According to sharecare.com, more than 40% of menstruating women report period cramps every month. While menstrual pain aka dysmenorrhea is not typically a sign of danger, it can still impact the quality of your life.
To help with the cramps, here are 10 natural yet effective solutions. Make sure to talk to your doctor if your condition is worsening despite using some of these treatments.
1. Eat Healthy
You are what you eat. Studies suggest that specialized anti-inflammatory diet can reduce period cramps. The addition of right oils like olive oil, almond oil or extra-virgin coconut oil will maintain hormonal balance and also control prostaglandins.
Magnesium is also considered to be a great nutrient that can help in reducing muscular pain. Some of the magnesium-rich foods include nuts, green vegetables, legumes, and berries.
In addition to that, try including a variety of seeds to your starters. Salmon, Codfish or mackerel are great options to increase omega-3 intake.
Adding more and more green leafy vegetables such as lettuce or spinach to your diet can also help in alleviating period cramps.
2. Use Tea
According to netdoctor.co.uk, chamomile and peppermint tea can help to calm and reduce menstrual cramps. Similarly, cram bark tea is also believed to relieve symptoms associated with period cramps. It’s recommended that you take advice from your doctor before including these remedies, especially if you’re already using Aspirin or any other blood-thinning medicine.
3. Take Fish Oil and Vitamin B1
Another proven way to treat period pain is to incorporate fish oil supplements and vitamin B1 to your routine. You can also take painkillers like Anvil or ibuprofen that can calm the pain, curtail inflammation and also reduces headache and lower back pain.
4. Menstrual Cups Can Reduce Cramps
Did you know menstrual cups can alleviate period pain better than tampons or any other feminine hygiene product? According to Daisy Menstrual Cup, there are absolutely no chemicals involved with 100% silicone-crafted menstrual cups. Tampons, in comparison, involve pesky chemicals and fibers that can cause bacteria and toxins inside your body that can trigger menstrual pain. Thus, it is better to choose menstrual cups as your ultimate period alley.
The impact of acupuncture on the nervous system is mind-boggling. It improves blood flow and also helps in reducing chronic inflammation. This alternative medicine form is used to control nausea during chemotherapy and also believed to alleviate pain during menstruation.
6. Use Heating Pad
Heat therapy can effectively reduce menstrual cramps. It can either be in the form of a warm water bath or hot water bottle. In addition to that, you can also snuggle a heating pad for muscle relaxation. You can also use heat wrap if the heating pad is not available.
7. Low-Impact Workout
It may sound strange at first to do exercise during period especially when you’re badly suffering from pain. However, physical activity can release endorphins that can reduce pain and uplift your mood. Try to do low-impact exercises like a brisk walk or swimming to get rid of painful period cramps.
Doing massage with aromatic essential oils can help alleviate period pain. One of the researches published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology suggested that women who massaged their body with essential oils during menstruation reported less cramps than women who opted for synthetic, perfumed creams or ointments. You can use any oil of your choice including lavender, geranium, clary sage or cypress as they all contain soothing effect and can also help in reducing cramps.
9. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking more water (including juices) can prevent water retention in your body which is believed to be the biggest reason behind bloating or puffiness. Ideally, you should drink 8-10 glasses of warm water as it can improve blood flow and may calm inflamed muscles. Besides drinking plain water, you can also consume water-based fruits or veggies like oranges, melons, celery, etc.
10. Include Anti-Inflammatory Herbs to Your Diet
There are many herbal remedies that may help with alleviating muscular pain and cramps during the period – cinnamon, fennel, peppermint oil, and other anti-spasmodic herbs are just to name a few. You can also make ginger tea infused with some of these herbs to have effective results. Make sure to seek expert advice before incorporating any herb to your diet.
Menstrual cramps can be disturbing. It can negatively impact the quality of your life. Especially if you’re a working woman, it gets extremely annoying to carry forward with a cramped or painful period. Take a hint from this post and have a pain-free and comfortable period with few diet and lifestyle changes.
Even though all the aforementioned treatments are natural and don’t include any side effects, it’s advisable that you consult your gynecologist before making any amendment to your routine!