Menstrual cramps are medically termed as ‘dysmenorrhea’ and as the name suggests, are experienced only during menstruation. An independent research showed that more than 50% of women have painful menstrual cramps. The pain is typically felt in the abdomen, the lower back and even the pelvis in some cases.
Medically, dysmenorrhea has been categorized as primary and secondary.Primary dysmenorrhea results from an increased level of prostaglandins during menstrual cycle. Secondary dysmenorrhea is caused due to presence of undetected cervical cancer,endometriosis and ovarian cysts. This type of menstrual cramping can be treated using prescription drugs only.
Sometimes secondary dysmenorrhea could also be due to other diseases like uterine fibroids and uterine polyps, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease and Adenomyosis. In some women use of intrauterine device as a form of birth control could lead to development of secondary dysmenorrhea.
Reasons For Menstrual Cramping
To get rid of the bloody tissues lining the wall of the uterus, the uterus tends to contract. This contraction leads to the expulsion of tissues and blood from the body during menstruation. Prostaglandins are hormones which help with smoother and easier uterine contractions. However, the hormones are also responsible for causing inflammation of the cervix and uterus which results in abdominal pain. As of now there have been no successful researches to show why and
How Prostaglandins Are Responsible For Menstrual Cramps.
During menstrual cramps, the woman experiences a throbbing pain that typically affects the abdomen and the pelvis. Some women also have cramps in thighs, lower back area and the lower abdomen. For some strange and undetected reason menstrual cramps also result in diarrhea, hot flashes, nausea, vomiting and profuse sweating.
Best Home Remedies For Treating Menstrual Cramps
Many women suffer from cramping during menstruation; some women have cramps once a while some may have cramps with every menstrual cycle. Women who get pain during their menstruation also tend to suffer from PMS as a result. PMS is pre menstrual stress which causes the woman to experience abdominal pain, mood swings and water retention a few days before the start of menstruation. In some women the pain that accompanies menstrual cramps is so severe that it can disrupt all the regular activities. For this reason it is important to treat the condition.
Over-the-counter medicines can help you get rid of the pain but with repeated use the body stops responding to them after some time. Then one has to switch over to a higher dosage or start taking a stronger pain medication. In the long run the chemicals in the medicines are only going to ruin your health.
Menstrual Cramps Can Be Treated Effectively Using Natural And Home Remedies. Read On To Find Out These Remedies.
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1. Ginger is an excellent herb for reducing the pain and inflammation in the cervix during menstruation. Prepare ginger tea by boiling a tablespoon of grated ginger in one cup water. Strain the ginger tea and add one teaspoon honey. This ginger concoction should be had three times a day. Begin taking the concoction four days before you start your period and continue until the second day of the period. You will experience less or no pain (depending on the severity of your condition).
2. Take a hot water bottle and fill it with hot water. Apply the hot compress directly over your aching parts including the abdomen, thighs, legs and lower back. The hot compress will provide you with immediate relief from cramping by soothing the inflamed muscles.
3. In case you don’t have hot water bottle then prepare hot compress by keeping a clean towel in the microwave for 2-3 minutes. Apply the heated towel over your body.
4. Avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of water. Increase your intake of fresh, sugar-free juices as well. If you allow your body to become dehydrated it will lead to severe menstrual pains.
5. Take a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds and have them with a glass of warm water the first thing in the morning. Fenugreek seeds are analgesic in nature and help with easier contractions of the uterus. This treatment should be done three days before the start of periods and continued for the entire course of the periods.
6. Drink three-five cups of chamomile tea on the first day of your menstruation. Chamomile has soothing effect on the nerves and muscles of the body. It also helps deal with depression and mood swings which often accompany menstruation. Peppermint and mint tea are also good for treating stress and cramps during periods.
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7. Chew on fennel seeds two days before you begin your menstruation. You could also make a concoction of fennel seeds and drink 200ml of it thrice a day. Prepare fennel infusion by boiling fennel in water. Fennel seeds are anti-spasmodic in nature and allow better contraction of the muscles in the uterus. This makes it easier for the blood to flow and also eases pain.
8. Include cinnamon in your daily diet. Sprinkle cinnamon powder over your non-vegetarian dishes and cakes and desserts. You can also add cinnamon to your cup of tea or prepare cinnamon tea and have three cups of it on the first day of your menstruation. It has anti-inflammatory properties and helps reduce the swelling of the cervix caused due to presence of prostaglandin. The aroma of cinnamon also acts on the frayed nerves and thus reduces stress and anxiety.
9. Teas prepared using basil and parsley also help relieve the symptoms of menstruation. They help deal with pain and inflammation by soothing the muscles in the body. Add basil and parsley leaves to your food; you could also chew on the leaves of basil and parsley for immediate relief from menstrual cramping.
10. Indulge in some form of exercise for at least 30 minutes each day. This could be anything from brisk walking, to swimming, to cycling, to running, to skipping or simply hula hooping. Exercising will keep your muscles strengthened. Strong muscles will find it easier to deal with cramping and inflammation caused due to menstruation. Also, exercising releases the feel-good hormones in the body which make us happy. A good tempered person will find it easier to deal with the symptoms of menstruation including the cramps.