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How can I reduce bad and severe period pains and cramps?

Updated on January 16, 2013
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I have written this article as a follow up to my earlier article called 'Severe Period Cramps and Bad Period Pains? Why You Should See Your Doctor'. The reason for this is that so many of the comments in my other article focus on people desperately looking for help to solve their period pains. Many of these women are at the end of their tether and have no idea what else they can do to ease the terrible period cramps (dysmenorrhea) they are having to endure most, (if not all) months.

Now my other article largely focuses on probable medical causes for severe period pain, and why these really should be looked into by a Doctor, e.g. Endometriosis and Ovarian Cysts, but before you assume those might be the cause of the extreme period pain, what can you do to try to reduce the period pains to bearable levels that don't leave you doubled up in agony, vomiting, or passing out, most months?

Firstly I would like to point out that few things you can do will completely remove any discomfort or pain caused by period cramps. At best you might be able to reduce the pain to a level that allows you to function in the workplace, school or at home for the duration the cramping lasts. It is also a mistake to assume that swallowing as many painkillers as you can is the answer, and that if they fail to work there must be a serious medical problem that needs an appointment at A&E. You first need to understand that period cramps are just that 'cramps', and a painkiller alone is fighting a losing battle because at best it can only smother or hide the pain, not remove the cause of it.

I have been answering comments on my first article for several years now, and I suppose it has become a slight frustration to me that I get the same comments daily, and that clearly the commenter in each case has failed to read any of the preceding comments to their own. Usually these comments do take the form of young women begging for help and describing the extent of their pain, and how painkillers of various kinds do not make any difference to their agony.

I naturally want people who have tried all the obvious methods to reduce their period pains, to then go down the routes I suggest in my other article. This is because of what I went through for many years as a result of my own Doctors failing to even suggest further investigations after my enduring years of pain that could have been largely avoided if they had not made the mistake of simply taking my condition at 'face value' (not to mention that the results of the ultimate investigations largely explained my infertility and how surgery could have allowed me to have a baby if I had known earlier what was really happening inside my body).

However....

......there are always going to be many women who simply suffer from bad period cramps and severe period pain, and have no underlying problems such as I had. Any woman suffering from severe period pains should always explore all the obvious solutions before assuming her problem is as serious as mine was, or even worse! In most cases it will most likely be a problem with pain alone, and for young girls new to periods and the associated pains this can be really scary. It is worth noting that many women report the most severe period pains they experienced were in the early years of their periods, and these settled down as their bodies matured.

So, to go to the solutions all women should explore when suffering from period pains, especially those new to periods and the period cramps they are experiencing. These solutions should be tried before rushing off to a Doctor insisting on further investigations, and I urge you to give these a try before worrying or panicking about the level of pain you are going through.

Endometriosis And Other Pelvic Pain
Endometriosis And Other Pelvic Pain

Herbal and dietary therapies for endometriosis, PMS and Period pain are explained in detail by Dr Margaret Taylor in the book ‘Endometriosis and other pelvic pain’. Dr Taylor is a GP who has worked for 20 years combining herbal and dietary therapies with conventional medicine.

 

Period Pains and Cramps Solutions List

1) Probably the one I mention the most in my other Hubpage article. This is the one thing that saved me from the worst of the agonising pains, and whilst only being available on prescription, Doctors will normally put at least six months worth on one prescription. This is the tablet Mefenamic Acid 500mg, an anti cramp medication that actually stops the cramps, and therefore the actual cause of the pain. So many young women on my other article plead with me for help, whilst quoting various tablets they have tried for pain, all of which are painkillers!!! Painkillers are generally fighting a losing battle when it comes to really bad period pains, and it is a bit like trying to put out a fire with a napkin. I have mentioned Mefenamic Acid loads of times as a result of this.

2) Warm baths. A warm bath really does ease the pains associated with your period. It somehow seems to relax all the relevant painful areas in a way a shower simply can't. Take some time to run a nice bath, preferably scented with some essential oils like lavender, and then put aside a good hour to relax and soak.

3) Lavender or Clary Sage essential oils. Again I highly recommend Lavender or Clary Sage oils (these must be 'pure essential oils' if they are to work). Gently massage a small amount on to the painful areas and leave them for your skin to absorb. Lavender and Clary Sage oils are natural painkillers, but Lavender is also a natural sedative so should help you to sleep better in spite of the discomfort.

4) A hot water bottle. Hot water bottles are a Godsend when it comes to period pains. Of course these days they don't have to contain water, and microwavable 'bottles' full of cereal products are just as effective. A hot water bottle held against the abdomen can definitely ease the pain.

5) Evening Primrose Oil. Many women swear by Evening Primrose Oil as a cure for their period pains. I personally cannot say I have ever tried it, but cannot dismiss the fact that many have and many say it works well. Probably easiest to take in a capsule form, as well as being easily available from chemists or pharmacies and health food shops.

6) The Pill. Assuming you aren't trying for a baby the pill can help with period pains by regulating your hormones.

7) Lying in a fetal position with your knees tucked up against your chest can ease the pain caused by period cramps.

8) Mild exercise can help, although that will probably be the last thing you feel like doing. Gentle exercise like walking and swimming will improve the blood supply and should therefore help the cramps to decrease.

9) Acupuncture. Many women swear by this for alleviating period pains. Certainly you have nothing to lose by giving it a try as it has proven to be an effective painkiller for all kinds of painful conditions.

10) Alcohol. A glass or two of your favourite tipple can help to relax you (also thinning the blood), and therefore the cramping tissues will relax too. Give this a try, especially before bed as additionally it will help to get you off to sleep.

