With nearly 80% of women suffering from menstrual cramps, it’s no surprise that they are always in hunt for ways to tackle this common monthly discomfort. From heating pads and exercise to medications and other natural methods, women will try just about anything to relieve the pain brought on by their monthly friend. Here are 9 lesser known tips to get you through that time of the month.
1. Change in Diet
Your diet affects so many aspects of your body’s function and treating menstrual cramps is no different. When it comes to relieving menstrual pain, there are certain foods you should avoid to reduce inflammation and discomfort. Following a low-fat diet rich in vegetables and lean protein versus one that includes fatty, fried foods can help reduce inflammation in all parts of the body, including the ovaries. Be sure to add these anti-inflammatory foods to your grocery list.
- Bell peppers
- Dark leafy greens
On the flipside, it’s important to avoid those foods that are high in sugar and trans-fats. These include, but are not limited to:
- Potato chips
- Fried foods
You’ll soon discover that following a healthier diet will not only reduce menstrual discomfort but will simply make you feel better and more energetic overall.
2. Herbal Tea
What you drink is almost as important as what you eat when it comes to treating menstrual cramps. Hydrating with water is a must but drinking herbal teas offers additional benefits. Although the direct health benefits are unclear, the simple act of sitting with a hot cup of tea is extremely soothing and relaxing, which can have an overall calming effect on the body. But several types of herbal tea might relieve cramps specifically. Consult with your doctor before having any of these teas.
Boron is a chemical found in water, rocks, and soil but has many healing properties. Aside from helping the body absorb essential vitamins and nutrients, as well as improving brain function and helping prevent cancer, this natural chemical may also offer menstrual cramp relief. Boron not only reduces the intensity of cramps but also the duration. Boron is found in several foods, including:
- Peanut butter
This alternative therapy is used to relieve a wide range of conditions including back and neck pain, anxiety, infertility, and insomnia. Acupressure involves applying pressure to certain parts of the body to help ease discomfort and treat internal issues. It helps reduce the severity of menstrual cramps. It can help reduce inflammation and cause increased blood flow to the body’s organs.
5. Essential Oils
Whether you smell them, drink them, or massage with them, essential oils offer so many amazing benefits from relaxation and calming effects to treating certain physical conditions, including menstrual cramps. Massaging with essential oils is the recommended method for alleviating your pain. By massaging certain oils on your abdomen, the fragrance mixed with the pressure of the massage can help ease pain and increase blood flow. The most common and effective fragrances are:
It’s not like women need an excuse to have an orgasm but reducing the pain from menstrual cramps is as good a reason as any. When a woman orgasms, not only do her abdominal and uterine muscles contract, causing increased blood flow, but the body also releases endorphins. These endorphins are the same chemical released after exercise (which is also said to help relieve menstrual discomfort). Endorphins create feelings of relaxation and happiness in the body. So whether you’re feeling sexy or not during your period, having an orgasm is a quick ticket to menstrual cramp relief.
7. Consider Birth Control
The most common medications used for menstrual cramp relief are often anti-inflammatory, over the counter medications or acetaminophen which not only reduce pain but also inflammation. But some women opt for a more permanent fix, which may come in the form of birth control. Whether you’re taking a birth control pill or choose a different method, the same benefits apply. Because birth control prevents your body from ovulating, it often reduces the presence of menstrual cramps as well. Many women suffering from endometriosis are placed on birth control to help control their monthly bleeding and discomfort.
8. Reduce Caffeine Intake
You already know that certain foods provide anti-inflammatory benefits due to certain ingredients. Caffeine is one of these ingredients. But why? Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which means that it causes the blood vessels in your body to constrict. Those vessels that feed the uterus may tighten due to caffeine intake; thus, intensifying your pain and bloating. Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, soda, chocolate, and other energy and sports drinks. Be sure to check labels before consuming these beverages during your menstrual cycle.
9. Take a Bubble Bath
Although the opportunity to completely unwind and relax in a hot bubble bath may be few and far between, it’s important to make time for at least one when dealing with menstrual cramps. The warmth of the water can help relieve and relax tightened muscles, including those causing your cramps. Step up your bubble bath game and burn a candle, use essential oils, play soft music or read your favorite book. All of these things will help melt your stress away, which will relax your entire body and help ease discomfort. Try taking a bath right before bed and you’ll be rewarded with a good night’s sleep.
Every woman has a different level of discomfort during their menstrual cycle. But with these easy techniques, everyone can find something that works for them.
Article Submitted By Community Writer