Toxic Shock Syndrome: What You Need to Know

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Menstrual Cycle Leave a Comment

If you were taught never to leave your tampon in for too long, it’s because of toxic shock syndrome (TSS). Toxic shock is a bacterial infection that can be life-threatening. It’s linked to period products, although it can happen for other reasons too. Even though it’s rare, understanding why TSS happens is important, and I think more education is needed. …

What Is a Menstrual Cup and How to Use One

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Menstrual Cycle, Period Leave a Comment

At first glance, menstrual cups may seem daunting. While this period product still falls behind tampons and pads in popularity, many people are starting to see the benefits of switching to a menstrual cup.  Menstrual cups can be worn longer than either tampons or pads, and can be reused for up to 10 years, making them a convenient, cost effective, …

The Effects of Addison’s Disease on Your Period

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Autoimmune Disease, Menstrual Cycle, Period Leave a Comment

Addison’s disease is a rare autoimmune condition that causes damage to the adrenal glands. The adrenal glands play a critical role in hormones like cortisol and aldosterone necessary for everyday functions.  Addison’s is also called adrenal insufficiency or adrenal failure, but it’s important not to confuse this diagnosis with HPA axis dysregulation, or what some people call adrenal fatigue. HPA …

Period Flu – What You Need to Know

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Period Leave a Comment

Everyone has heard of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), the constellation of physical and mental symptoms that happens when you are about to get your period. But have you ever heard of period flu?  While not technically a medical term and less well-understood than PMS, period flu is real to many women. As the name indicates, period flu symptoms mimic the real …

Why is My Menstrual Cycle Getting Shorter?

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Menstrual Cycle Leave a Comment

Some women get their period like clockwork, following the same pattern each month. For others, the menstrual cycle can vary by a few days each month. And for most women, cycle length gradually decreases with age. All of these patterns are completely normal.  However, if you notice your menstrual cycle is consistently getting shorter, or your typical 28-day cycle suddenly …

Intermittent Fasting For Women 

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Food, PCOS, What to Eat Leave a Comment

Intermittent fasting (IF) for women is complicated. There is a lot of positive research behind intermittent fasting, so it’s hard not to feel tempted to jump right in after hearing so many fasting success stories. But is it safe and effective for everyone? My goal with this article is to present the facts behind intermittent fasting— the good and the …

Is a Low Carb Diet Good for PCOS?

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: PCOS Leave a Comment

If you’ve been following me (and if you are new, welcome), you know I embrace a root-cause approach to women’s wellness versus a band aid that may help short-term but doesn’t go deep enough to make a long-term difference.  So when I get so many questions about low carb diets and PCOS, I know it’s time to address it, especially …

Ovulation Signs: How Do I Know If I’m Ovulating?

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Ovulation Leave a Comment

Ovulation, or when an egg is released from your ovary, is the midpoint of your menstrual cycle. Without ovulation, you can’t get pregnant. But aside from the importance of ovulation for fertility, it’s also important for your overall reproductive health. Learning about your body and tracking ovulation signs can give clues about your fertility, menstrual cycle, and hormones. Many people …

7 Benefits of Vitamin A

Dr. Jolene BrightenPublished: Herbs & Supplements Leave a Comment

Vitamin A is an essential nutrient critical for whole-body health. From your eyes to the immune system, vitamin A is a must-have. So, what does vitamin A do, and why do we need it? Here are seven reasons vitamin A should be part of your daily routine and what you can do to ensure you are getting enough. What is …