11) Massage. Probably more relaxing if someone else does the massaging for you. Concentrate on the lower back and abdomen to ease the pain.

12) Painkillers. I do recommend these in conjunction with other treatments such as Mefenamic Acid tablets, but I also feel the two work best when used together. Painkillers alone rarely solve severe period cramps, probably because it is quite simply asking too much of them.

13) Adjust your diet to include plenty of foods high in zinc, calcium and B vitamins. These should reduce the level of bloating and alleviate the cramps.

14) Avoid caffeine, alcohol and tobacco, (yes I know I said before to try a glass of your favourite tipple to ease the pains, but everyone is different, so in some cases alcohol can help and in others it will make the problem worse. You have to do what works for you).

15) Try meditation to control the pain and mentally 'switch it off'. In other words 'talk to your brain and tell it what to do'.

16) Eat plenty of Bananas for their Vitamin B6 content.

17) Eat fresh Pineapples for their bromelain content, (bromelain is an enzyme thought to help relax muscles and therefore possibly help with menstrual cramps).

18) Keep your fluid intake up and drink plenty of water (approx 2 litres per day).

19) Drink herbal teas, of which there are many to choose from. Popular choices include Chamomile, Valerian, Raspberry leaf, Peppermint, Hibiscus (Red Tea) and Red Raspberry.

20) Avoid tampons and try to use sanitary towels instead. This avoids pressure being placed on the cervix as the tampon swells up.

21) Invest in some Magnesium tablets from your local health food shop. The correct dose is between 100 and 200mg taken every 2 hours, but for no longer than 2 days. Magnesium is sold in health food shops as magnesium chelate. 500mg of magnesium chelate contains 100mg of magnesium. You can ingest magnesium through your diet too by eating more green vegetables, nuts, seeds and wholegrain foods.

22) Vitamin E is also very helpful if taken for a couple of days prior to your period starting, and then for the first few days after the period actually arrives. Apparently it is especially effective for teenagers with painful periods. It may also make your periods lighter than normal in some cases. The correct dose is 400-500 iu of natural Vitamin E taken daily.

23) Zinc (mentioned earlier) can also be taken in tablet form. Do not exceed the recommended dosage though as if you do it can prevent your body absorbing copper, manganese and molybdenum in food, and cause nausea, stomach irritation and fatigue. The recommended dose for period pain is around 40mg of zinc daily for the initial month, then a lower dose of 20mg of zinc daily if it is going to be used on a long term basis. Zinc in tablets can be labelled in different ways, essentially you will want either 220mg of ‘zinc chelate’ twice a day or 20mg of zinc (as chelate) twice a day, this will be made clear on the packaging though, so always double check before you take them.

24) Chasteberry (Vitax Agnus Castus) also helps period pain by increasing the effect of progesterone from the ovary. Apparently it is less likely to be effective if you are on the contraceptive pill as well. The correct does is 1000mg taken each morning. Do not use this if you suspect you may be pregnant.

25) Pernaton Gel is made from New Zealand green lipped mussels and is a wonderful pain reliever for all sorts of different pains. The reviews on this product are amazing, and it is used extensively by people awaiting joint replacements, suffering from Fibromyalgia, neck pains, arthritis etc. I would strongly suggest you give this a try, as although it isn't a cheap product, a little goes a very long way.

26) Iron Tablets. (Thanks to visitor Lyn for this tip). Most women suffer from anaemia which causes large clots and increased total blood volume. This in turn increases pressure on the cervix. Taking iron, (especially during your period) normalises flow so there are no clots and you therefore have a lighter period with no pain as a result. This may help some who have heavy bleeding, and Lyn found it especially helpful during her menopause for controlling her level of tiredness

If this article hasn't helped...

If this article still hasn't helped to bring your period pains and period cramps under control, and you have tried Mefenamic Acid tablets from your Doctor to no avail, then you really need to read my original article and go to the next level by making sure your Doctor investigates your problems further. You can read my original article if you go to:

Severe Period Cramps and Bad Period Pains? Why You Should See Your Doctor!

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    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 15 months ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry to hear that Jaci. Maybe try some of the other things instead. The Mefenamic Acid is the best thing though so speak to your doctor about it.

    • profile image

      jaci bailey 15 months ago

      My period started early, and I can't stand straight without it hurting horribly bad and some of those things seem to not help.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 2 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Ash, so sorry to hear you are going through this (I have been there). I suggest you read my other article which explains why you could have endometriosis or other problems and why you should seek advice from a doctor.

      https://healdove.com/reproductive-health/Severe-Pe...

    • profile image

      Ash 2 years ago

      Thanks

      I'm 16 and where I am its 3am I can't sleep and have been throwing up since 2 been doubled over a couple of times and I've had my periods for 7 years with out the slightest bit of pain and the bleeding only lasted for 2-3 days this time its different been bleeding for 9 days I've tried a couple of your suggestions but nothing seems to ease it.

      Is there something wrong

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 2 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for your input Kausar, always good to get more suggestions and more experiences that can be used by people new to reading this article.

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      Kausar from Pakistan 2 years ago

      My dear lady, if you knew how you've helped me today... I was diagnosed with pcos just over a day ago... Heart-twistin experience. And I never had pain in my periods because I never had cysts in my ovaries.

      Figures!

      Our diet consists of food which is least processed and :) that helps a lot, nobody's bingeing on crisps or biscuits or donuts or pasta or pizzas here :) LOL and fresh flatbreads are made daily.

      Where my country is going wrong is in the fast food consumption sector; and kfcs and local burgers with old oil fried fries (we love our fries A LOT) causing surge of diseases in my mum's+my generation...Obese girls can be seen here eating what's bad, Where are Superheroes when you need em!!!

