Women always have to deal with so much. One of which is stressing about your next period, when is it going to come, is it going to be bad/worse than the last one. These are only a few of a woman’s concerns when it comes to her periods. You also need to make sure you have access to your favored product to help ease your period.
Let us be honest, having to rely on pills which can ease the cramps and aches, they may not kick in within the next 30 minutes to an hour and it can feel unbearable. Especially when you are experiencing painful cramps now! Being sure you are set for whatever might hit you, in terms of period cramps can make you feel much better about the prospect of future cramps in that time of month.
Sometimes quick fixes are a necessity
Before we get into the hacks picked out to help you, let us be clear about something. If you should need relief immediately from your cramps, then that is really where taking medication would make sense and we would recommend. If you need it, go for it. An example of when you should take your Ibuprofen, is when you are at work and find yourself incapable of doing your work.
Use a heating pad
You can use a heat pad to ease your menstrual pain, they work wonders and do not have to cost much. If you have one then, depending on the type, you can either put it in a microwave and heat it up or if it is an electric one then all you have to do is plug it in and use it. But start on a low setting and slowly increase, it is safe to use for 15 to 30 minutes. If you have it at a low setting then you can leave for a maximum of an hour. Just either have it behind your hips or have it lying on your waist to alleviate your pain.
Something to note, you can add a few drops of lavender oil on the covering of the heating pad to help your body to relax and fall asleep easier. Again, if you are using an electric one then be sure that it does not keep heating and will die off after an amount of time in case you fall asleep.
Get enough sleep
A good night’s sleep is always important for your body to function normally, but even more so when it comes to your time of the month. If you have a hard time falling asleep due to the menstrual aches and pains, you could try going for a melatonin supplement.
But we would recommend starting at a low dose, normally between 1 to 5 mg, to see if it works well with your body, especially if it is going to be the first time you take it. It is recommended to take a pill roughly an hour before your bedtime. Remember to be careful when taking it, because everyone’s body is different and you do not want to take it too often.
You can try some pickle juice
You do not need to try a particular brand of pickle juice, it can even be homemade! Before you say it, I know it sounds gross but we genuinely believe it may help. As we know pickle juice, not to mention bananas, has potassium that is important for easing sore muscles and muscle cramps. Now we understand no research has been done to prove this, but at the very least it may help alleviate your cramps to a certain degree due to its high sodium levels. Also it can help sate any salty food craving while on your period.
Basically the bottom line is that it may help relieve your cramps similarly to how it relieves muscle cramps from exercise. You can try small amounts, such as a teaspoon or if you’re braver you can try a small teacup’s worth of amount.
Take a warm bath
Taking hot baths is always fun and relaxing, especially after having a rough day or you just came back from the gym. It helps your body relax and unwind, by providing some natural relief from your cramps and other symptoms you may be experiencing in your period. Taking one before bed can also help you sleep better. You can try adding some epsom salt and a few drops of lavender oil, which aids in increasing blood flow and relaxing. A bath like this will make for a very relaxing evening.
But remember that warm to hot water can increase any experienced dizziness if you should have a heavy flow. It can also increase your menstrual flow, so keep it in mind when deciding on the tampon to use or whether you need to, say, empty out your menstrual cup before sitting in a bathtub.
Try some cocoa!
Many of us are “addicted” to chocolate and feel a craving to eat some at any time of the day, but have you wondered why you may crave it more so than usual? When it is your time of the month? Cocoa/dark chocolate are “foods” rich in magnesium, giving it a relaxing effect on the body.
Furthermore, dark chocolate has shown to reduce the physical stress response. Stress hormones affect many processes in the body, and an extended or elevated presence of these hormones can be negative. Now since stress can be the source of hormone imbalance, then an intake of cocoa can help reduce this response. Also has been shown to help in decreasing inflammation in the body
Try some deep breathing
Breathing is something we do not need to think about, but there are times where we give it thought. When we take a deep breath, whether in yoga or when we need to relax and calm down. When you take a deep breath it helps you lower your heart rate if you are anxious, for example, and also helps lower your cortisol (stress) hormone levels. It stimulates the release of GABA, a calming hormone when released it helps your brain to start to calm down from the anxiety it feels.
Menstrual cramps are a constriction of muscles in your body where you can feel an enormous amount of pain. Deep breathing can help with this, by moving your mental state into a state of relaxation which helps you to release some of this constriction.
Clary Sage Oil
Another natural remedy for periods which you can try is clary sage essential oil. It has been shown to relieve some of the menstrual cramps and other PMS symptoms you may be experiencing. You can find this oil commonly in blends that are intended to help ease your pain caused by your monthly cycle. You can purchase an oil roller to rub onto your stomach region when menstrual cramps occur.
Clary sage oil is generally used for digestive problems, menstrual cramps, and symptoms of menopause among other things. Now even though it has been used for the purpose of relieving cramps, you should keep in mind that there still has not been enough scientific evidence to support these claims.
Omega-3 fish oil
We have heard of fish oil or omega-3 fatty acids, called DHA and EPA, and ALA. From the name, it is commonly found in fish although it can be found in other sources. It has the ability to help lower the pain experienced from your period. Since they have anti-inflammatory properties meaning they help balance out the levels of prostaglandins and prevent the levels from getting too high to the point of excruciating pain.
The 2 forms of fish oil that are the easiest to absorb are DHA and EPA, which are found in fatty fish such as sardines, and salmon. As mentioned, there are other plant based sources for omega-3, like chia seeds, hemp seeds, flaxseeds, and walnuts. However these contain the ALA form of omega-3 fatty acids, which is not converted to DHA and EPA that well.