We as women are so used to experiencing various types of pains and discomforts during our cycles that we may lose sight of what is normal versus what merits seeing a health practitioner. Of course, the benefit of learning about Fertility Awareness and charting your cycle is that you become acutely aware of what signs to be concerned about.

One of the most important conditions that you need to identify and treat immediately is called Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), because not treating it can lead to blocked fallopian tubes, among other conditions. Although it’s possible to not have any symptoms, it’s more likely that you will have one or several of the following:

  • Pain in your lower abdomen
  • Fever
  • Painful urination
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Irregular menstrual bleeding

The other symptoms that you simply cannot ignore are those caused by an ectopic pregnancy — that is, one in which the fertilized egg attaches itself outside of the uterus (usually in the fallopian tube) and begins to grow. So if you think you might be pregnant and you experience any of the following symptoms, you should see a doctor or go to the ER immediately, since such pregnancies can be life threatening if they rupture and cause internal bleeding.

The cluster of symptoms may include the following:

  • Sharp stabbing pelvic pain
  • An overdue period
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
  • A positive pregnancy test
  • Fainting
  • Shoulder pain due to possible internal bleeding