Most women struggle with menstrual cramps every now and again. The cramps feel like a throbbing pain in your lower belly and can last multiple days.
These cramps can get in the way of our work, sport and other daily activities. They can seem unbearable and often leave us feeling like we don’t want to get out of bed.
If you are one of the unlucky women who have to deal with severe period cramps, there are a few things that you can do to reduce the terrible pain.
Tips To Relieve Menstrual Cramps
Here are some of the best ways to reduce and relieve pain and cramps.
If your cramps are really intense, maybe give this one a miss as exercise will be more helpful during your lighter menstrual days. However, if you feel up to it, try doing very light exercise that keeps your heart rate down, including walking and yoga.
If your cramps aren’t too bad, try moderate-intensity aerobic exercises, such as easy jogging or swimming. These exercises reduce bloating and cramping pain. Exercise also helps with blood circulation and causes the release of endorphins, which might help with PMS.
Take A Hot Bath
Applying heat to your body is a great way to help with menstrual cramps.
Run yourself a hot bath and soak in it for as long as you need to. The heat will relax your muscles and ease any tension that you may feel. Taking a bath may be as effective as over-the-counter pain medications and it is also a lot cheaper.
When you have your period, your body is working more than it usually does. As a result, you should get more rest than you typically do.
When your cramps are very bad, take a nap. In fact, whenever you feel drained, give yourself an hour or so to just lay in bed and recuperate. It would help if you also went to bed a little bit earlier at night so that you feel revived and ready to go the next day.
Another way that you could try to relax your muscles is by having a massage or spending the day at a spa.
Over-the-counter Pain Medication
There are a few over-the-counter pain medications that you can take for period cramps. These include Ibuprofen and Naproxen Sodium. Certain anti-inflammatory medications can also be used.
You should always track your period so that you know when it will start. Taking a pain pill one day before your period begins can help ease the cramps that are usually worse on the first couple of days of your period. Do not take more than two tablets per day.
It is recommended that you turn to over-the-counter medication as a last resort to your cramping pains. You should also always make sure that you ask your doctor about any pills that you are planning to take.
Use A Heating Pad
As previously mentioned, heat can drastically reduce pain from cramps.
If you have a heating pad or hot water bottle lying around, warm it up and place it on your lower back or lower stomach. After a few minutes, your cramps should ease slightly and leave you in less pain.
Vitamins And Herbs
Certain herbs can help ease the pain felt by menstruation cramps. Some of these herbs include vitex agnus castus, viburnum opulus, fennel and turmeric.
Vitamins also can be used to reduce your pain. Vitamins that have shown to have a positive effect on menstrual cramps include Omega-3 fatty acids, calcium citrate, vitamin D, vitamin E and magnesium.
Improving your diet could also make your cramps less severe. It is recommended that you drink at least six to eight glasses of water every day. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and tobacco. Eat foods that are high in antioxidants, such as fruits and vegetables. You should also eat foods that are rich in calcium, including beans, nuts and leafy vegetables.
There are a few things that you can do to ease the pain caused by menstrual cramps. Take a hot bath or apply a heat pack to your lower back or stomach. On the days when your period is lighter, do some light exercise. You could also take certain vitamins, such as magnesium and vitamin D.