Menstrual or period cramps are highly common, however, their severity and intensity varies from person to person. The pain usually starts just before the period and is usually felt in the lower abdomen, thighs, and back. The pain feels like a continuous dull ache that dies down after 2-3 days. (The pain felt in the middle of the cycle is not menstrual cramps)
In a large number of women, menstrual cramps are accompanied by premenstrual symptoms like bloating, mood swings, fatigue, nausea, and swelling of the stomach. Period pains can vary from slight discomfort to serious pain.
If cramps bother you, you can try these remedies that will ease the pain;
First and foremost, start by knowing your cycle. Become your period expert by knowing and studying your cycle. Take note of your energy levels, change in stool, moods, cravings, and sleep patterns. This personal data will help you determine what’s normal for your particular body. If anything changes, you’ll be the first person to know and then seek the right medication and attention.
Heat acts as an effective remedy for cramps. Placing a hot water bottle or a heating pad on your abdomen and lower back helps to relax muscles and offers relief. You can also indulge in a hot bath to help release tension from your body muscles.
Exercising does help offer relief from pain. Try gentle stretching, yoga, or aerobic exercises before your expected period date and in the initial few days of your period.
Opt for loose-fitted garments a few days before and after getting your period. This will help you be more comfortable. Most women also prefer to have back and stomach massages as it helps relieve the pain.
Adopting a couple of lifestyle changes can also help ease pain in the long term. One of them is to avoid smoking as smoking reduces the oxygen supply to the pelvic area causing pain. You can also make diet changes by opting for fresh fruit juices instead of sugary drinks. Eat foods that are rich in fiber with a good amount of vegetables and salads. Cutting down on your salt intake is also recommended.
Lastly, talk to your doctor if you have tried to manage your cramps with medicine and home treatment but you do not feel better. If your cramps are caused by a health problem not related to your period, such as endometriosis, you may need other treatment.