Amenorrhea is the name for “absent periods”. If you are a reproductive age woman, menstrual periods should occur monthly (approximately every 28 days), unless you are pregnant, or breast-feeding. If you miss three or more expected periods, you are experiencing amenorrhea.
Amenorrhea can be caused by:
- Ovulation abnormalities (Polycystic Ovaries)
- Eating disorders
- Lack of body fat
- Over exercising
- Underachieving thyroid
Traditional Chinese Medicine understands amenorrhea as resulting from a blood deficiency, often caused by deficient kidney, spleen and liver energy. Exhaustion from overwork and overexercising, along with a consumption of a “cold” energy diet can lead to lack of menstrual periods.
Blood tests and an ultrasound may be recommended to investigate the possibility of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.
Treatment involves a combination of naturopathic medicine and acupuncture. Dietary change will usually involve the consumption of a “warming and blood building” diet. Protein intake may be increased, along with omega 3 fats and iron rich foods.
Traditional Chinese or Western herbal medicine is prescribed.
Acupuncture treatment is usually weekly, and involves blood building and tonifying acupuncture points, along with moxibustion (warming the needles). It is common to experience a first period in the first 4 – 8 weeks of treatment.