A menstrual pain, which is known as dysmenorrhea, is a painful feeling that is felt in the lower abdomen. This usually happens before or during menstrual period. The pain can be dull and annoying or severe and extreme. The menstrual cramps takes place after an egg is released from the ovaries and goes down the fallopian tube. Emotional stress can also increase the chances of experiencing menstrual cramps.

There are two types of painful periods

  1. Primary dysmenorrhea: this is the most common type and it is identified by the pain that occur in the lower abdomen and it starts 1-2 days before the period and can last from two to four days. There is no basic issue that is causing the pain.
  2. Secondary dysmenorrhea:this is identified by cramping pains that are as a result of a medical issue like pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids.

Causes of menstrual pain

During a menstrual period, when there is no sperm to fertilize the egg, the uterus contracts to dismiss its lining. This process is caused by the release of hormone like material called prostaglandins, which is linked to inflammation and pain on a serious level. The uterine contractions results to most of the pain a lady feels during menstrual pains because the contractions clogs the blood flow the lining of the uterus. Materials known as leukotrienes, are increased during menstruation and may also cause menstrual cramps.

Symptoms of menstrual pains include

  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Dull, throbbing pain in the lower abdomen
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Loose stools
  • Constipation
  • Lightheadedness

Home remedies for menstrual pain


Heat helps to relax the muscles in the uterus. The easiest way to control menstrual pain is to apply heat on the lower abdomen. Apply a heating pad on the lower part of your abdomen and lower back. You can use a plastic bottle filled with water. Apply the heat until you feel comfortable. You can also soak towel in water, squeeze out the excess water and heat it in the microwave for a minute. Place it in the abdomen until the towel cools down. Repeat the process every few minute until you stop feeling the pain. Taking a hot shower can also aid in relieving the pain.

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Ginger is an amazing herb that can cure menstrual pains effectively. It lowers the levels of pain causing prostaglandins and also helps fight fatigue that is identified with premenstrual syndrome and it can also makes irregular periods regular. Mash a tiny piece of ginger, boil it in a cup of water for 5 minutes, strain and add little honey and lemon juice. Take this tea, during your menstrual cycle, 3 times a day. Also, you can add ginger to your food while cooking.


This is another herb that can effectively reduce menstrual cramps. It has a caffeic acid that contains pain killing substances or analgesic. Add a tablespoon of basil leaves to a cup of boiling water, close tightly and let it cool off, then drink this every few hours to ease the pains. You can also mesh the leaves and extract the juice, then add 2 teaspoon of it to a cup of warm water and drink it 3 times daily to ease the pain. You can add it to your food.


Cinnamon can relieve pains. It contains anticlotting, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic materials that can help relieve the pains. It also a rich source of dietary fiber, iron, calcium and manganese. Add ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon powder in a cup of water, leave it for 5 minutes, add little honey after that and slowly sip it. Drink 2 to 3 cups of cinnamon tea a day or two to period to prevent cramps. To relieve pain on the first day of your period, add ½ teaspoon of cinnamon powder, with one teaspoon of honey to a cup of warm water and drink it 3 times.

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Fennel contains phytoestrogenic, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory materials that can relax the muscles in the uterus. This relieves discomfort and cramping as a result. Add 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds to a cup of boiling water, let it simmer for 5 minutes, remove from heat and strain it, add 1 teaspoon of honey and stir well. Drink this tea twice a day, starting from 3 days to your period. Drink it as needed for the cramps and drink it hot for effective results.


It is effective for the pains. Try walking as an exercise. Walking improves blood circulation in the pelvic area. Try swimming too. Swimming releases the body’s natural pain killer – endorphins, and it is very effective for menstrual pain. try yoga and cardiovascular exercises too. They are very effective in relieving menstrual pains.


Parsley is rich in apiol and myristicin which are highly effective in relieving pains and also regulate irregular cycles. Add ¼ cup of fresh parsley in a mug, pour a cup of boiling water, let it sit for 5 minutes, strain the tea and rink immediately. Drink twice a day to minimize pains when you are on your period.


Being an anti-inflammatory agent, papaya aids in relieving menstrual pains. It is rich in iron, carotene, calcium, and vitamins A&C. couple of days to your period, include papaya to your diet to eliminate pains.


It is obvious that carrots are good for your eyes, but do you know that they are very effective in regulating menstruation and relieving menstrual cramps? Blend carrot and pour it in a glass. Drink immediately. Carrot juice will make you feel better.

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Lavender oil

Lavender oil is also known to help relieve menstrual pains. Just apply the oil around your stomach and you should feel the difference within 10 to 15 minutes. The smell from lavender also boosts your endorphin levels leading to increased relaxation and muscle tension release.

Be kind to yourself. Relax. Listen to your favorite songs. Read a good book. Take a walk. Meet with friends and be happy. Make lifestyle changes fast if need be. When you are happy, your mind will help you fight the physical pain.


Adanma Onuoha

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