      Okay here's a dollar and two cents :)

      No-No to blood thinners. Instead: Drinking 2 glasses of hot water JUST Completely relieves it. It's like a plunger or something. Awed.

      Lastly, NO PROBIOTICS or Activated Yeast Sachets for the gut. You'll cry to December if you take those while suffering from pcos... It causes multiple cysts to grow in both ovaries.

      And

      Trust your gut. Love!!!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 2 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Glad you found this article helpful JGV, and hope it helps you out next month.

    • profile image

      JGV 2 years ago

      This article has a lot of great info - took notes - this months wrath just passed but will be trying out some of these remedies next month! Here's hoping!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 3 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I do believe it is worth going back to your doctor if it is that bad. Many people struggle to get people to listen when they say how bad their period pains are because it is assumed they are just experiencing the normal period pains many women have. It really does require a lot of effort to make those people realise that your pain is extraordinary compared to normal period pains that other women experience. My advice would be to insist on seeing your doctor again and don't take no for an answer. I wish you good luck.

    • profile image

      Raechel 3 years ago

      I am 17, almost 18, an I have had cramps ever since I turned 14. They started out bad, but bearable, than one day I was getting ready and I about passed out, threw up, and had serious pain. I went to the hospital for them to tell me that I have ovarian cysts, but did not do the ultrasound. The pain does stop after painkillers and a heating pad, but I feel like the signs of the endometriosis is what I have. It burst to go to the bathroom the first day or two, I have breast pain, and I feel nauseous most of the time. I also go home from school almost at least once a month. Do you think it's worth seeing my doctor about again? And what if my parents don't elite be what I have I say? ( thy think I overreact sometimes)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 3 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Unfortunately Kate it isn't good for your body to artificially stop your periods altogether, so the wisdom in permanently preventing them in order to avoid the pain is not really a good move. Also many people actually do want to have children, so preventing periods is not even a viable option. If you haven't tried the Mefenamic Acid I would strongly suggest you do before interfering with nature to the degree the 'Lybrel' will do by the sound of things.

    • profile image

      Kate 3 years ago

      I only read half the comments, but I have to add: The MOST effective way to prevent this pain is a specific type of the pill; Lybrel. It stops you from having a period at all, which is the most fantastic thing ever. I'm thinking about going back on it just for that (I was on it as birth control before).

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi spond741. I am afraid I had to delete your comment because it included a link to your personal website which is therefore spamming my article. Feel free to post comments on hubs here at Hubpages, but please know it is considered very bad manners and is against the rules to use the comment boxes to promote your own hubs or other sites.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are very welcome Vacation Trip. I hope some of the advice or suggestions within this hub can help reduce your pains in future.

    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Thanks misty for sharing this very useful hub. Every month i suffer a lot will this period pain and i take a pain killing pill to stop the pain. Whatever that is, it feels horrible. Voted up and useful.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Victoria, interesting tips, not something I found personally, but everyone's experience is never going to be exactly the same :)

    • VictoriaSheffield profile image

      Author Victoria Sheffield 4 years ago from Georgia

      Great Hub!! Sweets and drinking anything cold makes them worse!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Britney, I see you already found this other article of mine (I didn't realise until after I commented back to you on my main one). I really hope at least one or two things on this list work for you, and I truly hope you follow the advice I have left you in my comment back to yours on the original article. Good Luck :)

    • profile image

      Britney 4 years ago

      Thank you for this article it has helped me a lot and I can't wait to try these methods. I've had severe and heavy periods since I was 13 and still have them till this day (18) It's terrible I spend hours and hours in agony till all these pain killers I take finally take care of it or so I think. It's nice to know I have a lot of other options to help me and I thank you for sharing this in your article I may come back and share what has happened later using your advice in your article

    • profile image

      Leasha 4 years ago

      Thanks for the idea :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      When it used to get really bad for me leasha, I used to mentally talk to my brain and concentrate really hard on telling it switch off the pain. I would visualise the actual pain signals the brain was sending stopping, and I would tell my brain I knew I was in pain and needed to do something, therefore it could stop 'telling me' now. Sounds daft I know, but it does help (or it did in my case). If you consider that pain is actually only a series of signals (kind of like electric pulses), that your brain processes and 'tells' you about, then it is reasonable to assume we are capable on some level of switching these off, or at least turning them down somewhat.

      You could also try focusing on getting your brain to release more endorphines (the bodies natural painkillers).

      I hope this helps until you can try some more of the other ideas here.

    • profile image

      leasha 4 years ago

      Hey just read your hub found some very interesting and useful ideas. I'm currently lying in bed in severe period pain, probably the worst I've ever had, but tried some of these methods and pretty much everything I can think of for the moment, just reading through everything in a desperate effort to distract myself. So I'm just asking, when you're in the moment of cramps having done everything you can think of is there any really effective ways you can think of to distract yourself and make the pain bearable until it eases or you have the opportunity to do something more?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Tiffanny. I do hope that before you resorted to anything up to 8 tablets a day of Naproxen you tried Mefenamic Acid, as one or two of those would usually be equally (if not more) effective and would not be a painkiller, but an anti-cramp medication. Based on your description of the level of pain you have experienced I would also recommend you read my other hub (linked to in the first paragraph of this one), just in case you have something else more serious going on that could potentially need treating.

