Menstrual cramps, also known as dysmenorrhea or dysmenorrhoea, affects about half of all women during their periods. Dysmenorrhea can manifest itself in a number of ways with possible symptoms including abdominal cramps that may spread to the back and thighs, a headache, and nausea. In order to ease menstrual cramps without medicine, there are a few home remedies for relief including dietary changes, herbal remedies, and boosting the body’s endorphins.
There are a few things that can be eaten or avoided to ease menstrual cramps without medicine. The University of Oregon recommends reducing consumption of caffeine during menstruation to relieve and prevent pain. Giving the body an influx of valuable vitamins and nutrients in the days leading up to and during a menstrual cycle can make it less severe. Among the most important nutrients for relieving menstrual pain are the B vitamins, calcium, and magnesium.
The University of Maryland Medical center lists a number of herbal home remedies to ease menstrual cramps without medicine. Herbal teas like raspberry and mint can be helpful. Fish oil is effective at reducing cramping as it is rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are associated with menstrual pain relief. Other herbs that may be helpful at relieving menstrual pain include cramp bark, corydalis, and acai.
According to the UK National Health Service, to ease menstrual cramps, a simple home remedy is to apply heat to areas experiencing cramping. This can be done with a heated blanked, a hot cloth, or a hot water bottle (at a reasonable temperature, that is). A hot bath or shower may be effective as well. The Mayo Clinic reports that applying heat can be as effective as pain medication at relieving menstrual pain.
Boost natural endorphins:
One effective way to ease menstrual cramps with home remedies is to boost the body’s natural pain relievers, endorphins. There are several ways to encourage the body to release endorphins. Exercise is one of the best endorphin boosting activities. During exercise, the strain on the muscles causes endorphins to be released, proving a natural analgesic to relieve pain. Eating spicy foods trigger the release of endorphins through a similar mechanism. Other methods of boosting endorphins for relief from menstrual pain include getting plenty of sunlight and laughter.
Dysmenorrhea, or menstrual pain, can turn a period into an exclamation mark. Menstrual cramps are caused by the contraction of the uterus during a period. This cramping and pain may be relieved with a few natural remedies including adjustments to the diet prior to menstruation, applying heat to the lower abdomen, and boosting the production of natural endorphins.