Periods are a regular phenomenon in the life of a woman that comes every 23 to 28 days which can cause an added stress of period cramps. Though the intensity of pain may vary from woman to woman, the market is flooded with various products that claim to relieve menstrual cramps. Sometimes household items and regular exercises serve as a holy grail and a safety net that can effectively minimise cramps.
1. Light Exercise
Regular exercising includes strength training, cardio sessions, high-intensity interval training and yoga promote better health and in turn, help in Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS). Yoga Poses like suryanamaskar, child’s pose (Balasana), Reclining Twist (Bharadvaja), and Inverted leg pose (Viparita Karani) are simple yet effective poses that will leave you feeling a million times better and relieved from pain.
2. Drink Herbal Teas
Teas provide warmth and an instant feel-good factor which can elevate the feeling of well-being and have multiple health benefits too. The most effective teas during periods are Chamomile and Peppermint teas since they have cooling properties and also help in digestion. Ginger or fennel boiled in water is also a useful remedy for Dysmenorrhea.
3. Use Hot Compress
A hot water bottle or heating pad around the abdomen and on the lower back also ensures that rampant cramps are curtailed by offering soothing heat. If you have to go out and it’s difficult to put a heating pad on, then there are many heat patches available which people use during winters too that give warmth to the effective area all day long and are easily disposable.
4. A Well-Balanced Diet
Though some women have salt and sugar cravings during this time, many researchers claim that indulging in these cravings will not help relieve cramps. Instead, maintaining a well-balanced diet throughout the month and having 6-7 meals in a day will significantly improve PMS conditions and pain. Saturated fats, fried food, fast food and excessive caffeine intake should be avoided. Also, it is usually shown in the West that many women have ice creams during periods but the eastern culture believes that refraining from cold food is important.
5. Essential Oils Massage
Aromatic oils are renowned for their aromatic properties which reduce anxiety, mood swings, headaches and muscular pains. Essential oils like rosemary, lavender, peppermint, rosehip oils and also easily available oils like coconut, olive and almond can be a lifesaver during this time. Simply start by rubbing these oils between the palms to make them warm and gently apply to the affected areas for best results.
6. Active Hydration
Having at least 8 glasses of water in a day is key to a healthy life as it combats many diseases. Dehydration causes abdominal cramps and drinking water frequently flushes out all the toxins from the body and aids in the reduction of cramps.
7. Wonders of Acupressure
This ancient traditional Chinese technique is an extremely useful tool when the pain in the abdomen intensifies. Apply manual pressure on different points of the body that has a direct impact on the affected areas as it treats blocked energies. You can easily do this yourself or ask someone to help and adjust the level of pressure according to your pain tolerance.
8. Reduce Stress
Stress is the underlying cause of many health comorbidities that can also be an additional factor to severe cramps during menstruation. You can use various stress relief techniques like breathing exercises, meditation, and yoga that have shown to help in the reduction of tension. Also, you can divert your mind by listening to soothing music, happy movies or tv series, and taking a stroll in nature.