The truth is that sadly periods are often going to be unpleasant, but they shouldn’t be so painful or disruptive that they get in the way of your every day. We’re taking a look at how you can alleviate cramps and PMS to make that time of the month a little more tolerable.
Eat loads of fresh fruit and veg: Your mum has (no doubt) already drilled it into you about the benefits of fruit and veg, and as always she’s right! They can help with everything from bad moods to cramps and energy and can improve the condition of your skin and hair!
Avoid caffeine: We already know that caffeine dehydrates the skin and body, but it’s especially no friend around the time of your period as it can trigger PMS, headaches and make you tired. Don’t forget caffeine is also found in tea and soft drinks so consider cutting back and being aware of how much you’re taking in. Warm water with lemon is also a great switch up when you’ve already had your cuppa in the morning.
Eat more whole grains: Brown rice, oatmeal, corn, even whole wheat bread or whole wheat pasta will make you feel an awful lot better as they are filled with important nutrients and can help with that dreaded constipation some face on their period.
Water, water, water: We can’t stress enough the importance of getting enough water into you. Try and drink six to eight glasses a day. It will help flush out your system and make you feel far better.
Vitamins: You may need to up your vitamin and mineral intake too, but it’s wise to discuss this with your doctor or dietician first. Some people get enough from fruit and veg, but if not, taking things like calcium and zinc can be good as they are known to alleviate PMS and cramps. Vitamin C and E can help reduce tenderness in the breasts and B Complex vitamins may ease water retention and PMS.
Exercise: Your womb feels like it’s about to fall out so it’s the last thing you feel like doing, but believe it or not, even the mildest exercise will make you feel a whole lot better. Some gentle stretches can improve blood and oxygen circulation making cramps feel less severe. Go on, give it a go.
Relax: Try a spot of mindfulness or meditation or even yoga to ease the stress and headaches. There are loads of apps out there to help with this. If that’s not your thing just take time out to chill on the couch and lash on your favourite rom-com.
Herbs and teas: Herbs such as St. John’s Wort, rosemary and wild ginger are said to offer relief from period pain. Camomile tea and peppermint tea are also recommended to soothe and relieve cramps and are a great alternative if you’re trying to cut down on regular tea or coffee
Massage: No, you don’t need to book into a swanky health spa, you can gently massage your own belly. It increases circulation, and it also relaxes your muscles and reduces PMS.
Bubble baths: Take a lovely long soak in the tub. Not only with your backache and cramps be relieved, but you’ll feel so relaxed!
Laugh: Sounds far from appealing when you’re in a world of pain, but it’s worth a try. They say laughter is the best medicine and it may just be true. Even if you’re not really in the mood to be sociable, you will feel so much better if you have a right old belly laugh. Catch up with your bestie for a giggle or stick on the funniest movie you own.
Hot water bottle: Wrap a hot water bottle in a towel or cover and place in on your poor swollen belly or achy back. Guaranteed relief from unbearable cramps. Now, curl up, and check out the more lighthearted celeb goss and fashion and beauty stories from KISS.ie to really take your mind off the pain.