Menstrual pain is often considered to be one of the worst ailments a woman experiences throughout her lifetime. Although many people turn to pain medicines, like ibuprofen, there are some period pain remedies that may help you manage the pain at home naturally and simply.
Applying a heated pad, a hot water bottle, or sleeping with a heated blanket can be a great way to relieve some period pain, particularly from cramps. Even something as simple as a strong peppermint lotion can help relieve some pain when applied to the lower stomach. Drinking a hot herbal tea (it’s best to avoid caffeinated beverages) will also benefit the stomach as it creates a direct way for heat to reach the lower stomach and warm the cells in this area. This can help sooth cramps. Some herbal teas will also help with bloating, which creates a general feeling of lousiness, and which may also contribute to period pain.
Taking a warm bath applies the theory that heat helps soothe cramps while allowing one to be submerged in water. The warmth of the bath can help with back pain, joint pain, and muscle pain as well. Simply soaking in the tub for as little as 45 minutes can help soothe the contractions of the uterus and even provide a sleep aid.
Rubbing the lower stomach, particularly in the area of the uterus, can help relieve pain from not only cramps, but gas and bloating. Rubbing the lower stomach helps to break up gas bubbles that are otherwise blocking the stomach and causing pains that can feel similar to cramps. Many paediatricians will recommend that mothers rub their child’s stomach when they get a stomach ache, which feeds into the hypothesis that rubbing the stomach even as an adult will trigger that psychological remembrance of comfort.
Chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, is known to release the same chemicals in a woman’s brain that are released during sex, feelings of romantic love, and outdoor activity. This powerful chemical is called serotonin. Serotonin plays a great part in feelings of happiness, comfort, and contentment, as well as a boost to the immune system. A small amount of dark chocolate will not only satisfy cravings that occur during the menstrual cycle, but will also release serotonin, triggering the body’s response to pain management and helping soothe cramps and aches.
Although many women feel as though exercise is not on the agenda during their period, exercising is one of the most advantageous things to do during the menstrual cycle. Exercise generates endorphins and serotonin, adding to the immune system’s response to pain as well as improving one’s mood. The release of these chemicals will also help stretch muscles that tense up during the period, and will help to distract from the pain. Specific exercises like running and sit-ups are often considered to be most ideal in this situation, although an activity like dancing or swimming will be very beneficial as well.
An interesting thought: While it may not be the case for all women, there are many instances in which users of menstrual cups have reported a decrease or lessening in the severity of their period pains and cramping while using a cup