Most women experience period cramps during the initial days of menstruation. Menstrual pain is referred to as dysmenorrhea. Period pain does not necessarily mean period cramps; it also involves headache, backache, and other several discomforts. Period cramps occur due to uterus contraction, which sheds uterus lining. This causes cramps, pain in the groin, upper thighs, lower back, and abdomen. As such, period cramps do not inhibit serious health conditions. However, period cramps can sometimes cause severe pain and discomfort, leading to weakness and heavy blood loss. Though slight pain is normal during menstruation, recurring period cramps can signify some underlying health condition. But tips to get regular periods to ensure healthy periods can save women from period cramps and other menstrual problems. If this is the situation, one must take necessary measures to avoid period cramps and seek a doctor’s advice.
Table of Contents
- The Possible Reasons Behind Period Cramps
- Home Remedies for Period Cramps
- FAQs About Menstrual Cramps or Periods Pain
The Possible Reasons Behind Period Cramps
It stands for premenstrual syndrome. PMS nearly affects 90 percent of women who menstruate. PMS begins a few days before the period occurs and continues till the first or second day of menstruation. Doctors suggest that the dipping levels of estrogen and progesterone before starting each period cause PMS and period cramps in most women. Period cramps, irritation, mood swings, etc., are possible symptoms of PMS. Other medications along with Himalayan shilajit resin can help to keep PMS at bay.
PMDD stands for Premenstrual dysphoric disorder. It is a severe version of PMS and affects 5% of menstruating women. The causes of PMDD are unknown to doctors, but women who face chronic depression, stress, or a family history of depression are more prone to PMDD. Period cramps and pain are among the symptoms of PMDD.
Fibroids are another major cause of period cramps. Uterine fibroids form benign growths that may even develop on the uterine lining. They can be either very small, not visible to the naked eye, or very big that they may even alter the shape of the uterus. They usually grow during the childbearing years of a woman and cause period cramps; however, in many cases shrink or go away completely on their own after menopause.
An ovarian cyst is a harmless sac filled with fluid that occurs in or on the body. Ovarian cysts grow in ovaries, typically during the period of ovulation in mature ladies. Many women develop a minimum of one small cyst every month that fades away naturally. However, some women get large or multiple ovarian cysts which cause period cramps and other complications. In such cases, medical treatment is necessary to manage the period cramps and ovarian cysts. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can be a cause of ovarian cysts. PCOS is a condition where hormone imbalances may cause many small but harmless cysts to develop in the ovaries. This can cause period cramps, and to the most, difficulties in getting pregnant, problems of insulin resistance, and other health concerns. Facial hair, weight gain, period cramps or painful periods, and acne are some of PCOS symptoms.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
An infection caused in the uterus or ovaries gives rise to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). The infection occurs when a bacteria from a sexually transmitted infection (STI) reaches the reproductive organs. PID can also develop after surgery. While most women do not experience any symptoms of PID, period cramps are an unusual symptom for some.
The uterine lining also called the endometrium, develops inside the uterus. But the endometrium develops outside the uterus and other parts of the reproductive organs such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries of the person who has endometriosis. When the body tries to shed uterine lining and tissue during periods, the endometrium that grows outside the uterus stays there. This can even trap it in the body and cause period cramps, heavy blood loss, inflammation, and irritation.
Adenomyosis is a condition where the endometrium develops on the walls of the muscles of the uterus. The endometrium can harm the uterus muscle, but it generally affects only one spot. Adenomyosis is also a benign condition, but it can cause painful period cramps. Doctors do not know the exact causes of adenomyosis, but women who have given birth went through uterine surgery are prone to this problem.
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Home Remedies for Period Cramps
Many women look for the answer of how to get rid of period cramps fast or instant pain relief. While it seems arduous to find a doctor while experiencing bad period cramps, it is most feasible to keep some home remedies handy for period cramp relief. Here are some effective home remedies for period cramps relief-
Using heat patches or wrapping them around the abdomen can help relax the uterus muscles. These muscles are mainly responsible for causing period cramps. Heat boosts blood circulation in the abdomen, which provides instant period pain relief. According to 2004 research, wrapping a heat patch for period cramps relief is even more effective than depending on an over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever. Besides being effective for easing period cramps and pain, the research participants also experienced less fatigue and mood swings.
Abdominal heat patches for period cramps are now easily available at local drugstores and online shops. They are easy to use and offer instant period pain relief just after a few minutes of sticking. Hot water bottles and electric heating pads are not as convenient to use as these heat patches.