    • tiffany delite profile image

      tiffany delite 5 years ago from united states

      this is a great hub! i, too, have suffered from horrendous, mind-blowing periods for the past 13 years. The only thing that I have been able to take to knock out the pain is Naproxen. Now, this is available over the counter (Aleve), but only in doses of 250mg. I have a prescription for 500mg, and I sometimes have to take up to 8 in one day (not recommended) just to manage the pain. I also have some muscle relaxers (Flexeril) that seem to help, if for nothing else, to put me to sleep! blessings!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks themadimadimadi, I am so pleased you found this helpful :)

    • themadimadimadi profile image

      Madison Gardiner. 5 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      You really covered EVERYTHING! I find drinking plenty of water, eating well, several ibuprofen and the fetal position will keep me at ease for a couple hours. The eventually they die down.

      Otherwise great article, this is really helpful for women! considering all of us get different severity of cramps, all of your suggestions are wonderful!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for sharing your experiences Miss Mac, I am glad you are not suffering nearly as much thesedays and I really appreciate you commenting to say how you achieved this :)

    • Missy Mac profile image

      Missy Mac 5 years ago from Illinois

      Thanks for writing this Hub. Actually, I have wanted to write on this topic, because my cycles were a Big issue. Doctors told me that this is what a woman goes thru. In some years, I would bleed throughout the month and suffer, anxiety, depression, pain, etc. After trial/error and research, I made drastic adjustments to my diet: I do not eat popcorn, hard shell tortillas, or any grainy hardshell foods. In addition, I started an exercise program and lost over 100 pounds. Unfortunately, my cycles brought junk food cravings. Today, I drink water, tea, and eat veggies included in a well balanced diet. Yes, I avoid reliance on pain pills, because it brought cramps or extra bleeding. However, certain days were unavoidable. What I am describing is only a fraction of the experience.

      Today, my cycles are normal 3 to 5 days. I experience cramping for the first two days. In addition, I no longer have large blood tissues. (Yesss, who00, that was another issue.) I experienced this, while attending college and teaching on the elementary level. Thanks again! I realized that many women experience difficulties during cycles.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I know exactly how you feel Peanutritious. I am 42 (about to turn 43), and cannot have children due the problems I describe in my other 'Period' Hub. I believe from my last AMH test that my ovarian reserve is virtually undetectable, and that from what I am told I am in 'Peri-menopause' (early stages of menopause). My periods are all over the place in recent months, sometimes one every two months, some of them very very light, others heavier. I don't know what to think any more other than being really depressed that I will probably never naturally conceive now as there are few or no eggs left to 'cheat' nature. The only good thing is that I rarely get any pain now, only very mild cramps compared to how they used to be.

    • Peanutritious profile image

      Tara Carbery 5 years ago from Cheshire, UK

      Hi Misty, great hub, was it aimed at me? I have always suffered from hideous periods, fainting, vomiting and worst of all the crazy mood swings! I am now prescribed Mefanamic acid which helps a lot. I need to carry them round with me throughout my period. I'm 40 and my period is now starting to come every 3 weeks so perhaps, i'm heading for the menopause. I've not had children, don't know if this means it will come quicker or not. My friend went through her menopause at 41. It got so bad at one point that I was actually considering a hysterectomy! It really is a curse that us girls have to put up with! It really helps talking about it though, you remember that you're not alone! Voted up and shared!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Sharkye11, thanks for that, and I hope the advice here saves many women going through the level I pain I went through for so many years. The other article I link to at the start of this one also shows how in my case it was more than just standard period pains, and I needed surgery as a result. In severe pain cases I do believe it is well worth getting further investigation done just in case there is more going on than just period cramps.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi ElleBee, thanks so much for sharing your experience of period cramps. I am glad yours are not too unbearable.

    • Sharkye11 profile image

      Jayme Kinsey 5 years ago from Oklahoma

      Very well written and informative article. Eliminating tampons can greatly relieve some of the discomfort, as can switching to chemical free, reusable cloth, sanitary napkins.

      You have given some great advice here that will hopefully be helpful to many girls and women. Sorry to hear that you had such a terrible experience and that the doctors did little to help.

    • profile image

      ElleBee 5 years ago

      INteresting tips - I'm lucky that overall I don't get too terrible of cramps. I usually get a day or where the cramps can be fairly severe, but they won't be severe all day. I will get a few waves of overwhelming cramp that have me doubled over and barely moving but they usually won't last more than 5 minutes and will only take place a couple of times over the course of 1, maybe 2 days. Caffeine and alcohol can definitely be a factor as you indicated!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Interesting, I have never heard that you can't take Mefenamic Acid and the pill at the same time, and in fact a woman I used to work with was on the pill and was prescribed Mefenamic Acid at the same time. I would get a second opinion on that if I were you.

      Try the methods I suggest on here, and if they don't work you need to read my other article linked to at the top of this one. It will go through some other possibilities. If all else fails get second opinions, and remember a lot of women have irregular periods, (it is not unusual), so your girlfriend may ultimately find she is better off with the irregular periods and not being on the pill, although you will need to find an alternative form of contraception. Double check on what you have been told about her not being able to take Mefenamic Acid and being on the pill at the same time though, (that doesn't sound right to me). If necessary ask a pharmacist as opposed to your doctor, (they are often far more highly trained and more knowledgeable than doctors).

    • profile image

      Koushick92 5 years ago

      I found this article quite informative and will show this to my girl friend.

      My problem is that my girlfriend has been having severe period pains which eventually lead her to take an ultrasound scan. They could not find anything.

      The doctors perscribed her on mefanamic acid and she claims it helped reduce the pains but it was hard for her.

      But since the ultrasound scan, the doctor has now perscribed her on the birth control pill to help regulate her periods but consequently she isn't supposed to take mefanamic acid in conjunction with the pill. It's been two days since she took her first pill and she claims that its been extremely hard without the mefanamic acid.

