We have all heard of the age-old ailment of period cramps and most women would have suffered from it at one point or other. Some unfortunate ones continue to suffer from it chronically. However, apart from painkillers, are there any holistic ways to alleviate the pain?
Heat is a tried and true method of relieving pain from menstrual cramps. It is cheap, uncomplicated, easy and has no side effects.
The most fuss free method of using heat to ease discomfort is through the use of a hot water bottle or a heat patch. Just place it on your abdomen and relax.
Some studies have shown that a deficiency in magnesium, which is associated with anxiety and stress, has also been linked to more intense menstrual cramps. A magnesium bath with magnesium flakes is a good way to do this. Heat from a bath can also help relieve cramps.
Exercise can likely help in easing cramps, at least in part by increasing blood flow to the abdomen. Exercises such as aerobic exercise, stretching, and yoga all help decrease the intensity of menstrual pain. Exercise can also help in reducing stress, which can contribute to pain. If doing yoga, you might try focusing on poses that stretch and stimulate the abdomen, like the cobra, bridge, cat and cow and fish poses.
If your cramps are bad enough that they are not eased by a typical painkiller, and if they affect your ability to work, study or do any other everyday activities, it is best to talk to a healthcare professional. You should also see your healthcare provider if your cramping is suddenly or unusually severe, or lasts more than a few days.
Severe menstrual cramps or chronic pelvic pain could be a symptom of health conditions like endometriosis or adenomyosis so if you experience, these, it is best to get them checked out.