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.
What Is Menstrual Pain
Menstrual pain or cramps are pains in your lower abdomen that happen when your menstrual period begins . This pain may continue for 2 to 3 days. Cramps may be throbbing or aching, and they can be dull or sharp. Symptoms can range from a mild discomfort to serious pain that interferes with your normal activities.
Menstrual cramps are the leading cause of absenteeism in women younger than 30. Although over half of people who have menstrual periods feel some discomfort, 10% are temporarily disabled by symptoms.
Sip Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
Red raspberry leaf tea is known in the birth world as uterus tea. It helps with contractility of the uterus and is often recommended for women in the third trimester to prepare the uterus for labor. However, few women know it can also help with menstrual cramps. And dont worry- it wont put you into labor. Advocates for the tea recommend drinking it daily starting 3 months before TTC. This lines up perfectly with when you stop your birth control. If you have experienced multiple miscarriages in the past, you can discontinue the tea when you confirm pregnancy and restart it during the second trimester. Any red raspberry leaf tea will work, but here is a link to one if you are interested.
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Nsaids May Beat Acetaminophen For Menstrual Cramps
By Amy Norton, Reuters Health
3 Min Read
NEW YORK – The class of painkillers that includes ibuprofen and naproxen seems to work well against menstrual cramps, and may be more effective than acetaminophen, a new research review suggests.
The medications, collectively known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , are widely used for various aches and pains, but it has been unclear how they stack up against acetaminophen — the active ingredient in Tylenol and certain other brand-name pain relievers and fever reducers.
Acetaminophen, which is known as paracetamol in several countries, is also a component of a number of products marketed specifically for menstrual symptoms.
In the new review, researchers analyzed 73 clinical trials from 18 countries that tested various NSAIDs and acetaminophen for menstrual cramps. Across the studies, women given NSAIDs were 4.5 times more likely to report at least moderate pain relief than those given a placebo, or inactive pills.
They were also nearly twice as likely as acetaminophen users to report such improvements — though that finding was based on only three studies, the researchers report in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.
The journal is published by the Cochrane Collaboration, an international organization that evaluates medical research.
Exactly why they might be even more effective than acetaminophen is unclear, she told Reuters Health in an email.
When To See A Doctor
Severe menstrual pain can be a sign that something more serious is going on. Call your doctor if:
- Home remedies, including heat and pain relievers, do not ease your pain
- You cannot participate in normal activities because of your period pain
- Pain continues even after your period ends
- You’re also experiencing symptoms of depression
Severe menstrual pain could be a sign of other health conditions, including:
- Cervical stenosis
- Uterine fibroids
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When Should I Talk To My Ob
Since each womans body is unique, it can be difficult to tell whether the cramps youve grown used to are actually chronic. Use these common symptoms of chronic, severe menstrual cramps as a guideline to decide if its time to talk to an OB-GYN about your cramps.
- Your cramps interfere with your daily life
- The cramps last longer than two days
- No or minimal relief from over-the-counter pain medication
- You have cramps outside of your period
- You notice a change in how your cramps feel over time
Tylenol Vs Advil For Menstrual Cramps
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How Do I Store And/or Throw Out Tylenol Womens Menstrual Relief
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Relief For Premenstrual Syndrome Symptoms
Curcumin, a natural chemical in turmeric, may help with symptoms of premenstrual syndrome . One 2015 study looked at 70 women who took two capsules of curcumin for seven days before their period and three days after. Participants reported significant reduction in PMS.
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How Are Severe Menstrual Cramps Diagnosed
If you have severe menstrual cramps, a visit to your doctor is the only way to determine the exact cause of your pain. During your visit, your doctor will talk to you about your symptoms. If we need additional information to confirm a diagnosis, a pelvic exam or ultrasound might be needed. These tests will help pinpoint the exact cause of your pain so your doctor can recommend the best treatment options for you.
What Can You Do At Home To Help Period Cramps
The good news is that, even though cramps are painful, there are a handful of things you can do to feel better. For instance, you can fight cramps with over-the-counter pain relievers, called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and acetaminophen. NSAIDs work as anti-inflammatory agents and block the enzyme that makes prostaglandins , resulting in lower levels of prostaglandins, says Alyssa Dweck, MS, MD, FACOG, a practicing gynecologist that specializes in female sexual and reproductive health. Less prostaglandin means less muscular contraction and less pain. Though all of these experts recommended using themconsult your doctor before taking medications.
Additionally, applying a heating pad to your abdomen or lower back can help alleviate pain. This is because heat encourages blood vessels to expand, which in turn increases blood flow and relaxes muscles, Dr. Roskin adds. Just remember to put your heating pad on a timer or take it off your body before you fall asleep. Prolonged use of heating pads can potentially cause burns and other safety risks. Dr. Ritch adds that a warm bath can reduce pain as well.
Another tactic for reducing cramps at night is sleeping on your side in the fetal position, sometimes with a small pillow between the knees, Dr. Ritch says. This position can help take pressure off the muscles and joints surrounding the uterus, and it’s especially helpful if cramping radiates to the back or down the legs, she adds.
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What Helps With Cramps
Here are a some things that can help ease cramps:
Over-the-counter pain medicine like ibuprofen , naproxen , or acetaminophen . Always follow the instructions on the bottle. Talk with your doctor before taking pain medication if you have an allergy to aspirin or severe asthma.
Hormonal birth control .
Acupuncture and acupressure.
Transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation therapy that uses mild electric currents to stimulate your nerves to relieve pain.