      Do you think she should take it anyway? If the list things here do not work then what should we do?

      It's worth noting that these pains were caused because she took the emergency contraceptive pill back February and her body reacted extremely badly to it; experiencing massive cramps and irregular periods.

      Please reply to me ASAP as I'm really worried about my girlfriends health especially when the ultrasound scan didn't find anything wrong with her.

      Many Thanks

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      So glad you found this helpful, I really hope you try some of the ideas in this hub because you may well be surprised at how many actually do work, e.g. the Magnesium tablets (a hot tip from a good friend of mine who actually works at a hospital in the Pharmacy area, and is a total expert in the field of drugs, blood etc etc).

    • FullOfLoveSites profile image

      FullOfLoveSites 5 years ago from United States

      The worst thing that could happen to a woman (especially when her period is irregular and she doesn't know when exactly her period falls) is being attacked by the painful period pains and cramps while she's going out or in a public place. Very uncomfortable indeed and she'd rather hide away from the crowd because of this.

      That's why I always bring my napkins, an ointment and some painkillers (mefenamic acid, always) when going out. Maybe I will try the pill as you suggested in hopes of reducing my cramps -- even before my period they also come, and are severely painful. I am surprised to know about bananas... I will eat those especially in times like those. Thanks for the very informative hub. :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      That is a very useful tip Lyn, thanks for sharing it here :)

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      Lyn 5 years ago

      While possibly not a cure for dysmenorrhea, I have found that I suffered from anaemia, as most women do . This causes large clots and increased total blood volume, which add pressure on the cervix. Taking iron, especially over this time normalizes flow, so there are no clots and results in a lighter period with no pain result. This may help some who have heavy bleeding, and I found it especially helpful during menopause for also controlling tiredness.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi 'Nothing Works,' I am not familiar with 'lortabs' so can't really say if they would be better than Magnesium or Mefenamic Acid tablets (which appear to be the most effective treatment for severe period pain normally). I am assuming you have already tried these based on your comment?

      When you say you 'went to the doctors and you don't have endometriosis or cysts' do you mean that your normal doctor referred you to a specialist who told you this, or was it your regular doctor told you this? If it was the latter then I would insist on being referred to a specialist before being convinced that one or both of these conditions are not responsible for your level of pains. If a specialist told you this, then I would recommend a second opinion. If after all of this the answer is the same, then it may just be something as simple as the way your body processes pain signals, not much help, but not something that can be cured either. I don't know how old you are now, but if you are still below your mid early twenties, then there is a good chance the levels of period cramp pain you experience will diminish over the next few years, as they do tend to be at their worst in your teens and early twenties.

      I hope there is a solution for you or answers to be discovered.

      Good Luck

    • profile image

      Nothing works 5 years ago

      I have read all of your articles and nothing seems to work. I have tried medication, I have gone to the doctors, and I don't have Endometriosis, cysts, or anything else that can explain my severe cramping. I have had a doctor go so far as to prescribe lortabs for the pain. I have had my period since I was 9 hrs old and the way my family history is, I won't go through menopause until I am in my 60's. Now I am finding it hard to have children, and I am no closer to having any answers than I was when I was in my teens.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Erin, that is handy if they will give it to you and not just pack you off telling you to take a Paracetamol like they tend to with so many people.

    • profile image

      ERIN 5 years ago

      GO TO THE E.R. FOR A SHOT OF TORIDOL & PHENERGAN FOR SEVERE CRAMPS AND PMS PAIN, ALSO WORKS FOR OVARIAN CYST PAIN.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for the apology Elsa, it is just worth knowing that it is against TOS to post links without permission (it is a common mistake on HP, and usually made by newbies). I tell you what, if you post a link to a hub you have written on this I will read it and possibly allow it on this occasion because you have been decent enough to come back and explain the situation more fully :)

      Next time you might want to consider just mentioning the name of the product, and that you have written a hub on it or something. People can then choose to come to your pages to read about it more by clicking on your name.

    • Elsa-s Blend profile image

      Elsa-s Blend 5 years ago from Orlando Florida and Jamaica

      Elsa's Blend is not just about promoting a product, it is about Helping other women like myself who suffered from or has been in that constant fight month after month. It's a herb created by God, not my invention but something I would like to make convenient for the women all over the world.

    • Elsa-s Blend profile image

      Elsa-s Blend 5 years ago from Orlando Florida and Jamaica

      That is ok, I wasn't just self promoting this herb I was trying to help individuals suffering from menstrual cramps and that was most important. Sorry if I offended you.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry Elsa, self promotion through linking in other people's hub comments is against the TOS of Hubpages (at least without asking the permission of the Hub author.) I had to delete your comment therefore.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are welcome yashika, I hope they help you out :)

    • profile image

      yashika 5 years ago

      thanxx for ol there facts nd advises!!!

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry Jim, you would at least have to back up your link with a valid reason for posting it before I would allow it on my hub, otherwise it is just spam.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Natasha, glad you liked this and found it useful. I can't answer your question about the magnesium, simply because this is the medical recommendation, so a doctor can explain the reasoning behind it better than I can.

    • profile image

      Natasha 5 years ago

      Wonderful and informative article. Definitely bookmarking. Also, why shouldn't you take magnesium longer than two days? Wondering because I have before.

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Good Luck lalala, and don't forget to try the Mefenamic Acid as this works superbly for so many, and I am eternally grateful to the woman who first gave me a couple of hers to try when no-one had offered me these beforehand.

