9 Ways to Relieve Period Cramps
If you missed last week’s post, we chatted about “11 Things Succesful Women Do Everday” and before that, we talked about “Insecurity.” Both of these topics received fantastic response from you, my readers, which I really appreciate. I love getting feedback and knowing what you are enjoying as well as what not’s really working. Your responses teach me so much, so please keep them coming!
Today, I’m throwing y’all a curveball. We’re still very much doing Girl Talk, but we’re talking about the real girl stuff. We’re tackling cramps.
As many of you know, I suffer from Endometriosis. One of the main symptoms for an Endo patient is menstrual cramps. Not the “Oh, I feel yucky because I have cramps” kind. But the “My innards feel as though they are being violently ripped out of my body and I have no choice but to lie here in severe agony” kind. I’m not exaggerating. I have felt level 10 pain during a cycle that makes you think, “This is it. This is how it all ends for me. I’m going to die from cramps.”
Being that I have years of experience under my belt, I wanted to share some of my cramp hacks with you. I have tried anything and everything to get the pain to a manageable level, so I’m going to tell you which things have actually worked for me.
Before we get started, I wanted to say that I did a small Google search on this topic before writing this post and I was really surprised to see that there were no bloggers talking about this health concern. I gotta say, I’m kinda disappointed because I know so many women deal with this nightmare monthly. I only found health websites (Hello WebMD, my worst nightmare because it always leads me to believe I have a terminal illness) or websites such as Always or Tampax. Maybe I’m the only honest blogger out there? Or maybe I’m just way too open… Either way, I know that when I have a health issue, one of the first things I do is hop on the internet looking for answers or tips. I’m hoping this helps some of my readers the next time that they have to endure the worst time of the month.
How to Treat Cramps
- Pain killers. Such a duh, right? Wrong. I’m my own worst enemy when it comes to pain. I feel like if I can just “wait it out” then the pain will pass, so I don’t really need that Advil. So dumb. I’m not sure why I make myself suffer. The older I get, the less patience I have for pain, so I’ve learned to pop an Advil at the first sign of cramps to keep them from progressing to the point of losing my legs (not being able to walk due to the pain).
- Heating Pad. AKA: My best friend 2-3 days every month. Heat helps to relieve the pain for me. Some months I’ll have back cramps, others I can tell you exactly where my ovaries are located. This heating pad is my favorite one ever. It’s extra large so it’ll wrap around your back or belly easily. I talk about it more in this video.
- Warm drinks. Pick your poison: tea, coffee, cocoa… Anything hot seems to help, as long as you’re not nauseous. There are special tea blends that are supposed to help at this time of the month, but I’m a coffee drinker so I haven’t tried any of those.
- ThermaCare Wraps. You know those days that you have cramps but you can’t do what you really need/want to and stay in bed? I know those days. I hate those days. I had days when I had excruciating pain but couldn’t miss a class/shift/appointment. These handy little heated wraps are really something. When you need relief without a cord (heating pad) then these really are worth every penny. They don’t get as hot as I’d like them to for as long as I’d like them to, but they do the job.
- Hot Foot Bath. This one is an old wive’s tale that my mom taught me, and her mom taught her. And it really does stinkin’ work. When I would be on the floor in a crumpled ball crying from the pain, my mom would fill the bath tub with 1-2″ of the hottest water she could get. She would then dip my feet in the water for about 10 seconds, then take them out and repeat this several times. The hot water on your feet does this magical pain relief that I can’t explain. Obviously, don’t use water hot enough to actually burn your skin, but the hottest that you can safely stand. After the foot bath, next my mom would…
- Take a hot bath. My mom would then fill the tub up with hot water and make me sit in it to relax. Hot baths really do help to melt away the pain, stiffness in your body and also worries from the day. This is my absolute favorite bubble bath. The lavender scent helps to add to the relaxing experience.
- Get comfy. Get in your softest, comfiest clothes. Be sure to keep your feet warm, even if the means using the heating pad on them. There really is something about cold feet and cramps, I haven’t done any research on this, but for me it’s a real thing. I’ll link my favorite comfy clothes and socks below.
- Clear your mind. The last thing you need is stress on top of the pain. You need happy thoughts, so turn on your favorite chick flick because, girlfriend, it’s time to relax.
- Essential oils. I have found that rolling Frankincense oil over my ovaries then applying a heat pad on top works faster to heal my cramps than popping Advil! Frankincense is such a miracle oil, it’s something we should all keep in our medicine cabinets!
These are things that I’ve personally tried and have found work for me. What is your remedy for cramps? Do you get them regularly? If so, do you have to miss any work or school for them? I missed at least one day every single month of school then work before I had my first Endometriosis surgery. I still get cramps monthly, but they’re no where near as bad as they once were. Mine are now manageable. I just overall feel like I have the flu the first day or two with cramps, headache and lethargy.
shop this post
This blog post was originally posted on October 25, 2016.