A period is never a walk in the park, but painful cramps can make you dread that time of the month. The pain can get so bad that getting out of bed is a challenge. The good news is that you do not have to suffer through unbearable cramps forever. Here are five effective ways to deal with menstrual cramps:
Use a Heating Pad
When you are dealing with menstrual cramps, heat is your friend. Heat improves blood flow, which can help reduce pain in your stomach. As you are lying down on a bed or couch, place a heating pad on your lower stomach and hold it there for about 20 minutes. Afterward, the pain should be much less severe.
Exercise is probably the last thing you want to think about when you are suffering from menstrual cramps. However, doing a low-impact exercise, such as yoga, can actually help relieve your cramps. A good yoga pose for menstrual cramps is the reclining twist. Pop Sugar recommends placing your left knee over your right side as you lie on your back. Then, as you look to your left side, stretch your arms out as wide as you can. After you hold the position for five breaths, repeat the pose on your other side.
Stay Away from Coffee
It is a wise idea to steer clear from coffee and other caffeinated beverages during your menstrual cycle. Caffeinated drinks can narrow your blood vessels, increasing the risk of cramps.
Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is very important when you are on your menstrual cycle. If you do not drink enough, you can retain more water, which leads to bloating and painful cramps. Aim to drink about eight glasses of water every day.
Massage the Area
Another way to relieve menstrual cramps is to gently massage your lower stomach. While you lie down, massage the area in circular motions for several minutes. Doing this will relax your stomach muscles, decreasing pain in the area.
Cramps are a common side effect of a menstrual cycle, but they do not have to be so excruciating. If you follow these helpful tips, you can reduce your menstrual cramps and feel a lot better. However, if your cramps are still very painful, you should make an appointment with your gynecologist soon. She can determine if an underlying condition is causing the painful cramps or not.