5 Ways To Deal With Menstrual Cramps

Writer: Farah Karim

You wake up one morning and feel a kind of ache on your lower abdomen. It’s a dull, lulling ache that you can almost ignore it but occasionally the pain just goes a little too far and you have to pop a pill before leaving the house, hoping that the pain would subside later on in the day.

Every woman has experienced the excruciating pain of menstrual cramps at least a couple of times in their life. What’s worse, this can leave some bedridden and unable to move for the entire day whereas some women feel nothing at all and are just plain annoying. It’s basically incurable, but how do you make the pain feel… Less painful?

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1. Diet

As with every aspect of our lives, diet plays an essential role in our overall well-being. So what should you eat? Generally, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables are the best duo to combat your monthly pain. Food like turmeric can help as the root has been found to sooth muscle spasms and alleviate pain associated with cramps. The cleaner your diet, the more physically fit you are and the less pain you’ll experience.

2. Hot patch

This old-school tool for sore muscles also works for menstrual cramps. By applying heat to the area, this relaxes the uterine muscles and relieves the restriction of blood flow that causes pain. Even athletes use this to soothe their sore muscles after a competition. But be careful, too hot and it might  burn you. Ouch!

3. Exercise

This might sound crazy but trust us, it works. Any type of physical activity will help reduce your cramps. By doing any kind of movement, exercise and the likes, you’ll be pumping more blood throughout your body. Not only that, but it also releases endorphins. This counteracts prostaglandins and reduces the pain of the craps.

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4. Acupuncture

You’ve heard of acupuncture — the practice of sticking scary needles into your body. Don’t be afraid. In fact, embrace it! According to Jeannie Bianchi, a licensed acupuncturist in San Francisco, it relaxes the nervous systems by letting more blood flow to the internal organs. While there isn’t much scientific research done on this, there’s enough women out there who believe that acupuncture does work. Why not give it a go?

5. Massage with essential oils

Like exercise, what massaging does is that it increases blood flow and while it might increase your flow for maybe a day after, it’ll also reduce any cramping. Take this as an opportunity to give yourself some me-time after a long day. Use some essential oils to help alleviate the pain and relax after a hectic work schedule. It’s a win-win situation.