Painful Periods: All You Need to Know

Painful periods

Painful periods

Painful periods can make your monthly flow a terrible experience. Menstrual periods take place when the uterus gets rid of its lining every month. It is considered typical to feel slight cramping and ache during menstrual periods. However, painful periods, medically known as dysmenorrheal, which are very severe up to the extent that it affects your daily activities is considered abnormal.

READ ALSO: Possible Causes of Heavy Menstrual Period

There are two types of painful periods. They include:

  • Primary dysmenorrheal
  • Secondary dysmenorrheal

Primary dysmenorrheal occurs in women who feel pain before and during menstruation.

Secondary dysmenorrheal occurs in women who have had normal periods that afterward become painful.

Painful periods may be caused by endometriosis or uterine fibroids, which are conditions that impact upon the pelvic region.

What is the Cause of Cramps during Period?

Most women do ask “what is the cause of cramps during period?” The truth is that detecting the causes of painful periods during menstrual flow is always very tasking. Some women are more susceptible to having painful period compared to others.

So, some causes of painful periods and possible risk factors that make you more predisposed include:

  • smoking
  • being under age 20
  • hereditary or family history of painful periods
  • heavy bleeding menstrual flow during periods
  • irregular periods
  • never having had a baby
  • hitting puberty before 11

The prostaglandin hormone triggers muscle tightening in your uterus that pushes out the lining. These tightening can generate ache and inflammation and the level of prostaglandin raises right before menstruation begins.

Causes of Painful Periods

Painful menstrual periods can also be the result of core medical condition, such as:

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS): This menstrual condition is quite common and is caused by hormonal changes in the body which takes place about 1 to 2 weeks before the onset of menstruation. Symptoms may vanish after at the start of menstrual flow.

Endometriosis: This is a painful medical condition in which cells from the lining of the uterus grow in other parts of the body, usually on the Fallopian tubes, ovaries, or tissue lining the pelvis.

Uterine Fibroids: Uterine fibroids are benign growths that mount pressure on the uterus or triggers abnormal painful periods, though they regularly don’t trigger signs.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID): Pelvic inflammatory disease is an infection that affects the fallopian tubes, ovaries, or uterus often triggered by STD that generates inflammation of the reproductive organs.

Adenomyosis: Adenomyosis is an abnormal condition that makes the lining of the uterus to grow into the muscular wall of the uterus, thereby leading to inflammation, pressure, and pain. Adenomyosis causes painful period cramps and can lead to longer or heavier periods.

Cervical stenosis: This is another cause of painful period cramps. Cervical stenosis is an unusual condition that causes the cervix to be so small or thin such that it slows menstrual flow, causing an increase of pressure inside the uterus that causes pain.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS): Polycystic ovary syndrome is a hormone disorder that affects some women, particularly women of childbearing age. Some indicators of PCOS are high androgen levels, prolonged periods, heavy periods, acne, multiple skin tags, hair loss, irregular periods, excess hair on face and body, excess weight gain, difficulty losing weight, and dark skin.

How Painful are Painful Periods?

Menstrual cramps can be so severe such that it affects your daily activities and refuses to get better when you take OTC pain medicine. In most cases, painful periods is accompanied by heavy bleeding and/or clotting.

READ ALSO: Home Remedies for Menstrual Pain

Typical menstrual cramps are very painful, but symptoms can be relieved by taking over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers, such as ibuprofen. Severe painful periods appear to start early in menstrual cycle and last longer than usual cramps.

What are the Symptoms of Period Coming?

Some women experience symptoms of period coming about 5 days and 2 weeks prior to when your period shows up. You may notice some palpable symptoms that allow you know that your period is coming. This group of symptoms is called premenstrual syndrome.

Most women experience PMS to some degree. PMS symptoms may be mild such that it goes unnoticed or severe such that it affects your daily activities.

Ensure you consult your doctor is your symptoms of period coming interferes with your daily activities. PMS usually fritter away within a few days of menstruation.

So, what are the symptoms of period coming?

  • Breakouts
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Bloating
  • Tenderness
  • Fatigue
  • Bowel issues
  • Mood swings
  • Headache
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Low back pain

READ ALSO: Implantation Bleeding Symptoms: Difference Between Implantation Bleeding and Period

What is the Cause of Cramps during Periods?

Menstrual cramps during periods are majorly caused by contractions in the uterus. The womb is akin to a muscle, if it tightens too forcefully during periods, it can cause nearby blood vessels to compress, thereby briefly severing the oxygen supply to the womb. The cause of cramps during periods is triggered by this lack of oxygen.

You can take aspirin, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxen if you have mild menstrual cramps. These drugs are more effective when taken at the very onset of bleeding.

You can apply heat to ease pains and place a heating pad on your tummy or lower back. You can also find relief by taking a warm bath and getting enough rest. Certain foods can trigger menstrual cramps and painful periods. Salty foods, sugary foods and caffeine should be strictly avoided. Steer clear from consuming alcohol and tobacco.

Exercising regularly helps to ease or prevent painful periods. So, to prevent painful periods, engage make exercise part of your weekly practice. Don’t hesitate to consult your doctor if these remedies fail to relieve painful periods.



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