Dysmenorrhea can be literally translated as difficult monthly flow. Although it’s normal for most women to have mild abdominal cramps on the first day or two of their period, almost everyone suffers it. Medication can be taken, if the pain is severe said doctors.
Dr Niranjan Chavan, Professor, Gynaecology Department at LTMG (Sion) Hospital said, “Painful menstruation, also known as dysmenorrhea, is common. Prostaglandins are chemicals that are formed in the lining of the uterus during menstruation. These prostaglandins cause muscle contractions in the uterus, which cause pain and decrease blood flow and oxygen to the uterus. Dysmenorrhea can be divided into two broad categories: primary (occurring in the absence of pelvic pathology) and secondary (resulting from identifiable organic diseases like endometriosis). A complete physical examination should be performed to rule out the causes.”
Dr Anagha Karkhanis, gynaecologist fertility expert & Director – Cocoon fertility informed, “Women of every age group experience period pain, but it is mostly seen in the age group from 20 to 30. If the pain affects the quality of life, one has to opt for medication. And if it doesn’t go by medication further evaluation will be needed.”
Managing period pain:
- A heating pad or hot water bottle can reduce muscle spasms.
- Exercise like moderate walking may benefit.
- Taking a warm bath can relieve pain and help you relax
- Cut down on alcohol and smoking.
- Medications may require if the main lasts for a longer time.
- See your gynaecologist or GP if you have severe period pain.
Dr Ashok Anand, Professor and Head of Gynaecology Department, Sir JJ Group of Hospitals said, “Divert your attention from the pain and engage in the activities you like.”
According to Dr Chavan, “Acupuncture, acupressure, transdermal nitroglycerin, calcium-channel blockers, beta-adrenergic agonists, antileukotrienes, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) units have also been proposed as treatment of refractory dysmenorrhoea.”
For a happy period Ankita Ghag, clinical nutritionist, Co-founder and director, Vacchan Arogya recommends following a healthy diet. “Include food items like leafy vegetables, fruits, grains, whole grains, food rich in omega 3 and iron. And avoid cruciferous vegetables, canned soups and dairy products.”
However, doctors say that there is no scientific evidence regarding the dietary alterations to help relieve the period pain.