Periods suck. Period. And sometimes we can find ourselves cursing the other half of the population and wondering WHY OH WHY does it have to hurt this much?
Here’s some of the science behind that stupidly painful reaction your body has each month, plus some things you can do to ease it.
The hormone drop just before your period can also make your boobs tender and painful too. Plus the extra stress of it can create headaches. Thanks a bunch, body.
And that’s why it hurts like a mutha trucker.
What can you do to help make that pain eff off?
Well, firsts things first, make sure your “period survival kit” is ready to go each month. See here:
The NHS gives the following advice regarding over the counter medications:
Taking Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) are the best option to help ease the pain. This is a very posh way of saying ‘ibuprofen’.
However these aren’t great if you have asthma. So if that’s you then stick to common painkillers like paracetamol.
If you’re using, or thinking about using, a form of contraception then the combined oral pill will often help reduce the intensity of your period too as it thins the lining of the womb. Double win!
Other things that can help:
Gentle exercise. Not when you’re in total agony, of course. But a little swim (don’t worry, the flow is halted by the pressure of water. Like magic) or a short walk is largely beneficial.
Warm bath/shower. The heat will help ease the pain while also making you relax.
Hot water bottle. Right onto the source of the pain. Even if that’s between your legs. It works wonders.
It’s important to understand what is ‘normal’ for you. If you regularly have heavy and painful periods then that’s normal for you.
But if it suddenly begins being heavier than your used to or the pain is significantly more intense despite using your usual coping methods then definitely speak to someone. Family member, GP, school nurse. There are special medications for extreme situations, so don’t sweat it.