    • profile image

      lalala 5 years ago

      i am so trying this cause the pain is just horrible . i went to a doctor last month to see if they can help me and they just gave me painkillers which did not work!!!. your remedies sound interesting i will give them a try

      thanks [:

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi fizz, what you describe sounds perfectly normal, and the first couple of days are often very heavy on bleeding. Being moody is also common (think Pre-menstrual tension, only in some cases it makes you depressed instead of irritable). Many women are a little bloated at the time of their period, but this is only fluid retention so it is nothing to worry about and will soon go once their period is finished.

      I hope this has put your mind at ease :)

    • profile image

      fizz 5 years ago

      When I have my aunt flow I have pains a few days before

      And two days into my cycle

      The first day is light until later

      In the day anyway what I wanted to ask is is it normal to have heavy blood in the toilet for first two days also I feel really depressed crying about everything and feeling sooooo fat

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for the faublous comment Stacey, it is so nice to get such in depth feedback, and it is great that you took the time to write it. If you are having period pains as bad as you describe I honestly do suggest you also read my other article as there may be something else going on too, and it may be something that effects your ultimate ability to conceive (as I found out to my cost). The article is linked to in this one, and I warn you now, it has had literally hundreds of comments, so you might want to make sure you are well rested before reading it ;)

    • profile image

      @TraceyStarks 5 years ago

      What an article! I actually fell asleep reading it and woke up to finish all the comments!

      To the person who needed help talking to her dad... My dad didn't believe me either, it took me missing fun field trips in school and him having to pick me up, while being wheelchaired out!!! Embarrassing, yes, needed, absolutely. Most men won't understand but maybe you could ask him: "What animal (we are mammals) do you know that can bleed for five or more days and not die?"

      Women are amazing for the pain we can bear... Because even though once a month I go through immense pain, I've now had it for 18 years and I'm still alive! (and thanks to Period Tracker I know when that will be)

      I found the fetal position works, but if I move or don't concentrate on my breathing pattern, I have to try another remedy, but I've done this almost first since starting my period (at age 11).

      My pain is by far the worse in my family and I'm almost envious and jealous of girls who can shove a tampon up there and just be comfortable all day. For me a tampon is only for photoshoots or something REALLY important where a diaper pad doesn't seem appropriate. Which sucks when I'm trying to be sexy for my man.

      Thankfully I found a love that helps me instead of scared or mean.

      I thank you for your article and comments. As I do not like Eastern medicine, too many recalls (Yaz anyone?) I do not take birth control - I was on depo as an older teenager, but know one told me the side effects. :( but I'm almost 30 and want to have babies. I've never had an abortion (and do not judge those that have, had or will) but I believe that anything removed medically that doesn't HAVE to be, could drastically change your insides.

      I do not like that people can so easily choose Phx drugs for cramps (docs have tried to prescribe me Vicodin, Percocets and more) :(

      I wish the Internet was so readily available when I was a child - Western/Herbal medicine is amazing. Look for the remedies of China... They have been naturally healing since before Christ!

      Thank you for article, I know my pains will be here, but it makes me feel better just knowing I do not suffer alone. Now let me get back to my heating pad! :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks ladeda, Mefenamic Acid saved my sanity I swear. I just wish it had been suggested to me years earlier by my doctors.

    • ladeda profile image

      ladeda 5 years ago

      These are great suggestions. I'm definitely going to look into this Mefenamic Acid stuff, it sounds amazing!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Don,

      The warmth from your hands could have helped I am sure, but alternatively you might be a natural 'healer' and not know it.

      Thanks for the comment :)

    • Don Fairchild profile image

      Don Fairchild 5 years ago from Belgrade, ME

      This might sound a bit out there, my wife used to suffer from period cramps before she had a hysterectomy. In the same category of the hot water bottle. I used to warm her abdomen by covering her with my large warm hands. She felt that the warm calming effect worked almost immediately. I was glad to help her get over this monthly pain.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      That's a new one on me MissionImpossible, but whatever works is worth doing :)

    • profile image

      MissionImpossible 5 years ago

      I actually found a cold or room temperature water bottle works well too.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry reader, I just don't know the answer to this at all. This is something a doctor needs to check out (again), or you need to get a second opinion if you are not happy with what your own doctor has already told you. I know quite a lot about solving period pains and some causes of extreme period pains, but what you are describing is well into the realm of gynecology and you need a medically qualified professional to answer these questions.

      The only advice I can give you is to return to your doctor and describe the swelling, pain and itching etc, and get him to advise you or treat you for it.

      Good Luck on this.

    • profile image

      reader 5 years ago

      my period has stop. its already passed two weeks and still not having peroid. sometime my stomach ache and after eating something i feel like vomiting but not really vomiting. i went to clinic and he give me injection and medicine and tolde me it will help me to have period.. is it really true. i am afraid of the medicine and injection what if they came with side effect. :(( and another thing before four days i had sex with my hubby and unfortunetly the condom broke an spam goes in. we r so much worried. we don't want baby now. what can i do now? any immidiate solution ???

      and nowadays i feel like my vagina is swelling and itching even i bath daily and change innerwear everyday. i feel like wanting sex all the time but after i had sex i feel like pain inside my vagina. and my hubby also can see the sweling.

      today i did ultra sound but docter says no baby. he recommed me not to be worried. i need your help for my problems. i like the way you response and heal us. keep it up.

      your reader,

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi gurl, firstly don't worry about the missed period, this happens occasionally to lots of woman, usually when they are over tired, run down, stressed, over exercising (fitness freaks) or as your doctor said 'if their hormones are changing'. Generally the period will return as normal the following month or within a couple of months.

      As for your belly, well it might just be a case it needs toning up, in which case doing 30 sit ups every day (making sure to use your stomach muscles rather than your back to lift yourself up) should help to tone this up. Otherwise have a visit to your local gym and speak to the staff for advice. I am assuming your doctor showed no concern over this, and it doesn't seem likely it is anything else causing the problem!

