The Office On Women’s Health (OWH) reports that as much as 90 percent of women experience some level of premenstrual syndrome, and for some, it’s so bad that it interferes with daily life. Here’s another fun fact: if you’re in your 30s, you may have thought that a lot of the not-so-fun part of being a hormonal woman was over, but that’s around the age when the OWH says women experience the most PMS. There’s some mental comfort in knowing that what you’re going through isn’t out of the ordinary, but it certainly doesn’t relieve the physical discomfort of period cramps. Any woman who experiences cramps knows what a debilitating sensation that can be. Men might think, “Cramps? Like, what I get in my leg after a jog?” They have no idea what it feels like to have your uterus shed its lining.
While you can turn to over-the-counter pain relievers, you might want to go the more holistic route if you’ve learned of the possible long-term side effects of taking ibuprofen and similar painkillers. The good news is that womankind has a lot of experience in treating this particular ailment. After all, Advil and Midol weren’t always around, so our female ancestors had to be creative, and passed down some of their techniques. Here are natural ways to alleviate period cramps.
You’ve likely been told to apply a hot compress to muscle pain in the past, and it can be helpful to use on your lower abdomen when you have period cramps. As one gynecologist explains it, the heat distracts other nerve pathways involved in pain. If you don’t have a hot compress, you can fill up a water bottle with hot water (not too hot), or you can soak a towel in hot water, and put that in a plastic bag.