It’s that time of the month, and once again you have to go through the ordeal of heavy bleeding, mood swings, bloating, headache and other body pains. But above all these, the soul-ripping feeling you get from a menstrual cramp is unfathomable. Menstrual cramp, medically known as Dysmenorrhea, occurs due to contraction of the uterus during the process of shedding off it’s endometrial lining (uterine wall). Ranging from a mild to terrible one, most women suffer from the pangs of menstrual cramps.There are a number of home remedies that will give you relief from menstrual pain, without having to depend on painkillers. For your menstrual cramps, try using some of the home remedies listed below, for instant relief from menstrual cramps.
1. Heat Treatment for menstrual cramps
You must have heard your grandmothers suggesting you this during those days of the month. Well, this home remedy really does wonders to your uterine muscles. Studies have reported that this simple treatment relaxes your contracting muscles by increasing tissue elasticity and gives instant relief from menstrual cramps. You can use a hot water bag or a disposable heating pad, or simply use a hot water bottle.
How to apply heat?
Apply the heating pad on your lower abdomen area, where you are feeling the most discomfort. It is always recommended to apply heat through the outside of your clothing rather than applying directly on your skin. Do this 3-4 times a day during your periods and get instant relief from menstrual pain. Another option for getting relief from menstrual cramps is to take a warm water bath with some Epsom salt, which will relax your abdomen, lower back, and legs.
Another option to get instant relief from menstrual cramps is to take a warm water bath with some Epsom salt, which will relax your abdomen, lower back, and legs.
2. Sesame oil – A massage therapy for menstrual cramps
This is another simple yet effective home remedy for your menstrual cramps. Sesame oil is rich in linoleic acid and has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory property. Gently massage your lower abdomen in a soft circular motion using sesame oil when you are menstruating heavily.
Adding essential oils
Using an essential oil along with sesame oil can give quicker results as they give you a calming effect. You can use a blend of lavender, lemon and peppermint oil. The soothing aroma of these oils relaxes your mind and induces sleep.
3. Fennel seeds
Fennel seeds can be an effective companion during your periods. A study published in the Journal of Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology also showed a reduction in the intensity of nausea and weakness while giving relief from early menstrual pain.
General tip for usage
Fennel seeds form an excellent combination with water for instant relief from menstrual cramps. Soak 30 grams of fennel seeds overnight in water and drink it the next morning. The antioxidant property of fennel seeds relaxes your lower abdomen muscles and helps you during severe menstrual pain.
4. Cumin seeds
The anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic properties of cumin seeds make it an excellent home remedy to get rid of menstrual cramps. You can directly chew the seeds or combine it with an equal amount of sugar which acts as a savior for your taste buds. Or a more effective way is to boil some of these seeds in water and drink them twice or thrice per day.
Another way of adding cumin seeds to your diet is by frying them with jaggery in a ratio 2:1 forming a bolus, which can be used as a home-made pill. These pills can be taken 1-3 days prior to your expected menstrual date.
5. Chamomile tea
A study conducted in 2012 showed that Chamomile tea increases Glycine levels in your body, which reduces muscle spasms and acts as a nerve relaxant as well. The tea has flavonoids that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties which help in curbing the prostaglandins running through your veins and gives relief from menstrual cramps.
Tip for usage
You will need a chamomile tea bag, 1 cup of hot water and a teaspoon of honey. Soak the tea bag in the hot water cup for 10 minutes and allow it to cool. Then add a teaspoon of honey to it. Drink this mixture 2-3 times daily during your periods and get effectual relief from menstrual cramps.
6. Ginger Root – Healing herb for menstrual cramps
This healing herb has a lot of benefits for your body and serves as a natural medicine for treating menstrual cramps and giving you instant relief. It lowers the prostaglandin levels in your body which are known to cause severe menstrual pain, and also help to combat other problems like PMS (Pre-Menstrual Syndrome) and irregular periods. Just add some grated ginger in hot water, followed by a teaspoon of honey and a pinch of salt. Drink it 2-3 times daily for best results.
7. Aloe Vera juice – An elixir for menstrual cramps
We all are aware of the miraculous benefits of this wonder drink. Its anti-inflammatory properties help in improving the blood flow, thereby reducing the intensity of menstrual pain. A freshly prepared Aloe Vera juice mixed with a small teaspoon of honey is an elixir for women suffering from monthly menstrual cramps. You need to start drinking this juice at least once a day before your period begins.
8. Neem leaves
The anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory quality of neem leaves make it an excellent combo for giving instant relief from menstrual cramps. It also helps in curing vaginal yeast infection and keeps bacteria at bay.
Collect 7-10 neem leaves and grind it properly. Then mix the paste with a little amount of water and take it orally with buttermilk every day.
9. Do some gentle exercise
This sounds somewhat crazy, right? How would someone even think of exercising in such dying pain? But I am talking about some gentle body movements which will definitely relieve you of that soul-breaking menstrual cramp. Exercise enhances the endorphin levels which lowers the prostaglandin levels racing through your bloodstream.
Ten minutes of shabasana (the corpse pose) increases blood circulation to your pelvic region and relaxes your uterine muscles to some extent. Even gently bending or lifting your knees while lying on your back will also help. A daily routine of light exercise and yoga is the best medication for menstrual cramps.
Acupressure helps to stimulate certain points of your body by applying pressure gently on those areas, which renders relief to menstrual cramps. Your foot also has a pressure point that is located about three finger widths above your ankle bone. You can gently massage on this area using your fingers and get instant relief.
11. Water – A great tonic for menstrual cramps
‘Drink plenty of water every day!’ This common refrain is used by our elders every now and then. But do we really drink this tonic in adequate amounts? Water has umpteen benefits on our body, and the right amount of water intake can keep a number of diseases at bay.
During the menstrual period, your body becomes easily dehydrated, which exasperates menstrual cramps. So you are advised to drink 5-8 glasses of water during this period. Hot water is more preferable as it increases your blood flow. This soothes your uterine muscles and gives you great relief from menstrual pain.