Sometimes menstrual cramps can be the biggest burden, making us feel as if we can’t do anything other than curl up on our couch and wait until they pass. I’ve found myself searching for what helps with period cramps far too many times to count, (and trust me, I’ve tried just about everything) but I have finally gotten it down to a T. Try out my favorite tips and tricks on how to stop period cramps to get off of your couch and conquer the day, without letting your period hold you back. These are the top four effective strategies that help relieve my menstrual cramps:
- Get active!
Exercise may sound like the last thing you want to do when you’re cramping, but I promise it's worth the hassle! It could be a quick walk around your neighborhood, trying out a few yoga poses, or following along with a virtual workout recording. Whatever you choose to do, even the slightest bit of exercise releases endorphins, which ultimately makes us happier and relaxes our muscles. This as a win-win; You’re getting active and relieving menstrual cramps at the same time!
- Take a bath
A quick and (even more importantly) relaxing way to get some period cramp relief is to take a hot bath. I love to light my favorite candle, turn on relaxing music, and add epsom salt and a few essential oils to my bath. The heat of the water increases blood flow, and with the epsom salt and oils it can also help relax the muscles in your uterus. I recommend putting your phone down and embracing the time you have with yourself. This is a calming remedy to ease your aches and pains, but also gives your mind a quick break from reality.
Your cycle can truly take the energy out of you at times, but your body is working hard so don’t be afraid to give yourself a break. Take the time to rest up and care for yourself. Going to bed a little earlier than usual or taking a nap during the day will replenish your body and in turn, ease period cramps. I recommend you put on your favorite pair of Saalt Wear and grab a good read or turn on a movie to help you wind down. It can be hard to take the time to do this for yourself, but I promise your body will thank you for the extra rest!
- Eat with intention
There are various foods that help with period cramps, along with foods that can heighten them. If you’re someone that tends to cramp on your period, try to plan a few meals and snacks before your cycle begins. Look for nutrient packed foods that contain potassium, calcium, omega-3’s, magnesium, or iron in order to relieve cramping and bloating. A few options include kale, spinach, lemon, banana, salmon, and oats. Some items to consider avoiding during your cycle are caffeine, lots of salty foods, alcohol, red meat, and dairy. Everyone reacts differently to food, so finding what your body enjoys versus what it cannot tolerate depends on you.
Many struggle with painful menstrual cramps so it is important to know that you are not alone. It’s normal to have some mild cramping, but if something doesn’t feel right or your cramps are preventing you from participating in your normal daily activities, you may want to seek guidance from your doctor. Listen to your body, and replenish and restore it as you see fit. Your body is doing incredible things and working extra hard for you so make sure to give it some extra love during your cycle.