7 tips to ease period pain
Are your periods leaving you bed-ridden because the pain is so bad?
If you answered yes, you’re not alone. In fact, here’s a few statistics around period pain:
- Around 80% of women experience period pain at some stage in their lifetime
- In 5% to 10% of women the pain is severe enough to disrupt their life
- In 40% of women, period pain is accompanied by premenstrual symptoms, such as bloating, tender breasts, bloating, lack of concentration, mood swings, and fatigue.
Painful cramping, or pain in general, is associated with hormone-like substances known as prostaglandins. These guys stimulate inflammation in the body & cause the muscles to contract each month so that you can release the lining of your uterus. Prostaglandins aren’t bad though! The problem is that when there’s too many, your menstrual cramps become worse.
My clients often come to me wanting immediate relief, but we also work on long-term relief. So, let’s talk about the two options I give my clients who are struggling with severe period pain. There’s the “root cause” relief option, and the “my pain is so bad, I need anything to help me right now” option.
Root cause relief option:
- Significantly Reduce vegetable and Industrial Seed Oils
Because an increase of prostaglandins is directly linked to your Omega-3 and Omega-6 ratio (1), my first tip for you is to remove vegetable and industrial seed oils from your diet (canola oil, corn oil, sunflower oil, palm oil, margarine, etc.). Instead use these oils: Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Ghee + Grass-fed butter
- Add omega-3s to your diet
Numerous studies have found that taking fish oil supplements or increasing your omega-3s dramatically improves dysmenorrhea symptoms compared to taking Ibuprofen (3). This is a root cause option because it usually takes three months to notice a difference. Consider adding foods to your diet like salmon, mackerel, sardines, leafy greens (spinach + kale), seeds like chia and flax, and avocados.
- Eat Anti-Inflammatory
Research is showing more and more that inflammation in our brain, guts + cardiovascular systems (the kind you can’t see) is the root cause for much of the pain we experience related to our cycles. Eating anti-inflammatory is the quickest way to see sustainable long-term change in the severity of your period cramps. The biggest causes of inflammations are refined sugar, refined carbs that contain gluten, and the industrial seed oils we discussed earlier. In fact, these three things, along with dairy and alcohol, make up 70% of the total calories that Americans consume every day (4). Removing gluten, dairy, refined sugar and processed food from your diet will reduce inflammation in your body and give your hormones a chance to balance.
My pain is so bad, I need anything to help me right now option:
- Up your magnesium intake
Magnesium calms the nervous system, improves blood flow, curbs production of prostaglandins, and relaxes spasming uterine muscles… it’s a miracle really! There are numerous studies showing that magnesium eases period pain (5). To start incorporating magnesium into your day, you can take Epsom salt baths, go for an ocean swim if you are one of the lucky ones who live near a beach, incorporate more magnesium rich foods like almonds, spinach, cashews, pumpkin seeds, etc., or take a magnesium supplement. This is my favorite magnesium supplement.
- Use a heat pad or hot water bottle
Heat reduces muscle spasms
- Cut down or stop drinking coffee
I talk all about coffee in this article here.
- Buy yourself a TENS unit
TENS stands for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation and it works by releasing a current that distracts the nerves causing the pain and reduces your perception of pain. If your pain is really severe and you need immediate relief, I recommend trying one of these. This may also be a good option if you have endometriosis. Here’s one on amazon. Have a little more money to spend? Here’s one specifically for period pain.
Lastly, please know that painful periods can also be a sign of infection, fibroids or ovarian cysts, so it’s always important to check with your doctor.
I would love to hear from you!
Was this post helpful? Do you struggle with painful periods? What have you tried that has helped with the pain? Comment below and let me know! You can also come hang out with me on Instagram. I love getting to know you girls!
Information in this post and on this website is provided for informational purposes only. The information is a result of practice experience and research by the author. This information is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional or any information contained on or in any product label or packaging. Do not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing medication or other treatment. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always speak with your physician or other healthcare professional before taking any medication or nutritional, herbal or homeopathic supplement, or using any treatment for a health problem.
One last thing! Does this resonate with you?
- You want to uncover the ROOT CAUSE of your painful, heavy or irregular periods, mood swings + fatigue.
- You think you have endometriosis, but you haven’t been diagnosed, or you know you have it and need SUPPORT from someone who has experience managing the disease.
- You’re TIRED of your period controlling every aspect of your life – from relationships, to work, to your social life, etc.
- You’re ready to show up as the woman you know you’re meant to be in the world WITHOUT your PERIOD holding you back.
- You’re ready to feel IN CONTROL and in tune with your BODY + HORMONES.
- You’re ready to tap into your INTUITION so you can make the RIGHT decisions for your life + health.
And you want this support from someone who’s been there. Someone who will meet you exactly where you are in your health journey, hold space for you, and make you feel heard, understood and supported.
If this sounds like you, the Intuitive Period Healing Program is perfect for you! Do yourself and your hormones a favor, and check out the program page. Want to learn how we can work together to heal your period? Schedule a FREE 20-minute call with me. I’m here to support you through it all, sis! xo