Menstrual cycles, while indicative of the health and well-being of a person, can be exhausting. When you are on your periods, it is normal to feel more tired than ever, along with a certain sense of discomfort and agitation.
But, you can do certain things to not feel fatigued, to keep your mood from swinging, and to improve the overall experience.
According to Dr Swetha MP, consultant, obstetrician and gynaecologist at Motherhood Hospital, HRBR Layout, Bangalore, there are five specific hacks that can help you sail through this time of the month and make it a little more bearable, and even pleasurable.
1. Reducing period pain
Feeling mild to heavy pain in the thighs, abdomen, and lower back during menstruation is normal. This is known as primary dysmenorrhea or menstrual cramps, says the doctor. “Menstrual cramps can begin one or two days prior to the onset of your period and linger for a few days. They are muscle spasms in the uterus brought on by the release of a hormone called prostaglandin. While some women only suffer minor symptoms, others may struggle with severe headaches, dizziness, nausea, and loose stools,” she explains, adding that if you endure mild period cramps and pain, you can do the following:
– Apply a heating pad to your lower back and abdomen.
– Take an Epsom salt bath while using the essential oils of lavender and clary sage.
– Use jojoba and clary sage essential oil to massage your abdomen.
– To treat muscle cramps, do simple stretches and exercises.
– Undergo massage therapy.
2. Reduce bloating
The period bloat is a typical symptom that you may experience before and during your period. It can make you feel as though you’ve put on weight or that your abdomen is tight. There are a few tricks you can do to lessen bloating.
– Stay hydrated and drink plenty of liquids.
– Boost your fruit and vegetable intake. Ensure that you are consuming adequate amounts of protein, fibre, vitamins, and minerals.
– Stay away from coffee. Instead, sip on herbal teas like chamomile, ginger, and peppermint.
– Good to take a rest.
– Do a workout or yoga.
3. Eat dark chocolates
Consuming 40–120 grams of dark chocolate every day while on your period may help lessen discomfort, says Dr Swetha.
“Due to the high magnesium concentration of dark chocolate, it may be able to reduce period cramps. Magnesium aids in muscular relaxation and may prevent the generation of substances that indicate cramps,” she says.
4. Combating odour
It is natural and typical for your body to produce a slightly sour or even sweet-smelling vaginal odour. “Throughout your period, sex, and ovulation, your vagina strives to maintain a delicate, slightly acidic equilibrium. Small bacteria, known as lactobacilli, assist in maintaining the balance, and even mild vaginal scents that resemble bread or beer may be okay because they also contain these beneficial bacteria,” the expert says.
She suggests washing the outside of the genital area to keep it clean. “Warm water can be used to rinse your vulva’s interior; avoid using soap, which can irritate your vagina and upset its pH balance.”
5. Keeping it clean
You should change your sanitary pad if you feel filthy or detect an odour. Thoroughly wash your hands with cold water and mild soap. Change the napkin or tampon no later than eight hours. Every four hours, you should wash your cup if you use one, the doctor concludes.