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How to deal with menstrual cramps

Health
 The severity of the pain may vary during the cycle, going from intense spasms to dull, constant pain [Courtesy, Freepik]

Menstrual cramps can be intense and leave one feeling groggy and under the weather. If you must have a busy or productive day and cannot afford to take a break on the first two days of your period, you may want to find a way to ease the discomfort and have an easier time dealing with the cramps.

Mayoclinic describes these cramps as throbbing pains in the lower abdomen. The severity of the pain may vary during the cycle, going from intense spasms to dull, constant pain.

"It may also vary with each period. Some periods may cause little or no discomfort, while others may be more painful," the National Health Service (NHS) reports.

Here are some tips to ease period pain and discomfort.

Exercise

While even getting out of the sofa and moving about may be the last thing you want to do, several reports indicate that exercise can help alleviate the pain.

"Exercise also provides other health benefits, such as improved mood, reduced menstrual cramps, and less fatigue. Although people may need to adjust their usual exercise routine while on their period, staying active can be helpful," Medical News Today reports.

Apply heat

This is where a hot water bottle comes in handy.

"Heat can help relax the muscles contributing to cramping, so applying heat to your abdomen or back can help relieve your pain," Houston Methodist Leading Medicine reports on its blog.

Take a pain-killer

Mayoclinic advices that a person suffering from period cramps should start taking the pain reliever at the beginning of your period, or as soon as you feel symptoms. The report suggests over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve).

Eat a healthy diet

You can shift your diet to foods that help reduce the pain and symptoms, according to Insider Magazine. The report recommends drinking more water to ease the bloating and prevent your body from retaining water. It further suggests that foods like fish rich in omega 3, help reduce inflammation and in turn ease cramps. You should eat greens too, as you are losing iron, which will leave you feeling sluggish.

"Bananas contain vitamin B6 and a healthy dose of potassium, which can help relieve your bloating and cramping symptoms," the report adds before recommending more foods like pineapple and eggs as well as beverages like chamomile tea. Ginger can help with nausea.

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