I think I would need to start counting my friend’s hands as well to count how many times I have heard other women tell me about how bad their period cramps are. I mean, these cramps are debilitating and often feel like your uterus is falling out of your vagina the first day or two of your period. I guess we have all just become accustom to period cramps and think they are simply “normal”. But guess what ladies! We can say goodbye to our period cramps by changing a few things in our daily routine.
Yes, cramps that accompany your period are certainly common, but it doesn’t mean they are normal.
Personally, the intensity I used to experience from my period cramps used to be an 11/10. That’s right. I used to have to stay home from school as well as miss going to work in my early career. Why?Because the cramps I used to experience would have me rolled up in a ball on my bed rocking back and forth whilst squeezing a hot water bottle again my lower abdomen. Pain pills, hot water bottles, anti-inflammatories… they might be a method to alleviate some of the cramps, but these methods certainly don’t take the cramps away.
The intensity of cramps most certainly differ from woman to women. Where the cramps I used to experience was an 11/10, yours may be a 6/10 or a 29/10. The fact of the matter is, the intensity of these cramps are horrible and benefit us in no way at all. So, I want to help you experience pain-free and cramp-free periods. Or at least bring that 29/10 pain level down to a manageable 3/10.
But first, why do you think this pain is happening to you?
Period cramps normally occur because of many different reasons. We usually think that because we have a uterus that it must be normal to experience cramps. But actually, period cramps are an indication to us that our reproductive system isn’t functioning at its best – and that we can improve on its functionality.
This is where your hormones play a big part.
Painful periods, or if we are to use the medical word, dysmenorrhea, can either be due to something that is abnormal in your body (primary dysmenorrhea), or due to something that isn’t (secondary dysmenorrhea). When dysmenorrhea isn’t due to something abnormal, the cramping you’re experiencing may be due to conditions in your uterus like cysts, endometriosis, pelvic inflammation, fibroids or a few other conditions. This means that if you start treating the underlying condition of the pain, your pain will certainly disappear. When we’re looking at painful cramps that is due to an abnormality in your body, finding the root cause of the pain will be quite tricky and will usually not be due to one of the above conditions.
Normally women in their early twenties tend to suffer the most with intense period cramps. What we usually see, is as you become older, the severity of the cramps start to weaken. What we also see is that women who are very overweight or who are smokers tend to experience more intense cramps and for a longer amount of time (normally longer than 2 days). Women who also started their periods quite young in life tend to have a heavier flow and a more painful period than other women.
Once we have crossed all the physical caused off our check list, we now know that primary dysmenorrhea may result from a number of underlying reasons which include: An imbalance in our hormones (which may be due to diet, stress, or sleep patterns), poor circulation (which reduces blood flow to the uterus), or increased production in prostaglandin (which ends up triggering contracts of your uterus). All women naturally produce prostaglandins in our bodies and this is what enables us to shed the lining of our uterus each month. What’s more? When there is an overproduction of prostaglandins in your uterus during your period, you will most likely suffer from dysmenorrhea which worsens the frequency and severity of your period cramping.