    • profile image

      gurl 5 years ago

      i am 21, married girl also i am studying and want to continue my study. so before 3 months i did abortion and then my period start in continue until last month but not this month. yesterday i and my husband went to clinic to check up and doctor says i am not pregnant. he told me just maybe because of hormonal change. then what is the matter? i am so much afraid. why this kinda things happen?

      and another things, after my belly is like hanging from my body even though i am not fat? i am not in good shape. what is the reason behind this? i don't want fat tommy?

      plz help

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Gianna, well I have never heard of cold making it worse, nor have I heard of rumbling noises. I would strongly suggest you read the other article I wrote linked to in the first paragraph of this one though, as this covers other reasons why you might be experiencing such extreme pains.

      Good Luck :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Ronnie,

      Thanks for the lovely compliments, I was once told by a nurse I should become one, (this was when I was nursing my dying first Husband in hospital). It isn't the vocation for me though, I prefer to write and to grow vegetables. This suits me better :)

    • profile image

      Gianna 5 years ago

      My period pains are so bad right now I can't even get up to try one of the suggestions. That's how bad it hurts. Could being cold worsen cramps?? I feel like it gets worse when the heats on low in my house. I'm 18 and I've had my period for 4 years but I don't think it ever got this bad. I also wanted to know if rumbles (like in the stomach when you are hungry) near my ovaries are normal too? What could cause it? I've been having those I think since I started my period. I never know why they happen it would be really nice to finally be able to know why. Just out of curiosity, you know? Again I am in so much pain my ovaries feel like someones stabbing them right now!=((( please help

    • profile image

      R. J. Lefebvre 5 years ago

      Cindy,

      You may have a doctors certification by hard knocks; you are extroadinary in what is going on and how to deal with it based on personal experience. At the very least, I can't help thinking registered nurses would welcome you with open arms. Your one in a million on this earth.

      Ronnie

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      If you read my other article ( the link is in the first paragraph of this one) it explains better about cysts on ovaries. Essentially we have cysts every month that burst naturally, but if they don't and they keep growing they sometimes have to be surgically removed. Many of them will still burst before it gets to this stage, although they may be quite enlarged by the time they do. Cysts on the ovaries can cause bad pains. The other article will explain in more detail.

      I suspect you might get a clay heat pad from Amazon or Ebay, but otherwise try a Google search and they should come up.

      Good Luck.

    • profile image

      Help! 5 years ago

      I was wondering were u would find a clay heat pad because hot water bottles don't seem to help. Also I went to the docs cause of severe paun and did an ultra sound and I got the info back saying there was water in my ovaries meaning probley an cyst popped. What does this mean.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      The help is already here Amanda, there are loads of suggestions in the list, you just have to try them until you find one or more that work for you. If the problem is immediate try the warm bath and go to bed with a hot water bottle, but as soon as you can go to a Doctor and try the Mefenamic Acid tablets (they seem to work best). Also ask your Mum or a friend to pop to the chemist or the health food shop and buy some magnesium tablets as these too are meant to stop period pains extremely effectively.

      Before next month try to look at some of the other suggestions on the list and stock up on certain things if necessary, e.g. bananas.

      Good Luck

    • profile image

      Amanda 5 years ago

      I can't sleep because it hurts so much. I tried the fetal position but it eased it just a little. Im only 14 and it hurts really bad. I have not tried the banana thing or the water bottle or warm bath but it won't stop hurting long enough for me to go back to sleep. Please help!

    • profile image

      Jessica (again) 5 years ago

      I also wanted to say thank you, I've been reading all of the comments and I've learned so much! I often feel like I can't talk to my friends about my period or other issues.And for the most part, I feel like a little kid because of how little I know. Out of all of my friends, I'm the only virgin, so I get left out of some conversations. And as I mentioned before, I can't really talk to my dad about these things as well. My first cyst made me bleed for 3 months straight, and it wasn't a light flow either. (And as a side note, I only wish I had a light flow, mine are always heavy.) My father didn't believe me, and I had my friend's mom take me to the doctor. But anyway, I just wanted to add how thankful I am to be able to read your articles and your comments.

      Thanks,

      Jessica

    • profile image

      Jessica 5 years ago

      Thank you so much for your articles! I'm going through some pretty rough cramps right now, but sadly I have to say I had to take oxy (from a past surgery, and yes, I know that's REALLY bad to do.) to help me through it. And reading your aticles helped me take my mind off of the cramps. I think I'm going to make an appointment with my doctor. Although it's hard because my dad doesn't believe in how bad my craps get, even when I'm puking because of the pain. His only response is "you're not the only girl with cramps in the world." I was wondering if you had any advice to how to talk to my dad about the pain? I had a cyst about 6 years ago and I think I may have one again, although it's completely different than before which is why he doesn't believe me. I'm 20 years old, but I'm still under my dad's insurance so what ever he says goes. Any advice would be awesome.

      Thanks,

      Jessica

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Ronnie, I learned a lot from my own experiences and research, (as well as some good basic qualifications in sciences from my years in education).

      Cindy

    • profile image

      R. J. Lefebvre 5 years ago

      Cindy,

      I'm not in the least envious of you, and I'm not a women; but your medical know-how (limited bur sharp)is like a doctor and a scholar (we can all learn from you). Male or female!