Certain vitamins and herbs like vitamin B1, fish oil, fenugreek, ginger, valerian, zataria, and zinc sulfate.
Cramps are a pretty normal part of getting your period, but sometimes people have period cramps that are so painful its hard to do everyday things . If your period pain is really bad, and over-the-counter medicine doesnt help, talk with your doctor. They can help with other ways to manage the pain, or they may want to check to see if theres something more serious going on.
Cramps that are really bad may be a sign of:
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease an infection in your reproductive organs.
Endometriosis a condition where the lining of your uterus grows outside of your uterus.
Adenomyosis when the tissue that lines your uterus grows into the muscle wall of your uterus.
Uterine fibroids non-cancerous tumors that grow inside your uterus, in the walls of your uterus, or on the outside of your uterus.
How Are Severe Menstrual Cramps Treated
When the usual home remedies to relieve period cramps are no match for your cramps, an OB-GYN can help you find relief from the pain. The most common treatments for severe menstrual cramps are:
- Hormonal birth control methods If your menstrual cramps are caused by a hormone imbalance, your doctor might recommend using a hormonal birth control. In addition to preventing pregnancy, taking hormonal birth control can help correct the levels of estrogen and progesterone in your body, which effects the thickness of the uterine lining. Thinning the uterine lining can reduce prostaglandin and bring pain relief. Some birth control methods can cause women to skip their periods, eliminating cramps altogether.
- Prescription medication When over-the-counter medicines dont work, your doctor might prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs . These medicines are much stronger than similar ones youll find over-the-counter. They can significantly reduce prostaglandins in your uterus, which might thin the uterine lining and alleviate cramps. Prescription medication is used when a woman experiences severe, chronic cramps.
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Q: Even With Pain Relievers I Get Bad Cramps With My Period What Else Can I Do
Q: Even with pain relievers, I get bad cramps with my period. What else can I do?
Blame menstrual cramps on the production by the uterus of hormonelike chemicals known as prostaglandins. Some women make more prostaglandins or are more sensitive to them than others, so they may have stronger and more frequent cramps during the first day or two of menstruation, or they may find that the usual painkillers don’t bring relief.
If OTC drugs don’t work for you, your doctor may prescribe stronger versions of NSAIDs like ibuprofen or naproxen . All meds work best if you take them at the first sign of symptoms and for the first day or two of your period. Birth control pills also help reduce menstrual cramps and heavy bleeding.
For natural remedies, try applying a heating pad or portable heat pack/wrap. Heat helps muscles relax it acts as an analgesic in ways we don’t fully understand and also increases blood flow to tissues, which is thought to help dilute prostaglandins. Don’t skip exercise this increases blood flow and can relieve muscle tension that contributes to cramps. Also, check your calcium intake. In a large controlled study of women with PMS, those who took 1,200 mg of calcium got significant relief from their symptoms, including painful cramps.
How To Stop Period Cramps
Dealing with cramps every month can be as frustrating as it is painful. Luckily, there are a many remedies that might help you relieve period cramps. Its important to remember that these techniques wont always work, especially for chronic conditions, but they can offer relief for mild to moderate period pain.
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Heres Why Aleve Has An Advantage Over Tylenol For Muscle Pain
Jordan Reeder, an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner, explained what different types of over-the-counter pain relievers do in an interview with UnityPoint Health. Acetaminophen is a pain reliever and fever reducer, Reeder said. Tylenol is the brand usually associated with over-the-counter acetaminophen. Then she explained that Aleve is an anti-inflammatory drug that helps reduce swelling and inflammation, giving it an edge for muscle aches and pain. However, Reeder also noted that long-term use of pain relievers could cause kidney and liver problems.
Aleve is also an even better choice of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug than others likeAdvil for people who have a risk of heart disease . According to WebMD, take Aleve with an antacid, or food or milk, to help prevent stomach irritation. You shouldnt lie down for at least 10 minutes after you take it. For any pain reliever, if youre taking it as needed, its best to take it at the first sign of pain. Of note, children under 6 months old shouldnt take Aleve. If you have any questions about which OTC pain reliever is right for you, talk with your doctor.
Treating Period Pain Caused By Fibroids Or Adenomyosis
If youre constantly relying on ibuprofen for period cramps caused by fibroids or adenomyosis, we want you to know there are other, effective and safe options to choose from.
Uterine fibroid embolization is a minimally invasive, outpatient treatment that can treat fibroid pain. During UFE, the fibroids blood supply is cut off causing it to shrink. Over time, the body naturally absorbs the fibroid and painful symptoms should subside. UFE gives women the freedom to stop using ibuprofen for heavy periods and other fibroid symptoms. With UFE, women can avoid the long-term effects of ibuprofen and live life free of painful symptoms.
If youre someone who regularly relies on ibuprofen for menstrual cramps or heavy bleeding caused by fibroids, give us a call at 855.455.5262 so we can give you the information you need about UFE as well as help find a treatment center near you.
The Fibroid Fighters Foundation is here to help answer any questions you may have about both surgical and non-surgical treatment options. Dont keep relying on ibuprofen for period cramps or other fibroid symptoms, take action today.
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Do You Need To See A Doctor
If your menstrual cramps are unusual or severe, or if they last more than a few days, you may want to see your doctor. Painful period cramping is treatable, so anytime you’re worried about your symptoms, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor.
Your doctor may perform a pelvic exam to make sure everything is normal. They may also ask you questions about your menstrual period history, suggest lifestyle modifications, or even recommend and prescribe medicines that may help relieve your painful periods.