q. What is Offered with a Holistic Gynecologist

Healthcare at a Holistic Gynecologist, like Midwife360, offers primary care and treatment for women of all ages. From their first PAP-smear through menopause. It includes preventative measures to detect and treat gynecological conditions before they become more difficult to manage. When mainstream medical care is necessary, it also offers a support system that can work in conjunction with other practices or hospitals.

At Midwife360 we offer and educate on:

  • PAP-smears
  • Annual Examinations / Office Visits
  • Problem Visit Examinations
  • HPV
  • Thermography
  • STDs
  • IUD or implant placement
  • Pregnancy and prevention strategies
  • Blood Draw & Testing
  • Birth Control (natural and artificial methods)
  • Fertility issues (natural and artificial methods)
  • Mammograms and ultrasound prescriptions
  • Any vaginal or genital discomfort
  • Convenient electronic prescription and medical records

Q. Is it Important to Use Organic Feminine Products

Yes. It is important to use organic feminine products because you must protect your delicate vaginal mucosa from chemical irritants. This can be done by using 100% cotton tampons or pads and natural, non-chemical-based feminine care products such as menstrual cups.

It can be bad for vaginal health to use non-organic because tampons absorb vaginal and uterine fluid to keep you dry. This allows the vagina’s delicate bacterial balance to be disrupted, allowing bad bacteria to grow. Thus, releasing chemicals into your body (including pesticides from non-organic cotton).

Q. How Do I Find A Holistic Gynecologist

If you are in the South Florida area and are looking for a provider who takes the holistic approach, look no further. Founded by P. Fadwah Halaby CNM, Midwife360 is a holistic evidence-based practice for midwifery services such as routine women’s care, family planning, pregnancy care, and birthing. 

If you are ready to make an appointment visit the Midwife360 today.