Ailment Painful Menstrual Periods

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FAQ's For Painful Menstrual Periods

Adding herbs with anti-inflammatory properties to one's diet can greatly reduce painful menstruations. Some effective herbs are turmeric, fennel, cramp bark (taken as tea), primrose oil, and black cohosh. Fish oil capsules are also great for easing pain.

Though some discomfort and occasional sharp pains are normal, experiencing pain so intense that you're unable to go to school or work and perform daily activities is definitely not normal. Consider seeking medical help if you are experiencing debilitating pain frequently.

One major risk contributing to the experience of dysmenorrhea is being under the age of 20. After full maturity, periods ideally regularize and cramping should become bearable. However in some cases, cramping can get worse with age. If you are experiencing period cramps that seemingly get worse as you grow older, consider seeking medical assistance as it may be an indicator of an underlying condition.

There are several effective ways to cope with period pains: Heating pad on the pelvic region and back
Warm bath
Abdominal and back massage
Light yoga
Regular physical exercise
Reducing consumption of salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol to prevent bloating
Consuming foods with anti-inflammatory properties like berries, tomatoes, pineapples and spices like turmeric, ginger or garlic

Avoid consuming salt, sugar, red meat, spicy foods, alcohol and caffeine. In terms of exercise, gynaecologists recommend continuing your usual regimen unless it causes too much pain or fatigue. Light excerise and relaxation yoga are generally encouraged, and there are no specific activities you should avoid on your period.

Menstrual cramps or dysmenorrhea is a condition caused in women experiencing menstruation. It occurs when the uterus sheds its inner lining once a month (menstruation) and releases a hormone called prostaglandin which triggers contractions to help expel the bloody lining. This can cause intense period cramps and discomfort. Though some uncomfortable feelings in the lower abdomen and legs are normal, having to skip work or school from pain is not, and must be checked by a medical professional immediately.

Some people are at a higher risk of experiencing painful period cramps. Some of these risks include:
Being under the age of 20
Having irregular menstruations
Never having been pregnant
Reaching puberty before the age of 11
Having a family history of painful menstruation
Heavy bleeding during menstruation

Underlying medical conditions can also cause dysmenorrhea. These conditions include:
Fibroids in the uterus
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)
Cervical stenosis

Medical treatment of painful menstruation cramps will depend on the intensity and duration of pain experienced. Pain relievers, NSAIDs and antidepressants (to control mood swings associated with PMS) may be prescribed to ease symptoms. A gynaecologist may also suggest birth control options in the form of pills, IUDs, injections, etc to help control painful cramps. If the source of pain is PID or an STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection), antibiotics may be prescribed to clear the infection. It is also recommended to take anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen several days before menstruation is expected. In very rare cases, when other options fail and the patient does not plan on bearing any children, a hysterectomy (surgery performed to remove the uterus) can be done.

Besides medical treatment, there are several natural remedies for cramps that can help in pain relief:
Heating pad on the pelvic region and back
Warm bath
Abdominal and back massage
Light yoga
Regular physical exercise
Reducing consumption of salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol to prevent bloating

Taking supplements like Vitamins B1, B6 and E, Omega-3 fatty acids, Calcium and Magnesium also go a long way in relieving period cramps. HerbsDaily provides customers with a wide selection of supplements effective in treating dysmenorrhea.