THE BODY THAT FUNCTIONS
We start with a little brush up on our biology.
The nine major organ systems in the human body are the
▪️ Integumentary system
▪️ The musculoskeletal system,
▪️ The respiratory system
▪️ The circulatory system
▪️ The digestive system
▪️ The excretory system
▪️ The nervous system
▪️ The endocrine system and
▪️ The reproductive system
These systems are made up of 78 organs, various tissues of which there are four major types: connective tissue, epithelial tissue, muscle tissue, and nervous tissue. Connective tissue supports other tissues and binds them together (bone, blood, and lymph tissues). Epithelial tissue provides a covering (skin, the linings of the various passages inside the body). Muscles and nervous tissues coordinate the organs and systems. There are 600 muscles and 7 trillion nerves. All these make up the 30 trillion cells in the body!
The body however functions as a single entity despite its various parts. Each system has its own roles and keeps the entire body unit functional. Understanding the function of the body therefore is important in detecting when the body is losing function in one area or the other. This is the bane of medical practice. Now it took me 10years to study medicine and i don’t expect to break it down in one hour, however, they are important basics we should know:
▪️ The unit of the body is the cell. Cells come together to make tissues, tissues group together to form organs and organs are grouped into systems. Each system functions to keep you feeling well.
▪️ Anytime you don’t feel too well, something has gone wrong somewhere. Anytime the body does not do what it is expected to do, something is wrong somewhere.
▪️ Problems in the body can be of Functional origin, Structural origin or from External factors. Functional problems are due to deficiency in how a system works which can be due to genetic factors, birth defects, loss of or abnormal function from external sources. Structural problems can also be due to genetic factors, birth defects or structural deformity from external factors as well.
Our major interest is in the Reproductive system.
A normal functioning male reproductive system is one where spermatogenesis (sperm production) occurs daily. This means that anytime a man has intercourse, he should release semen which should contain sperm cells. If this semen is released into a woman regularly (remember we have said regular means a minimum of 3 times a week), she should get pregnant within a year of this exposure.
A normal functioning female reproductive system is one which has a regular monthly cycle whose length is anywhere between 24 and 35 days, and in which ovulation takes place.
This cycle should be divided into 4 phases;
▪️ Bleeding which marks the beginning of the cycle. The day the bleeding(period/menses) starts, even if a drop, is the 1st day of the cycle. This phase lasts between 2 and 7 days normally.
▪️ Dryness where nothing else is discharged from the vagina after the period. This should last a few days; 2 to 5 days on the average.
▪️ The wet days which starts with raw-pap like wetness (not everybody observes this) and progresses to the egg white like stretchy mucus. This signifies the body preparing for ovulation. The wet phase ends with ovulation taking place which is the release of the egg(s). Not every woman will notice these levels of wetness, but if you pay attention to your body, you shod notice some degree of wetness in the cycle after the first two phases. If it is not noticed, and other symptoms of ovulation common to that woman is not observed, the body probably did not ovulate that month. This is why it is important to know how your body functions so you can detect when something is different.
▪️ Dryness: another set of dry days occur after ovulation. No real discharge is noticed from the vagina. This leads to another cycle which begins again with bleeding wetness.
When a woman observes all these and is exposed to regular intercourse with a man, she should also be able to fall pregnant with a year.
When unusual discharge different from what we have described occurs, for both men and women, one should know that there is a problem with the function of the system. When all the phases we have described for both the man and the woman doesn’t occur as anticipated, something is wrong with the functioning of the system. When a man and woman live together and have sexual relations regularly and without contraception and still fail to fall pregnant, something is wrong somewhere with the function of the system.
Getting knowledge of what should be is not a sign of doubt or fear. It is a form of empowerment that helps you know when to take action. Detecting an abnormality in the function of your system is also not a death sentence. Broadening your knowledge on what might be wrong by discussing with a fertility counselor allays any worries, gives you better information and sets you on the right path to recovery.
Usually when something is wrong in other system eg;
✔️ Circulatory or Cardiovascular system, you suddenly notice faster beating of the heart, most people would run to the hospital
✔️ Excretory system, you go to urinate and you pass out blood, most persona would run to the hospital or pharmacy as fast as their legs can carry them. Digestive system, you finish eating and notice the stomach starts swelling, some persons will call all the doctors on their contact list. I can continue to give examples😂😂😂.
When it comes to the reproductive system however, many people hide their symptoms.
• A woman stays months without seeing her period, she is not pregnant and she doesn’t seek to know why, she might even start drinking various concoctions than going for medical checks. A woman whose menses flowed for 5 days suddenly starts having 2 days scanty period, but rather than seek medical treatments immediately, decides to wait it out. A man notices unusual events in his reproductive system and hides it because he doesn’t want to be seen as less of a man. These are the reasons why reproductive health challenge linger and get complicated and ultimately become more difficult and more expensive to treat.
Our take home from today’s lecture is know how your body functions by paying attention to it. When you notice something unusual, do not ignore it. Get clearance from a professional that it is nothing, or get quick information on what the condition might be and start on time to tackle it.
If you have been trying to get solutions, don’t relent. If you keep at it,solutions will come. If you have been dilly dallying, this is the time to take action and start the journey of discovery and restoration. If you do nothing, nothing will change.
So now you know how the reproductive system functions. If you think everything is functioning normally, and you don’t get the results you expect, you might be getting something wrong. If you are on treatment, ensure you review after 3 months if you don’t get the results you want. Keep learning and searching and soon your results will come no matter how long it takes.
If you do not quit, you will win!