Period pains—dysmenorrhoea—could be dull and annoying to some women and severe and extreme to others. Menstrual cramps can cause a lot of pain in the lower back and abdomen, and it may start a day or two before menstruation. Before you rush to a drug store for ibuprofen to ease that painful cramping, try foods that may 'melt' those mind-numbing cramps.
A Cup of Herbal Tea
A cup of herbal tea can go a long way to relieving menstrual cramps. However, if you have been using some blood-thinning drugs, are on lithium or were once diagnosed with hormone cancer, consult your gynaecologist first before you take herbal tea since some herbs function as oestrogens. Add peppermint oil in the herbal tea to make it more effective, especially if your menstrual cramps last for more than three days. Herbal tea doesn't just calm you down; it also reduces muscle spasms during menstruation.
A Plate of Veg and Fruits
Cramping doesn't only cause pain but also inflammation that could aggravate due to oxidative stress. Vegetables and fruits are highly loaded with phytonutrients and antioxidants that minimise oxidative stress and eventually ease pain and inflammation during menstruation. If you want to have a lot of antioxidants in your body and reduce period pain, eat different vegetables and fruits. Different coloured fruits contain different antioxidants that minimise oxidative stress, helping you to have a pain-free period.
Eat Pineapples, Kiwis and Bananas
Bananas are rich in potassium and contain vitamin B6 that effectively relieves cramping and bloating symptoms. A piece of fresh pineapple isn't just delicious but also contains an enzyme—bromelain—known to fight inflammation. Kiwis contain actinidin—an enzyme that makes protein digestion more efficient. Kiwi fibre improves bowel movement, preventing constipation that could make cramping worse.
If these remedies don't relieve menstrual cramps, talk to a gynaecologist. Once the gynaecologist has reviewed the symptoms and your medical history, they may recommend ultrasound exam, pelvic exam or even laparoscopy to treat dysmenorrhoea. They may prescribe birth control pills, a vaginal ring or the patch among other hormonal medications to relieve period pain. A gynaecologist could also prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, but they could cancel the prescription if you have liver damage, asthma, ulcers, aspirin allergy, stomach disorders or bleeding disorders. If these medications and other alternative treatments such as acupuncture and magnesium and vitamin B1 supplements don't ease menstrual cramps, the gynaecologist may recommend surgery to remove uterine polyps. Speak with a gynaecologist about your period.