Your Complete Guide To Menstrual Cramps

yoga bow pose can help with menstrual cramps relief

Yoga poses, like this one, can really help! | Source: Shutterstock

1) Over-the-counter Pain Relief
Ibuprofen is your best friend, and is much more effective than naproxen sodium. (Think Advil over Tylenol.) Carry it with you at all times! When you know you’re due for your period, take some ibuprofen at night before bed, so that you don’t wake up in agony. If you’re looking for relief in the middle of intense cramp pain, it’s generally okay to take three pills instead of the recommended two, but definitely check with your doctor first.

2) Yoga
Believe it or not, there are specific yoga poses aimed at relieving menstrual cramps, like the cobra and the bow pose. These poses target the pelvis and the lumbar region, two muscular groups that often bear the brunt of soreness and tension during period pain. Googling “yoga for cramps” gets you a wide range of exercises and instruction videos, so you can choose what works best for you, or ask a yoga teacher for advice.

3) Hot Water Bottles
Yep, the same kind your Grandma uses for her back pain. Hot water bottles may seem old-fashioned, but they really, truly help warm and relax the muscles in your lower abdomen. At about $15, it’s a worthy investment that will bring you relief month after month.

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  • Judith

    I too used to have really horrendous period pains throughout my teens and until I went on ‘the pill’. Some things that helped me: cycling (especially up hills); rowing (or sitting on the floor and using rowing movements to stretch the abdomen and thighs); Vitamin B6; hot water bottle to the stomach; Feminax (when eventually that was produced). If very severe pains continue over the years they should be reported to a doctor for possible investigation in case of a medical condition eg fibroids or endometriosis.