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Period pains

Menstrual pains are cramps of uterine origin located in the lower abdomen, which may affect the women during the menstrual period.

 

What period pains are

Period pains (also known as dysmenhorrea) are uterine cramps located in the lower abdomen, which can affect women during their menstrual cycle, as well as some days before.
In some cases they only account for an annoying discomfort but, when acute, can even reduce daily activities for some days.

Why they occur

During the menstrual cycle, the uterus twitches to excrete the constituent cells and produces chemical substances that provoke the inflammation. These cells, in turn, trigger the uterine muscular contraction. The higher the inflammatory substances, the higher the intensity of menstrual pain.

Moreover, the dysmenorrhea can depend on several physical, emotional and mental factors.

It's worth noting that the pain threshold varies from one woman to another, but factors like stress and anxiety can also increase the menstrual pain.

As far as abnormal menstrual pain is concerned, it can be connected to various pathologies, including endometriosis, uterine fibroid, etc.

What forms

The pain is subjective and varies according to the several cycle stages and their intensity; it can be accompanied by an increase or reduction in appetite, tiredness, difficulty in concentration, headache, mammary tension, nervousness, mood swings, constipation or diarrhea, weight gain and dizziness.

The major symptom is anyway the alternation of lower abdomen twinges, which can expand to the back and to the internal part of thighs.

Useful expedients

In order to reduce the occurrence of periodic pain, here are some useful tips:

  • During the two weeks ahead of the cycle, it is advisable to decrease the consumption of milk and dairy products, refined grains, veal and chicken which contain hormones. It's recommended, instead, to consume food rich in magnesium: peas, green vegetables, almonds, peanuts and cocoa.
  • During the menstrual cycle, it's fundamental to consume carbohydrates, proteins and vegetables
  • For dinner, it's preferable to consume food with a relaxing effect such as green beans, courgettes, boiled potatoes, pasta or rice with pesto

Other expedients to stick to:

  • Reduce stress
  • Avoid alcohol and tobacco
  • Hot poultices on the affected area or hot baths can soothe the pain
  • Regular physical activity to reduce cramps
  • Vitamin E, Vitamin B-1, Vitamina B-6, Omega-3 trans fats and magnesium can be helpful
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