While every woman’s period experience is different from each other, menstrual symptoms can make you feel a throbbing pain in your lower abdomen which can be dull or radiating to your lower back and your thighs. Some experience feeling nausea, headache, dizziness and having loose stools.
Menstrual cramps are typically managed with pharmaceutically available medications, but there are also a wide variety of natural remedies that can help relieve discomfort and severe pain. Here are five home remedies that can help to provide menstrual cramps relief.
Causes Of Menstrual Cramps
Period cramps are typical for most women. But there are times when these cramps are caused by underlying medical conditions such as:
- Endometriosis – a disorder that causes pain due to tissue similar to endometrium grows outside the uterus. It often involves the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and pelvic lining;
- Adenomyosis – This condition happens when the inner lining of the uterus, which is the endometrium, grows into another layer of the muscle called the myometrium. This causes the wall to grow thicker and leads to severe pain and heavy bleeding;
- Fibroids – this is characterized by abnormal tumour growth in a women’s uterus. When these tumours become large, it causes severe cramps and heavy periods;
- Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) – is an infection of the female reproductive system that involves the uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, and cervix, which can cause severe painful cramps.
See Your Doctor When:
While having menstrual cramps during your period is normal, it varies from person to person. Here are some reasons that you need to see and talk to your OB-Gyne about your menstrual cramps.
- The pain that you feel starts to affect your daily life every month;
- If your menstrual cramps last more than three days;
- You’re not experiencing relief after taking any OTC medicines and natural remedies;
- You are experiencing cramps even if you’re not on your period;
- The intensity of your cramps changes over time.
Five Natural Remedies To Help Relieve Menstrual Cramps
Many people often add grated ginger to their tea to help prevent sore throat. But this herb can also ease painful menstrual cramps due to its anti-inflammatory qualities.
In fact, a 2018 study examined university students and found that taking 250 mg of ginger powder four times a day for the first three days of periods helped relieve pain. The study also highlighted that ginger can be just as effective as ibuprofen when it comes to reducing menstrual pain. Plus, if your period is accompanied by nausea and vomiting or stomach upset, ginger can help to address any of these issues.
This natural supplement can also offer many potential health benefits and healing properties, which may be useful for reducing menstrual cramps. Cannabidiol (or CBD) is known as an active compound that can interact with certain receptors of the body’s endocannabinoid system responsible for vital processes such as appetite, sleep, immune response, pain, stress, inflammation, etc.
Whether it is in the form of a CBD vape pen, capsules, tinctures or edibles like CBD oil gummies, intake of CBD oil for pain can help to soothe the discomfort as well as lower anxiety and stress and fight bad quality sleep associated with premenstrual syndrome or period onset. CBD also has anti-nausea and anti-inflammatory properties, making it valuable in managing menstrual cramps.
Chamomile tea is well-known for its soothing, relaxing effect, and is commonly used as a sleep aid. But did you know that chamomile is also a great natural remedy for period pain?
A review of studies indicates that intake of chamomile tea is associated with a significant increase in urinary levels of glycine, which can help relieve muscle cramps. Glycine also works as a nerve relaxant. Like ginger, chamomile tea also possesses anti-inflammatory properties, which can help ease the pain caused by menstrual cramps.
Chamomile tea is also a perfect alternative to coffee or caffeinated teas during your period. Caffeine is considered a vasoconstrictor, which means it causes the abdominal muscles to contract. This creates even more tightening in your stomach and makes your cramps much worse than before! Therefore, instead of your morning cup of joe, try chamomile tea or other herbal teas like peppermint or ginger tea.
With its liquorice-like taste and celery-like crunchy texture, this herb possesses anti-inflammatory effects, which can help to reduce inflammation and menstrual pain. It is also loaded with anethole, a compound with anti-spasm effects that may help to alleviate menstrual cramps in some people.
A 2012 study suggests that fennel is an effective herbal remedy for menstrual pain. Young women who took capsules with 30 mg of fennel extract four times a day for three days from the start of their menstrual period experienced less pain than a placebo group. Fennel seeds have also been found to diminish nausea and fatigue associated with menstrual bleeding as well as decrease the duration of the menstrual cycle.
This aromatic spice and the popular household ingredient is widely used for cooking and baking. Cinnamon also have antifungal and antibacterial properties and can help improve gut health, lower blood pressure and manage menstrual symptoms.
One study demonstrated that women who took cinnamon capsules taken three times a day for the first three days of the menstrual cycle reported less bleeding, nausea, vomiting and pain compared to the placebo group.