Patient Comments: Menstrual Cramps - Effective Treatments

What kinds of treatments have been effective for your menstrual cramps?

Comment from: kn05, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 25

The first 2 days of my periods are extremely painful. I usually have to take regular doses of ibuprofen or some other NSAID every 4 to 6 hours, otherwise I start vomiting or feel super nauseated. The medication helps if taken on time, i.e., sometime before or immediately after my period starts. Engaging in activities like watching my favorite shows, reading a good book, browsing, playing board games or even hanging out with friends and loved ones helps me de-stress, hence relieving the pain. A hot shower or applying heat to my abdominal area helps. I also find drinking cocoa or just a having a bar of regular chocolate helps in managing the pain.

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Comment from: MS, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 23

When I was a teenager up to my early 20s, I used to take 1 Midol in the morning and it was enough to stop the cramping. Now, I've stopped taking Midol and found that drinking lots of water and doing exercises that focus on my abdomen and pelvic area in between cycles really lessens the pain when my cycle starts. But sometimes when the pain is a little too much, I rest with a heating pad for a while.

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Comment from: Kelly M., 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: February 03

I've had terrible cramps ever since I had my first period at 16. A couple of years ago I had a copper IUD placed (I've had pulmonary embolisms so copper IUD is my only option for birth control) and now the cramps are even worse. However, if I take ibuprofen before the pain gets really awful, it isn't as bad. I also use a heating pad or take a hot shower, which helps a lot.

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Comment from: Namley, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 16

I have had most miserable cramps since the first period. Obscene amounts of ibuprofen coupled with Tylenol, heating pad and exercise gave some relief. Strangely enough I have noted that when on an antibiotic for frequent sinus infections, I have no cramps! Go figure! Also of note, if you read the fine print on allergy medications, they have a side effect of menstrual cramps.

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Comment from: BionicEye, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: November 21

I've had horrible menstrual cramps, pelvic and lower backache since I first got my period. The only thing that works is prescription mefenamic acid. One time, even that didn't work; I had to take a Percocet. It's driving me nuts as my doctors think I might have endometriosis. I'm also infertile. The pain has caused me to faint at least 5 times in an hour before. Not even hot water bottles help when it's that bad. I think I have a good pain tolerance. I broke my arm before, and that hurt more than the cramps.

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Comment from: raekl, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 01

I have had horrible cramps since I got my period 18 years ago. I have tried them all - NSAIDS, heat, rest, exercise, birth control etc. Sometimes these remedies work but not often. A couple of years ago when I was in school for massage therapy, our hydrotherapy teacher suggested an ice pack to the abdomen for cramps. I thought it was kind of a crazy suggestion but it actually works for me. The reason ice helps is because the muscle is "spasming", so to speak. Also, it helps to decrease the flow of bleeding. If you think of normal first aid principles, you would apply ice to other spasming/bleeding/swollen areas to help reduce the symptoms of injury and pain.

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Comment from: mo, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: June 30

I've found that eating just half a banana before the menstrual cramps get really bad, usually when I first notice the bleeding, helps and I feel fine. And my cramps are usually very bad.

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Comment from: KittenUK, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: January 23

I'm 20, I first had period when I was 12. For the last 5 to 6 years it has been a nightmare every month. Thank goodness I am in pain only the first day or two from the start of bleeding and it doesn't last the whole week. But lately I feel like the pain is getting stronger. I used to get painkillers as soon as the pain took over (I kept hoping I just won't be in pain in spite of it happening every single month), but now that doesn't really help. I think I will try to start drinking painkillers couple of days before the period and hope it will help. Because as you all know, that pain just makes you want to curl up somewhere, cry and sob until it's over and then sob some more.

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Menstrual Cramps - Experiences Question: How often do you experience menstrual cramps?
Menstrual Cramps - Other Causes Question: Do foods, stress, daily activities or other factors worsen menstrual cramps? How do you manage and treat these other causes or triggers?
Menstrual Cramps - Symptoms Question: Please describe the symptoms of your menstrual cramps.
Menstrual Cramps - Adolescent Girls Question: If you are under age 18, describe your experience with menstrual cramps.

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