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Surprising Things That Could Be Causing Your Period Pain

Period aches have no doubt been experienced (and mourned) by people who menstruate. Some people have minor pains for a day or two, alerting them that their period is approaching. Others are in excruciating discomfort, requiring a hot water bottle, a blanket, and a day off work. If you’re wondering, “Why are my periods becoming worse?” or “Does sex make period cramps worse?”

you might be shocked to hear about some of the variables that might contribute to amplifying menstruation pain (spoiler: sex actually helps). Period pain is a completely natural and typical feature of the menstrual cycle that causes discomfort in the stomach, back, and thighs. This pain is known medically as dysmenorrhea, and there are two varieties of it: primary dysmenorrhoea, which includes usual symptoms such as weariness, bloating, headaches, and emotional feelings, and secondary dysmenorrhoea, which is caused by an underlying medical issue.

Smoking

Smoking can make period pain worse.

Smoking has been related to an increase in period pains by lowering oxygen levels and so amplifying the effects of pain-inducing substances such as prostaglandins. In fact, a 2020 study discovered that not only do cigarettes aggravate current period discomfort, but smokers are 1.45 times more likely than nonsmokers to develop dysmenorrhea.

Salty Foods

Which Is Healthier: Salty or Sweet Snacks? Here's What a Dietitian Says | EatingWell

This is a significant setback because potato chips pair nicely with ice cream as comfort food. Although salty meals may not directly induce period discomfort, research shows that excessive sodium levels enhance bloating independently of menstruation. As a result, it’s recommended to avoid eating salty foods in big quantities during your period, as they might add further water retention and bloating to an already bloated body caused by your cycle. You don’t want to make cramps any more unpleasant than they already are. Check the labels on processed items and avoid fast food if you’re being cautious, as they frequently include hidden salts.

Lack Of Sleep

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When you have your period, your body temperature rises, leaving you feverish, uncomfortable, and unable to sleep. The terrible side effect is that lack of sleep causes you to experience pain more acutely, so your normal cramps may seem worse. Longer durations can also be caused by a lack of sleep. “When you’re on your period, this might make sleeping more difficult and can frequently leave you feeling weary or short on energy.”

Caffeine

Substance Profile: Caffeine | U.S. Anti-Doping Agency

On your period, skip the cappuccino. Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which means it narrows blood vessels and restricts blood flow throughout the body, particularly to the uterine lining. It constricts blood arteries and may cause the vessels that supply the uterus to tighten. When blood arteries constrict, there is less room for blood to circulate freely, resulting in more discomfort. When your uterus contracts, constricted blood arteries can exacerbate cramping or discomfort. Caffeine has also been related to inflammation and bloating, which can amplify stomach cramps.

Stress

Even minor stress can impact long-term health, study warns

Period discomfort is exacerbated by stress.” Some studies have revealed that stress might be connected to painful periods, especially if you are stressed in the weeks preceding up to your period.
According to research published in the Journal of Women’s Health, women who were stressed two weeks before their period were two to four times more likely to experience moderate to severe symptoms than those who were not worried. Please let me know if you figure out how to be eternally calm.

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