How to Get Rid of Period Cramps 

Many people experience cramps before and during their menstrual period. While some may only have mild cramps, others may not be so fortunate and may endure severe pain that significantly disrupts their daily routine. Moreover, in this post, you will get more enlightenment on the topic of How to Get Rid of Period Cramps with more important tips.

How to Get Rid of Period Cramps 
How to Get Rid of Period Cramps

If menstrual cramps consistently interfere with your well-being, there are practical steps you can take to regain control. Here, we present 14 proven home remedies that can alleviate your discomfort  on and assist you in returning to your busy life with greater ease.

What Causes Period Cramps?

Period cramps result from contractions in the uterus, brought about by changes in your body’s hormone levels, specifically prostaglandins. During menstruation, the uterus contracts to shed its lining, releasing blood through the vagina.

Certain individuals are more prone to experiencing period pain, especially those who:

  • Are under 30 years old.
  • Experience heavy menstrual bleeding.
  • Have irregular periods.
  • Have a family history of period pain.
  • Smoke.
  • Entered puberty early (at age 11 or earlier).

Keep reading to find out how to effectively get rid of period cramps and relieve yourself.

How to Get Rid of Period Cramps 

Period cramps can be quite uncomfortable and frustrating. Here we have gathered 14 ways in which can help you get rid of your period cramps and relieve yourself of the discomfort:

  1. Use a Heat Patch

Applying a heated patch or wrap on your abdomen can relax the muscles in your uterus, the main culprit behind period cramps. Heat also enhances circulation in your abdomen, potentially reducing pain.

Research suggests that heating pads might be more effective than acetaminophen (Tylenol) in relieving period cramps.

You can easily purchase abdominal heat patches online or at a drugstore. They are user-friendly – just peel and stick them onto your abdomen. Electric heating pads and hot water bottles are also effective, especially if you’re at home and not moving around much.

  1. Massage Your Tummy With Essential Oils

Certain essential oils, such as lavender, sage, rose, marjoram, cinnamon, and clove, may help alleviate period cramps when massaged onto the abdomen.

It’s recommended to mix these oils with a carrier oil, like coconut or jojoba oil, to ensure safe application and coverage. Before using, perform a patch test to check for allergies. Once the oil mixture is ready, gently massage a few drops onto your abdomen in a circular motion.

  1. Take a Pain Reliever

Over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers are effective for period cramps and related pain, like headaches.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve), and aspirin (Bufferin), are recommended by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. NSAIDs not only relieve pain but also reduce the production and effects of prostaglandins.

Among OTC NSAIDs, ibuprofen is considered the most effective, according to a 2020 meta-analysis. These medications work best when taken at the first sign of cramps or pain.

Follow the recommended dosage and consult your doctor if you have a history of certain health conditions before using these medications.

  1. Exercise

Engaging in low-to-medium intensity aerobic exercise can help alleviate the pain associated with period cramps, as per a 2018 study. Women who performed 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three days a week for eight weeks experienced significant reductions in period cramps.

Incorporating aerobic activities into your routine can be as simple as biking to work, taking a brisk walk during lunch, dancing to music, or participating in a sport you enjoy.

  1. Soak in a Tub

Taking a hot bath is an effective way to provide warmth to your abdominal, pelvic, and back muscles, promoting relaxation. Enhance the pain-relieving effect by adding a few drops of essential oils, such as lavender, sage, or rose, mixed with a carrier oil to your bathwater.

Epsom salt can also contribute to relieving muscle pain. Aim to spend at least 15 minutes in a hot bath to maximize its benefits.

  1. Do Yoga

Yoga, like aerobic exercise, is beneficial in reducing period cramps, according to a study. Women who participated in a 60-minute yoga class once a week for 12 weeks reported significant reductions in period pain.

If you’re interested in trying yoga, look for a class that combines both a physical component and a relaxation component, as research suggests this combination is most effective in reducing pain from period cramps.

  1. Take Supplements

Several studies suggest that certain dietary supplements may help alleviate period cramps, although the exact mechanisms are not fully understood. A 2017 review found magnesium to be more effective than placebos in relieving cramps.

Another 2020 review highlighted the positive effects of cinnamon, fennel, and ginger in reducing period pain and shortening its duration. Other supplements associated with reduced period cramps include calcium, vitamins B6, B1, E, and D, vitamin B12, and fish oil.

Follow recommended dosages and consult your doctor if you are taking other medications.

  1. Avoid Caffeine and Salty Foods

Dietary choices can impact period pain. Go for foods that reduce inflammation, such as berries, fatty fish, avocado, and extra virgin olive oil. Conversely, limit foods that may cause water retention, bloating, and discomfort, such as salty foods, caffeine, alcohol, and fatty foods.

Following a Mediterranean diet and reducing alcohol intake has been linked to shorter, lighter periods and reduced menstrual pain, according to a 2020 study.

  1. Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can intensify abdominal cramps, so aim to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day. Increase your intake if it’s hot, you’ve been exercising, or if you feel thirsty.

  1. Try Acupressure

Acupressure, a noninvasive approach, has shown promise in reducing various types of pain, including period pain. Research indicates that applying firm pressure to specific body parts can decrease the severity and duration of period pain.

One technique involves rubbing circles on your calf, above your ankle. Measure four fingertips up from your inner ankle bone and firmly rub the area for several minutes. Repeat daily as needed before and during your period.

  1. Consider Birth Control

If home remedies aren’t providing sufficient relief, it’s worth discussing birth control options with a healthcare professional to manage period pain.

Birth control pills are commonly prescribed for painful periods, and other hormonal methods, like intrauterine devices (IUDs), Depo-Provera shot, vaginal ring, patch, and implant, may also be effective.

Additionally, birth control can address other period-related issues such as PMS and mood stability.

  1. Try a TENS Machine

Using a TENS machine, which stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, can be beneficial in relieving period pain. Portable TENS units are available for home use, and they’re user-friendly.

Simply attach the sticky electrode patches to your skin over the lower abdomen or back where you feel pain and choose the intensity setting that feels comfortable.

Studies have shown that TENS users experience reduced period pain, improved quality of life, and decreased reliance on pain medication.

  1. Consider CBD

While there isn’t specific research on CBD for period pain, some individuals find it helpful for menstrual cramps due to its potential anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.

A 2019 survey of women with endometriosis reported CBD oil and cannabis as effective remedies for pain relief compared to other methods like yoga and stretching.

  1. Switch up Your Sleeping Position

Anecdotal evidence suggests that adopting the fetal position might be the best sleeping position for menstrual cramps. This position may alleviate pressure on the abdomen and lower back, common areas for period pain.

While there isn’t extensive research on how sleeping positions affect period pain, some find relief with this sleeping posture.

When Should You See a Doctor?

While period cramps are a common experience, experiencing severe pain is not typical. If you:

  • Find that your period cramps are so intense that they disrupt your daily activities.
  • Develop severe menstrual cramps at or after the age of 25.

It’s crucial to schedule an appointment with a doctor. Extreme pain before or during your period could be indicative of a more serious health condition that requires treatment, such as:

  • Endometriosis.
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
  • Sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
  • Uterine fibroids.
  • Adenomyosis.
  • Cervical stenosis.

Seeking medical attention is important to address and manage any underlying health issues causing the severe pain.

Bottom line 

Period cramps are a common occurrence, but sometimes they can disrupt your daily routine. The good news is that there are ways to alleviate the discomfort caused by these cramps.

However, if the pain persists for more than a couple of days or becomes so severe that it hinders your ability to carry out daily activities, it’s important to consult with your doctor for further evaluation and guidance.

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