You’re (still) confused about the length of my cycleGloria Tebelman/Rd.com
Twenty-eight days: That’s the number you’ve had stuck in your head since you first learned about the birds and the bees. And that’s the length almost half of women in one survey believe every menstrual cycle should be. They, and you, are not totally wrong: An average menstrual cycle is 28 days long; but as few as 21 days and as many as 35 is also totally normal. To keep track of yours: Day one is the first day of your period, and last is the day before your next period arrives. In case you’re counting for baby-making reasons: Ovulation occurs at about day 14 of an average 28-day cycle, and you’re most likely to get pregnant if you have sex during the three days before or on the day of ovulation. Here are unusual menstrual cycle symptoms to watch for.
PMS symptoms can take a big tollGloria Tebelman/Rd.com
And don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a group of symptoms that occur a week or two before your period and subside once you actually start bleeding. The symptoms can range from acne flare-ups, swollen or tender breasts, and fatigue and headaches to depressed mood, trouble sleeping, crying spells, and irritability. More than 85 percent of menstruating women experience at least one PMS symptom, according to estimates from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Check out these 11 ways to treat and ease the pain of PMS.