Is Your Throat Sore Just Before Your Period?

Here’s an interesting observation by more than a handful of my female patients: Their throats are sore for a few days just before their monthly periods. It doesn’t go on to a cold or other more severe symptoms. Just a transient sore throat. Then it goes away.

If you’ve been following my blogs, articles, and especially if you read my book, Sleep, Interrupted, there’s a simple explanation. During your monthly cycles, progesterone levels increase with ovulation, but drops when there’s no egg fertilization. One relatively unknown property of progesterone is that it’s an upper airway muscle dilator. It literally tenses your tongue muscles. When in deep sleep, your muscles (as well as your tongue and other throat muscles) tend to relax to various degrees depending on your sleep stage. If you have less progesterone on board, then it’s more likely to fall back, obstructing your breathing, leading to a temporary vacuum effect in the throat, suctioning up small amounts of normal stomach juices. All this causes a temporary deep sleep deficiency. If you eat a late meal, more of these juices will come up. But once progesterone levels begin to increase again, the tongue tenses, and sleep quality improves as well.

Sometimes, the inflammation in the throat increases to the point of significant deep sleep deprivation, leading to some of the more severe symptoms as pre-menstrual headaches, fatigue, irritability, and weight gain.

For you women out there, do you experience sore throats just before your periods? Please enter your responses in the comments box below.

One of the most common questions asked in the comments below is, "What can I do to help with this problem?" I answer this in my new podcast.



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857 thoughts on “Is Your Throat Sore Just Before Your Period?

  1. I get a cough for almost a week before my period with a runny nose, tiredness, and headaches. Then usually the day before/of I get a sore throat and sore glands in my neck. It goes away when my period starts. The cough is very annoying because of covid because obviously I get a bit freaked out at first before I realise what it is

  2. So what can be done about it? I was getting severely swollen tonsils before and during my period every month so years ago I had them taken out however, I still get sore throats (not as severe) headache, muscle aches etc. can anything balance out the hormone just during that time?

  3. So ever since I found this blog…I decided to start taking notes anytime I start getting these symptoms.

    For the past four months I’ve taken detailed notes that all correlate and start ONE WEEK EXACTLY before my period is due to begin, and it is mind blowing.

    This bubble in my throat…dry throat issue it happens exactly a week before my period is due and last into my period.

    It’s naggy and annoying. It doesn’t hurt when I swallow but the feeling is like something is slightly tied around my throat.

    Also it tends to make me more anxious and as a result I sometimes end up getting really bad panic attacks.

  4. Yes…all true. It’s amazing when I track my hormonal cycles just how much of my mood and physical symptoms are tied to my cycle! I get the same tightness in my throat, allergy type symptoms, increased anxiety,, itchy skin at times, but only during that week to 10 days before. Then after my period it all goes away.

  5. Pls what is the causes of sore throat after period and dry mouth,i always stay hydrated but is not working for it,and once i start the another period,the sore throat stop,once the period stop the sore throat start,the period is not flowing properly also

  6. Since February 2021 I get sick around the same time each month. My symptoms are sore throat, headache, fatigue, cramps and nauseous. Usually goes away after my period. I’m just really concerned all of my test come back negative so is this normal?

  7. I think this is one of the most significant information for me. And i’m glad reading your article. Looking more from you. Thanks