It’s the first day of your period and… the nightmare begins! Horrible muscle cramps in your tummy spreading to the back, thighs, breast and head; nausea and exhaustion make you cancel even your most important dates, as the only thing you feel like doing is to stay in bed hugging your pillow.
You have taken one pill after the other, yet nothing seems to work for you. If it makes you feel better, I can assure you that most women experience some kind of discomfort or… suffering during their menstrual days. And believe it or not, most of them forget to follow the most natural and easy advice that can take away the pain.
- Keep warm!
One of the most effective ways to alleviate the abdominal pain is to keep your tummy warm. Heat treatment has been proved to be blocking the pain message to the brain, as most painkillers do. Placing a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel on your tummy until it starts getting cold will help you reduce the pain. You might also consider using a hot pad instead.
- Eat healthily.
Avoiding junk food is something you should do anyway, but it gets even more important during your menstrual days. Try to increase your uptake in calcium, zinc, vitamin B and omega-3 fatty acids, as all these can reduce the swelling and cramps; for example fish accompanied with boiled vegetables would be a great option for your lunch. At the same do not forget to drink plenty of water.
- Replace coffee with teas.
I know it may be hard to open your eyes in the morning without your cup of coffee but it is recommended that you avoid it. Due to its diuretic nature, caffeine can significantly make cramps worse and heighten the discomfort of your period’s symptoms. The good news? There is a great variety of herbal teas that not only are a great substitute for coffee but can also promise to relieve you from your period pains. Chamomille includes ingredients that help the uterus relax, while ginger helps your body keep warm. You can also try a tea with Red dates, a Chinese herb which will help your iron levels stay high, now that you lose some blood.
You just have your period; you are not ill. Move! When you exercise your body produces endorphins, which is your own miraculous substance; it is your natural analgesic and gives you euphoria. Of course, I don’t mean to go into a hard training those specific days but some walking, cycling or yoga would definitely help.
- Massage and aromatherapy.
Essential oils like marjoram, lavender and chamomile are well known for their relaxing activities during your period. Try a combination of them during your bath or light an aromatic candle. Light, circular massage of the oils around your lower abdomen or lower back could also help to take the tense off your muscles and relieve the pain.
Fortunately or not, every woman is different and a method that worked for your friend may not work for you. But don’t quit! Keep trying; when you will find it, you will realize that it well worthed the trying!