What Are Period Cramps
If you deal with painful periods, during that time of the month, rest assured youre not alone. Also called Dysmenorrhea, Period cramps affect more than half of women on their periods for 1-2 days a month, and sometimes longer. Period pain ranges from dull to severe and is typically concentrated in the lower abdomen and lower back.
How To Tell If Your Period Cramping Is Normal
Each girl or woman typically experiences a similar level of cramps from one month to the next, says Jackie Thielen, MD, an internist and womens health specialist at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. For some women, monthly pain is minor. For others, it can be quite debilitating.
The main question doctors ask when determining whether your cramps are normal is Are they normal for you? Dr. Thielen says.
Drink More Water During Your Period Cramps
Drinking enough water during your period can help to prevent the body from getting dehydrated. Water intake can help to regulate proper functioning of the body cells. Lack of enough water in the body system can dispose women to physical and mental stress and improper functioning.
It is advisable to drink enough water at all times to keep your body active. But how much water is enough?
The Institute of Medicine recommends 9 cup of fluid total per day for women. The reduction in the amount of estrogen and progesterone can cause retention of water in the body. Drinking enough water can help to flush your system and keep you hydrated always.
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Yoga Exercises And Menstrual Cramps
Many girls and young women have cramps when they have their periods. Cramps usually feel like pain in the abdomen , pelvis , lower back, and upper legs. The pain usually hurts worst on the day before the period begins and on the first day of the period.
If cramps are heavy , it you might not feel like you can go to school. Instead of missing school, you can try stretching and moderate-intensity exercise to help relieve the pain caused by cramps.
You may feel like you have less energy than normal during the first couple of menstrual days, when bleeding and cramping are usually heavier. High-intensity exercises like running may not be appropriate. Instead, yoga and breathing exercises can be a good way to help reduce the pain caused by cramping. Yoga also reduces stress, improves flexibility, and strengthens muscles.
Massage Lower Back And Relax
This doesnt help a lot to minimize the pain. But it helps me to relax, and by doing that I can fall asleep faster. And that would be always the ultimate goal. Sleeping cures the pain, and when nothing helps, I just try to fall asleep. Lay on your stomach and ask someone to massage your lower back. If you want, you can also use essential oils for better results.
There is more information about essential oils and its benefits, you can read them here!
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Foods That Might Help With Cramps
If youre looking for the best food for period cramps, choose light, healthy fruits and vegetables that wont be heavy in your stomach. Fruits and veggies, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds can help decrease inflammation in the body and can help menstrual cramps.
The great news is the best foods for period cramps can often be found in your fridge! Top health foods on this list are common and great choices when youre looking for what to eat when you have cramps. There are plenty of foods that might help with menstrual cramps.
If youre looking to adjust your diet and stock up on foods that might help with cramps, here are some to try:
How To Relieve Painful Menstrual Cramps
Period cramps are annoying, aggravating and at times, downright terrible – and they may be a regular part of the menstrual cycle for more than half of women who have periods.
When you’re having menstrual cramps , you can have pain in your belly, hips, lower back, and even your inner thighs. The pain in your belly may also be accompanied by pressure, and in severe cases, loose stools, upset stomach, and vomiting.
Even though your menstrual cramps may be normal, it doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do to relieve the pain. Here are a few things you can do .
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Fish Oil And Vitamin B1
Researchers studied the effects of vitamin B1 and fish oil on dysmenorrhea symptoms in high school students. The young women were separated into 4 different groups. One group took 100 milligrams of vitamin B1 per day. Another took 500 milligrams of fish oil per day. One group took a combination of both vitamin B1 and fish oil daily. The last group took a placebo. The women took the treatment at the beginning of their menstrual cycles and continued for 2 months. Compared to those in the placebo group, those who took vitamin B1, fish oil, or both reported significantly less pain. The women who took fish oil or B1 also reported their pain didn’t last as long compared to those in the placebo group.
