Going through life in a woman’s body can be a challenge for a number of reasons. This is especially true when that dreaded time of the month rolls around. Not only can menstruation be extremely inconvenient and frustrating, it can also be very painful.
Every female body experiences their period a little bit differently. The unpleasant menstrual bleeding can last anywhere from about 2-8 days. For some women, it’s relatively painless. However, many of us are not so lucky. Some women can experience so much pain that it even keeps them from leaving their bed for hours at a time.
If you experience bad pain during your period, there are some things that you can do to help. Keep on reading to gain some knowledge on how to get rid of pain during periods.
1. Stay hydrated.
Because you are experiencing significant blood loss during this time, it’s important to keep your body well hydrated.
Be sure to get ahead of the game on this. When you know that your period is on its way, drink plenty of water, and eat healthy foods high in fluid like fruits and vegetables.
It is recommended that the average adult drinks about 2 litres of water per day. Keep water with you at all times, and try to drink this amount at the very least. If you don’t feel like drinking too much water, you can substitute in clear liquids like apple juice or herbal tea.
2. Treat with heat.
Your menstruating body will appreciate the pain relief that a heat treatment can provide. Most people like to use a hot water bottle, however, you can also use a heating pad if you’d prefer.
Once your heated item is ready (make sure it’s not too hot!), place it on your lower abdomen. Leave it there for 10-30 minutes, or until you stop feeling pain.
Taking a hot bath is also a great pain reliever. Try adding Epsom salts (about 1 cup), as they have a relaxing effect on muscles.
3. Exercise regularly.
Many people are unaware that working out on a regular basis can reduce pain when your period comes around. Try working out for 30-60 minutes per day 3-5 days a week. You will be amazed at how much better you will feel during your menstrual cycle.
When you are actually on your period, it’s still okay to exercise (no matter how much you don’t feel like it!). However, there are a few things to take note of. During this time, it’s even more crucial for you to stay hydrated during your workout. Remember to keep water with you, and drink plenty of it.
Also, you may not feel like pushing yourself as much as you normally would. Remember that this is okay. Stick to the smaller weights, and don’t push yourself too hard on the treadmill.
4. Talk to your doctor about birth control options.
Although most women tend to get birth control in order to prevent an unplanned pregnancy, some choose do so for the benefits that it can have for period regularity and/or period pain.
There are many birth control options out there including pills, injectable contraception, and IUD’s. These birth control methods may be worth taking a look into.
Talk to your doctor about the pros and cons of the various birth control methods, and decide together if it’s a good choice for you.
5. Wear the right clothes.
Wearing overly tight or restricting clothes around your lower abdomen area can add to your period pain. Try to avoid tight jeans, or anything that clings too close to the body. Trade in your jeans in for some loose-fitting skirts or pants.
If you’re feeling especially stylish, try bringing back some loose-fitting 70s gear. Parachute pants and flower-print dresses will never have felt so good. If you pull off the look well enough, you might even bring it back into style.
6. Get enough rest/relaxation.
Getting enough sleep is always important. However, it is even more crucial when on your period. Try to get 7-10 hours of sleep per night on a regular basis.
While menstruating, try to stay as relaxed as possible. When you feel uncomfortable, find a place to lay down. Over-exertion can worsen pain. A good way to combine exercise with relaxation is yoga. This is becoming a much more common trend all over North America, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find a studio to sit in on a class for.
Also, try your best to avoid stressful situations during this time, and attempt to keep your mind at ease.
7. Avoid caffeine.
Caffeine can worsen menstrual cramping. Unfortunately, it’s present in a lot of our favorite foods and drinks. It’s in most chocolates, teas, sodas, and coffees. When on your period, try to avoid consuming such items in order to evade any unnecessary pain.
8. Up your calcium intake.
As many of us have heard, Calcium is known for reducing pain caused by muscle cramping. Try to eat plenty of calcium while experiencing period pain.
Foods high in calcium include milk, cheese, yogurt, oranges, and almonds. Try to take in at least 3 servings of high-calcium foods per day.
9. Add cinnamon to your food.
Cinnamon is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. These properties are great for reliving menstrual pain. Unless you had planned on doing the cinnamon challenge anyways, you probably don’t want to eat it on its own. However, it can be easily added to foods like oatmeal or yogurt.
You can also create your own cinnamon tea by adding the spice to some warm water. Simply add ¼ – ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon to a cup of boiling water, and mix together well.
As you know, period pain is no fun at all. Most women are desperate to find a pain relieving solution. Try out some of these tactics the next time you period rolls around, and see what works best for you! Every bodily function is different, so if one method doesn’t quite work out, simply try something else. Don’t give up on finding a great way to relieve your pain. Good luck to you!