      Ronnie

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      She could just be one of those people who wouldn't have suffered anyway though shorty72, as lots of girls don't, and I don't really recall many girls at school ever complaining about severe period pains other than me. Not all families even have the same problem and this is why so many Mothers (who never had severe pain themselves) tend to dismiss their daughters complaints about severe period pains as them 'over reacting' (you can see more of this in the comments section of my other article on the subject of period pains). I am not really convinced that a multivitamin tablet contributed to her lack of period pains to date, although in general she may be healthier as a result.

      It is worth bearing in mind that not all severe period pains begin until 2 or 3 years into having periods, so she may still develop them in time to come, (although I hope not for her sake).

      Thanks for your great feedback :)

    • profile image

      shorty72 5 years ago

      My daughter has recently started her period in the last 2 years and she doesn't suffer with period pain. I put this done to the multivitamin she has been taking since she was 5. I wish I knew this when I was growing up it would have been so much easier.

      Great hub

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Maria, I can't allow your comment to appear due to the nature of the question you asked, but the answer to the question is 'no' it will not prevent you getting pregnant and will do you no harm whatsoever.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I have experienced the 'unable to stand up straight' level of pain many times, and the only thing that really worked was Mefenamic Acid tablets, plus warm baths + hot water bottles on my abdomen. I strongly suggest you try these, and if you haven't got Mefenamic Acid tablets now, get some as soon as you can through your Doctor. In the short term I can only suggest you try as many of the suggestions in this article as you can, because one or more of them should help you to some degree.

    • profile image

      bobbi.wells(girl) 5 years ago

      my cramps are so bad that i can't even stand up straight..it feels so awful so i need a really good solution..fastt..

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Removing the ovaries would probably work, but what an extreme length to go to, and I doubt many surgeons would perform the surgery unless it was due to a life threatening condition. Apart from anything else you would be putting yourself into the menopause early, and would have to rule out having any further children of your own unless you had frozen eggs at an earlier time.

      This is not a route I would recommend taking.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for sharing that information here coffeewrite, I guess the doctors tend to forget that most medicines originated from herbal ones, and were simply developed into stronger drugs over time.

    • profile image

      Abcdeomgthepainissobadicantconcentrateanymore 5 years ago

      Isn't the only sure-fire way to get rid of cramps to have your ovaries removed? Just asking

    • thecoffeewrite profile image

      Keneesha M Hodge 5 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

      When a friend of mine told me about Peppermint tea, mixed with some honey and a Vanilla I could of kissed her and her grandmother for giving her the recipe. The first time I drank the mix it was tasty and it worked so quick I wasn't even half finished before my cramps went bye bye. The only problem was I had gas for a while afterwards. Medicine may have to deny natural remedies for bottom line purposes, but they can't deny what people experience from using them. Now I drink Rooibos and Green teas both mixed with the herb Ganoderma and that also offers quick pain relief.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Maree, thanks ever so much for commenting. Well I know exercise during your period is supposed to help, but I can't say for sure if exercise in general would. Possibly it could because a fit body may cope better with the pains, but honestly I have no known reason to back this supposition up. It certainly can't do any harm, so I would suggest to a person who gets extreme period pains, they would have nothing to lose from getting fit in general to see if it works for them.

    • profile image

      Maree 5 years ago

      Thanks for the great advice misty, and also for taking the time to reply to people's questions individually. It's been really helpful.

      I've had my period for a few years now and always experienced really bad pain. Last year I started a full time dance course which meant I was dancing for several hours a day and found that I no longer suffered pain at all. I've had time off over Christmas though and for the first time in a year got really bad pain when my period came.

      I know there have been inconclusive studies done, but could it be possible that an increase in exercise not during your period, but overall, may help with monthly pain?

      Just thought I'd put it out there - it seems to have worked for me.

      Thanks again :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry to hear that shada, try easy foods like soup which are little effort to eat or digest. Other than that I can only suggest you try the suggestions on this list until you hit on one that works for you.

      Good Luck

    • profile image

      shada 5 years ago

      im in so much pain and when i ate i`m vomiting it back out what to do?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are very welcome KayG, keep on trying things or combinations of things from the list until you find what works for you. Different things work for different people.

      Good Luck with your exams, and don't forget to consider the Mefenamic Acid as a possibility during exam time. It is prescription only, but is incredibly effective and is not a painkiller.

    • profile image

      Kay.G 5 years ago

      Hi! I'm 16 yrs old and I had my period for 4 yrs now. From the start I have always been experiencing quite painful cramps and the painkillers just won't work.Due to this I have to leave from school because I would faint or vomit because of the pain or wake up like that and stay home cause I wouldn't be able to move. I just read this article and I wanted to say thanks because I am going to try some of the things you mentioned such as the herbal tea, hot water bottle, drinks more water and also have a diet with magnesium and zinc. I was kinda worried since I have several important exams coming up and I wouldn't want to risk not going or fail because I wasn't concentrated enough. Thanks a lot for the help misty !

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for sharing your tips here Camo Girl :)

    • profile image

      Camo Girl!!! 5 years ago

      Hey, Well I Am 17 And I Have Had My Period For About 4yrs Now I Take Hot Showers Or I Drink Hot Tea When I Get Cramps It Works!!!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Try including Magnesium in your diet as much as you can. I have just recently heard that Magnesium is very effective at controlling period pains. If you can get it naturally from food that is great, but if this is going to be difficult see if you can buy it in tablet form from the health food shop instead. It is non-prescription so should be easy to obtain.

      Good luck

    • profile image

      snooker 5 years ago

      hey , nice article... i experience severe pain on the first wo days .. which is crippling sometimes... i am not too keen on pills and contraceptives.. im 21.. the problem is controlling my diet.. i tend to skip meals as i have a hectic schedule.. and my diet is full of carbs mostly...i don't cook my on food... what do you suggest...