What Can I Do For Cramps
If cramps bother you, you can:
- Take a pain reliever. Talk to your mom or dad or your doctor about which medicine is best for you. They can help you figure out how much to take and how often.
- Exercise! Being physically active can ease cramps, probably because exercise releases endorphins, which are chemicals in the body that make you feel good.
- Get warm. Try placing a warm water bottle, warm heating pad, or warm compress on your belly or take a warm bath.
If these tips dont help, talk to your parent or your doctor about other treatments.
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Home And Natural Remedies
Period cramps are a widespread, painful sensation that many people who menstruate experience at some point in their lives. Many individuals may find relief by using natural remedies, such as:
- Exercise: Research suggests that more physically active people are less likely to experience a painful period. Exercise can help
Enjoy A Cup Of Ginger Or Cinnamon Tea
Going natural to get rid of that pain is very awesome. Drinking a cup of cinnamon or ginger tea or both can help you to fight against really bad cramps during period. The ginger tea has been found to serve as an anti-inflammatory substance which reduces pain.
The cinnamon tea also has anti-spasmodic properties which can help to reduce the risk of pain during menstruation. Enjoying a cup of these tea is of great benefit working tremendously in different ways.
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Up The Magnesium In Your Diet To Help Nerve And Muscle Function
Dietary magnesium seems to help ease the pain of cramps, says DeJarra Sims, ND, an assistant professor of naturopathic medicine at Bastyr Universitys California campus in San Diego and the author of Your Healthiest Life Now. A Cochrane review of dietary and other remedies published in 2001 concluded that getting enough magnesium can help relieve pain.
Magnesium is found in many foods and as a supplement if you cant get what you need from your diet. Magnesium helps regulate nerve and muscle functioning, among other vital tasks researchers who evaluated the evidence on magnesium call it a promising treatment for menstrual cramps. But they cannot recommend a specific dose, because researchers have studied various doses. The recommended dietary allowance of magnesium for women of childbearing age is about 320 mg daily. An ounce of dry almonds or one half cup of boiled spinach each has about 80 mg.
Dr. Sims says the dose you may need depends on the severity of your cramps and other factors. Ask your doctor about the best magnesium intake for you.
Plan Your Work Schedule Around Your Cramps If Possible
The first tip in maintaining a sense of control over your work lifeinstead of feeling as though your periods are controlling youis to track your period, says Ann Roberts, chief people officer at Flo. “Tracking your internal changes throughout the different stages of the menstrual cycle is empowering,” she says. Keeping up with your cycle can help you determine when you’re going to experience cramps, and help you plan ahead at work so you can take some time off or reserve for low-lift tasks. To do that, however, it’s important to know the four stages of your cycle.
The first is the follicular stage, which Roberts says is the time to be most productive during the menstrual cycle because progesterone hormone levels are low, which has a sedative effect on the body. The lack of progesterone may make you feel more energized to complete in-depth tasks.
Ovulatory phaseand luteal phase
Next is the ovulatory phase,followed by the luteal phase, which is a time where you’ll begin to experience PMS symptoms due to an increase in progesterone. These hormone fluctuations might make you more introverted and reflective, making it a good time to complete detail-oriented tasks.
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Take Steps To Reduce Stress
“Stress affects your body in many ways, including lowering your threshold for pain,” says Dr. Borchardt.
Reducing stress is easier said than done, of course, but taking steps to do so can help you find relief from period cramps.
In addition to exercise, here are several ways to reduce stress:
When Do People Usually Get Cramps
It is no secret that pain symptoms can appear at specific times in a womans cycle.
- Perimenstrual cramps. Pain starts before your period and lasts during menstruation. It can be felt in the lower back and thighs.
- Mid-cycle/ovulation pain. This pain can also occur in the middle of your cycle. Ovulation pain is usually felt in the lower abdomen. It may last from a few hours to even a couple of days.
