Pain is an unfortunate part of life. And as women, we have more than our fair share. If periods weren’t intrusive enough, we have to deal with pain, bloating, fatigue, and irritability along with leaks, stains, and frequent bathroom trips. So how can we ease the pain and discomfort associated with menstruation?
1. Light Exercise
Moderate exercise can help ease mild cramps. The endorphins released during physical exertion can act as a natural pain reliever. Plus, sending attention away from your pain and putting it on other parts of your body can help refocus your mind and keep your pain from overwhelming you for the time being. But maintain caution. Heavy exercise can the have opposite effect, and excessive pain may not respond to this method.
2. OTC Pain Relief
Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen (Advil and Motrin) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) may help relieve mild to moderate period pain. But these may interfere with other medications you’re on, or may not work for you without exceeding daily limits. Do not take more than is recommended. Naproxen (Aleve) can ease excessive cramps but must be taken with food. Do not take aspirin, as it is a blood thinner and could cause a hemorrhage (uncontrolled blood flow).
3. Prescription Pain Relief
If OTCs don’t provide enough pain relief, talk to your OB-GYN and/or general practitioner about period-specific pain relief options. They’ll hesitate to prescribe opioids or anything of that strength, but if you make the case for a low dose and limited count with low or no refills they can give you some options that help keep your period from stopping your life every month.
4. CBD Pain Relief
Some US states have finally recognized the pain-relieving benefits of CBD from marijuana/hemp plants. There are pain-relieving balms, patches, roll-ons and edibles, and traditional strains of marijuana that are bred to limit inebriation and highlight relief available online and in local dispensaries. Getting a medical marijuana card in select states means researching and going to a doctor that provides these cards, or provides medical records for local health boards.
5. Hormonal Birth Control
Hormonal birth control, like patches, pills, rings, and IUDs, can ease the pain associated with menstruation, as well as cause lighter shorter periods. It may take a few months to feel the full effects but changing the body’s hormone levels can have a big influence on your pain. Plus, you’ll get pregnancy protection as well.
Do you have any other tricks to ease your period pain!? We want to know!
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