Dysmenorrhea (lower abdominal throbbing or cramping) is a common symptom of menstruation. During and before menstruation, many women experience menstrual cramps.
Discomfort can be merely irritating for some women. Menstrual cramps can be so severe for some women that they are unable to function normally for a few days each month.
Endometriosis or uterine fibroids can cause painful menstruation and subsequent cramps. Reducing pain requires addressing the underlying cause. Menstrual cramps that aren’t the result of another medical problem usually become better with time and disappear completely after delivery.
Menstrual cramps, what are they?
Menstrual cramps and agony are medically referred to as dysmenorrhea. Primary dysmenorrhea and secondary dysmenorrhea are the two forms.
The term “primary dysmenorrhea” refers to recurring menstrual cramps that are not caused by other disorders. A few days before your period or when you begin to bleed, you may begin experiencing pain. Lower abdominal, back, or thigh discomfort is common. It can be mild to severe, depending on the location.
Nausea, vomiting, exhaustion, and even diarrhea are possible side effects that can last anywhere from 12 to 72 hours. As you become older, your menstrual cramps may become less severe, and they may stop altogether if you become pregnant.
Secondary dysmenorrhea refers to painful periods that are caused by an infection or disease of the female reproductive organs. Secondary dysmenorrhea is more severe and lasts longer than regular menstrual cramps since it occurs earlier in the cycle. Nausea, vomiting, tiredness, or diarrhea are not common side effects.
What Causes Cramping During Menstrual Cycle?
1. Primary dysmenorrhoea
Primary dysmenorrhoea is caused by the body’s production of natural substances known as prostaglandins.
For example, prostaglandins are involved in inflammation and digestion. They’re also in charge of the uterine muscles’ contractions (tensing and relaxing) (womb).
Your menstrual fluid is made from the uterus’s lining being torn away by this muscle pain. Although the contractions are forceful and painful in cases of period pain, blood flow is reduced.
In women who suffer from primary dysmenorrhoea, the contractions are more intense because of an increase in the amounts of prostaglandins.
Because of this, it is not clear why some women have higher or lower Progesterone Therapy levels than others.
2. Secondary dysmenorrhoea
Secondary dysmenorrhoea is the term used by doctors to describe another type of period pain.
Endometriosis, adenomyosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, or fibroids are among the reproductive disorders that might induce this type of painful period.
When a woman’s reproductive system is infected, she is suffering from endometriosis. As the name suggests, this occurs when cells that normally line the uterus appear elsewhere in the body.
When cells that ordinarily line the uterine lining begin to proliferate within the uterine muscle wall, the condition is known as adenomyosis.
An infection in the vagina can extend to the reproductive organs, resulting in pelvic inflammatory disease. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are the most common causes.
In the uterus, fibroids are non-cancerous growths or lumps of muscular tissue.
It is possible that addressing the underlying problem may be necessary for treating secondary dysmenorrhea, where period discomfort is a symptom of something more serious. “
Symptoms of Menstrual Pain
In addition to lower abdominal cramps, you may also have some of the following symptoms:
- Inflammation of the low back
- Spreading down the lower limbs
- Mood swings
- Distressing practices (in extreme cases)
Your healthcare practitioner will inquire about your medical history to determine painful periods. Physical and pelvic examinations are part of the process. You might also do:
- Ultrasound: Internal organs can be visualized using high-frequency sound waves.
- MRI: In order to provide detailed images of organs and structures inside the body, a computer and massive magnets are used in this examination.
- Laparoscopy: A laparoscope is used in this simple surgery. Medical professionals use this device to examine the pelvis and abdomen. In some cases, abnormalities may be discovered.
- Hysteroscopy: The cervix and the uterus are examined in this test. A hysteroscope is inserted into the vagina to view the uterus.
Menstrual cramps can be eased by your doctor recommending:
- Analgesics: These are drugs that reduce pain. Taking ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, etc.) or naproxen sodium (Aleve) at regular doses the day before your period begins can help alleviate the pain of cramps, as long as you don’t overdose. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines can also be purchased over the counter. As soon as you begin experiencing symptoms, begin taking the pain reliever, and continue taking it for two to three days, or until your symptoms subside.
- Contraception with hormones: Preventing ovulation and reducing the severity of menstrual cramps are the primary benefits of oral contraceptives. You can also get these hormones by an intrauterine device or an intradermal patch or an implant implanted under your arm’s skin, as well as an injection (IUD).
- Surgery: Your menstrual cramps may be alleviated by surgery to treat an underlying condition such as endometriosis or fibroids. A hysterectomy may also be an option if other treatments fail to alleviate your symptoms and you are not planning on having children.
Menstrual Pain Prevention
These methods can help alleviate the discomfort of menstrual cramps:
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Smoking is bad for your health.
- Don’t drink too much alcohol.
- Maintain a regular exercise regimen.
Menstrual cramps are a common phenomenon during the menstrual cycle. Pain and discomfort can be alleviated by a variety of treatments.
If the symptoms are severe or occur at other times in the month, it is a good idea to see a Gynecologist doctor.
1. How can vitamins help relieve the discomfort of menstruation?
Taking vitamin B1 or magnesium supplements might help, but there’s not enough evidence to back them up as viable options for relieving period pain.
2. When does menstrual cramping start?
Symptoms of primary dysmenorrhea begin as soon as a girl reaches the age of puberty. As women with primary dysmenorrhea get older, their periods tend to become less painful. When a woman has given birth, this type of period pain may also improve.
3. Can the IUD be used for painful periods?
Yes, it is also can be useful to treat painful periods. In several women using an IUD, menstrual bleeding gets lighter the longer the IUD is in place. In some women, it is good to stop bleeding.