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Get Yourself A Heating Pad
Heat is essential. Studies have established that applying constant heat at areas with cramps, reduces the severity of the pain.
Disposable heating wraps are subtle and easier to maintain, as it is placed under your clothes. The heat also lasts a few hours, which is convenient. MenstruHeat is one such heat patch you can get!
What To Do When Menstrual Cramps Are Severe
The period cramp relief tips above are a good place to start, but they may not work for every woman especially for those who have very painful cramps.
If you’re experiencing serious pain during your period, it’s important to talk to your OB-GYN. She or he will ask you about your symptoms and cycle and can recommend lifestyle changes that may help ease your pain, as well as perform a pelvic exam and prescribe medications, if needed.
“For instance, hormonal birth control medications are sometimes used to treat menstrual cramps and the pain that accompanies a period,” adds Dr. Borchardt.
Plus, in some cases, severe pain may be a sign of something more serious.
“Beyond the significant impact that period pain can have on your everyday life, the cramps themselves aren’t typically a medical concern,” says Dr. Borchardt. “However, severe menstrual cramps can sometimes be caused by a more serious gynecologic condition.”
In certain cases, severe period cramps can be a sign of:
- Endometriosis uterine tissue gets implanted in your fallopian tubes, ovaries or pelvic lining
- Uterine fibroids noncancerous uterine growths that can cause pain
- Adenomyosis uterine tissue grows into the muscular wall of the uterus
- Pelvic inflammatory disease infection of your uterus, fallopian tube and/or ovaries
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Ways To Combat Period Cramps At Work
Have you ever taken leave from work because of your unbearable period cramps? I have. One day off work can cause you to back log your work and deadlines. Getting back to work from that one- or two-day break usually just increases work pressure, not to add how emotionally and mentally drained you already are.
Here are ways you can conquer your period cramps at work, and avoid taking a precious day off!
Can You Heal Menstrual Cramps With Home Remedies
Most of the time, menstrual cramps can be treated by women at home.
But if your pain is severe and impacts your lifestyle, dont be afraid to talk to your doctor. You might need medicines that are only available by prescription or some other treatment to help.
To help reduce period pain, here are 10 safe and effective home remedies for menstrual cramp relief.
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Heat To Ease Menstrual Cramps
An old fashioned hot water bottle or more modern heating pad applied to the abdomen or tummy helps bring down the pain and also means you relax. That in itself will bring down the pain. Try our cherry stone pillow which has been made in Germany by a company that employs people with disabilities. This bag of organic cherry stones moulds itself to your body and gently but efficiently relieves menstrual cramps.
How Is The Cause Of Severe Period Pain Diagnosed
To diagnose severe period pain, your health care provider will ask you about your medical history and do a pelvic exam. You may also have an ultrasound or other imaging test. If your health care provider thinks you have secondary dysmenorrhea, you might have laparoscopy. It is a surgery that that lets your health care provider look inside your body.
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Facts About Period Pain
If you have dysmenorrhoea you are not alone. Around 80% of women experience period pain at some stage in their lifetime. You can suffer from period pain from your early teens right up to the menopause. Most women experience some discomfort during menstruation, especially on the first day. But in 5% to 10% of women the pain is severe enough to disrupt their life. If your mother suffered period pains, you are more likely to suffer too. In 40% of women, period pain is accompanied by premenstrual symptoms, such as bloating, tender breasts, swollen stomach, lack of concentration, mood swings, clumsiness and tiredness.
There are two different types of period pain:
Period Pain Caused By Contraceptive Devices
An intrauterine device is a type of contraception made from copper and plastic that fits inside the womb. It can also sometimes cause period pain, particularly during the first few months after it’s inserted.
You may notice a change in your normal pattern of pain if your period pain is linked to a medical condition or a contraceptive IUD. For example, the pain may be more severe or it may last much longer than normal.
You may also have:
See a GP if you have any of these symptoms as well as period pain.
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