Consume Over-the-counter (OTC) Pills
According to experts, OTC pain relievers like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), meftal spas, and aspirin are effective treatments for period cramps. These medications work the best when women take them right after experiencing slight period cramps or pain. You can find ibuprofen, meftal spas, or aspirin, at any medicine store easily. However, take these medicines for period cramp relief only as per the doctor’s guidance and talk to the doctor regarding the history of heart, kidney, or liver problems history, along with ulcers, asthma, or bleeding disorders, if you have any.
Try Massaging The Abdomen With Essential Oils
Experts suggest that a few essential oils can ease period cramps when women massage them on the abdomen, mainly with blended oils. Oils that may prove the most effective in reducing period cramps with their ability to boost blood circulation are- Lavender, rose, sage, clove, cinnamon, etc. A good health store or online shopping sites can help you get these.
Before massaging the abdomen for period cramp relief with essential oils, consider mixing them with some carrier oil, like or jojoba oil or coconut oil. Carrier oils safely become a carrier so that the skin is able to absorb essential oil properly and provide instant period pain relief. Once the oil blend is ready to use, take a few drops, rub them between your hands, and then give the abdomen a gentle massage to experience instant period cramp relief. Experts suggest massaging in circular motions only for five minutes a day during and even before the periods may help reduce period cramps and stimulate blood circulation in the abdomen.
Do Regular Exercise
According to recent research, a low or moderate-intensity aerobic exercise can help ease pain and discomfort caused by period cramps. Experts also found that women who did a minimum of 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three days per week experienced significant falls in period cramps. Add an aerobic workout and some exercises for lower back pain into the daily schedule to get rid of period cramps and consider cycling, brisk walking, dancing, or playing the favorite sport.
Experts suggest that, like aerobic exercise, yoga is also helpful in reducing period cramps. In this research, experts noted that women who participated in an hour-long yoga class for a week experienced significant reductions in period cramps and pain. Both physical and relaxation components must be present in the yoga session. Studies suggest that this combination is highly effective in reducing pain occurring from period cramps.
Try Dietary Supplements
Vitamin D is a vital nutrient that can help the body absorb calcium efficiently and reduce period cramps followed by inflammation. Other supplements, such as vitamin E, Omega 3, and magnesium, can help lessen inflammation and might even make period cramps less complex. For the best results, try taking supplements regularly and not only during the periods. As some supplements may interact with daily medicines, it is critical to seek doctors’ advice before adding supplements for period cramp relief.
Follow a Healthy Diet
Some foods can offer natural relief from period cramps. Some of these foods are both delicious and nutritious. Anti-inflammatory foods can stimulate blood flow and relax the uterus. Adding berries, pineapples, tomatoes, and spices such as turmeric, garlic, and ginger to the diet can help reduce period cramps. Leafy green vegetables, walnuts, almonds, and fatty fish, such as salmon, can also help relieve period cramps inflammation. Herbal teas have many anti-inflammatory properties and healthy antispasmodic compounds that can relieve period cramps by reducing the muscle spasms in the uterus that cause muscle tension and pain. Drinking chamomile, ashwagandha, ginger, or fennel tea is an easy and natural way to relieve period cramps. Herbal teas also offer other health benefits, such as stress relief and eliminating insomnia.
Keep The Body Well Hydrated
Bloating can cause abdomen discomforts and make period cramps worse. Drinking a lot of water can control bloating during the periods and help alleviate pains that cause period cramps. Drinking warm water also boosts blood flow throughout the body and reduces period cramps by relaxing muscles. It also relieves uterus contractions which is also among the reasons that cause period cramps.
Period cramps are common, but there are times when period cramps can disturb daily life. Fortunately, some steps can ease the period pain and other discomforts caused by these pesky period cramps. If the period pain still does not go away during the initial time of the periods or causes extreme discomfort, then relying on some tried and tested remedies or seeing a doctor is the only solution. These home remedies are effective for temporary and moderate menstrual pain and period cramps. However, if a woman suffers from chronic period cramps, she must see a doctor or a gynecologist and determine the underlying cause of recurring period cramps.
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FAQs About Menstrual Cramps or Periods Pain
Q1. How to stop period cramps at school age?
Ans. For young adolescent girls, following the above-mentioned home remedies are sufficient to eliminate period cramps.
Q.2. Is it bad to drink coffee during periods?
Ans. Yes. Women should try to avoid coffee and other caffeinated drinks as they might interrupt healthy blood circulation and make the period cramps worse.
Q.3 Does drinking water help cramps?
Ans. Yes. Drinking a lot of water can provide relief from period cramps. It can eliminate factors causing bloating and stimulate blood circulation.
Q.4. What tea is good for period cramps?
Ans. Herbal tea such as ginger tea, chamomile tea, or fennel tea can work wonders for relieving period cramps.