While we know that dealing with your period each month is never a party, we also understand that every woman experiences their period differently. Some women barely, if ever have any symptoms or problems during this time of the month; while other women experience symptoms that are so painful and debilitating that it takes a toll on their personal and professional lives. If you are dealing with painful periods then it’s time to read on to find out how to relieve these stubborn monthly symptoms.
Painful periods, medically known as dysmenorrhea, don’t refer to the normal cramping and discomfort that can easily be remedied with pain relievers or a heating pad. Dysmenorrhea refers to either lower abdominal pain and cramping that lasts a few days before your period starts (primary dysmenorrhea) or cramping that appears as a result of another condition such as endometriosis (secondary dysmenorrhea).
Fortunately, there are ways to tackle this problem if this is something you are experiencing. While some women find relief from over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications when they experience menstrual cramps, if you deal with severe pain you may want to consider taking this pain medication a couple days before your period even begins. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications have the ability to greatly lessen and even stop uterine cramping while also decreasing your flow.
Along with these medications, you can also turn to alternative therapy such as acupuncture to help manage your symptoms, or turn to certain therapeutic exercises such as yoga to ease cramping.
If you don’t experience the relief you need through over-the-counter treatments, you’ll want to turn to your gynecologist for more specific care. Sometimes oral contraceptives are prescribed because they are effective for lessening both blood flow and menstrual cramping due to the hormones within the pills.
It’s important that if you have any questions or concerns about your period that you turn to a gynecologist who can provide you with the proper care and treatment you need. If painful periods are affecting you and aren’t responding to lifestyle modifications or medicines, or if the pain is getting worse, it’s a good time to call your women’s doctor.
If symptoms don’t improve even with other more aggressive measures, a diagnostic procedure known as a laparoscopy may be performed to determine the source of your pain.