Essential advice for soothing period cramps

If you need help with period cramps, you're not alone. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to help soothe the pain.
Menstruation affects every woman differently. Some experience nagging discomfort while other women are doubled over in pain. Period pain is typically concentrated around the abdomen or lower back area. Cramps are a result of the uterus contracting as the body releases blood. Period cramps can start a day or two before your period and continue for a few days once bleeding has begun.

While uncomfortable, period cramps should not be debilitating to the point where you cannot function. Such physical pain should be addressed with your physician. Most women are able to find comfort using one or more of these methods.

Essential advice for soothing period cramps

Apply heat

The gentle heat of a heating pad or hot water bottle can soothe the ache of menstrual cramps, especially before bedtime. You may also find relief by taking a warm bath.

Herbs and supplements

Some women have found that certain vitamins and herbal supplements have positive effects during their period. Vitamins such as omega-3 and vitamin E may provide relief, while the herb evening primrose is known to ease premenstrual symptoms. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist to see which vitamin or herbal supplement might be right for you.

Regular exercise

From basic walking and yoga to running and other intense workouts, many women find relief by getting the body moving. Try to break a sweat. The endorphins caused by exercise will not only lift your mood, they can minimize the effects of period cramps.

Sleep and eat well

Menstruation can take a toll on the body, especially when you’re dealing with pain symptoms, so plan to get lots of rest around the time of your period. Steer clear of fried foods, added salt, alcohol and caffeine, as these can exacerbate your cramps. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Take note if certain foods affect your symptoms. Drink lots of water or herbal teas. Eating extra fiber during your period can also help flush estrogen from the body during menstruation.

Medications

To minimize pain before it begins, start taking a pain reliever a day or two before you anticipate pain. Continue taking around the clock as per bottle instructions during the first couple of days of your period.

Distraction

It may not be easy, but try not to focus on the pain by distracting yourself with something pleasurable. Call a friend. Watch a movie. Surf the internet.

What works for some women may not work for others. Experiment with these tips until you find what works best for you.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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