Most women experience period pain at some point. It usually feels like a dull ache or muscle cramp in your stomach or lower back that happens around the start of your period. The pain may come in spasms or be a continuous ache that lasts for several days.
Usually this period pain isn’t severe enough to interfere with your usual life, although it may make you feel more like curling up with a hot water bottle than running to the gym. It is usually enough to take an over the counter painkiller when you need it, but in some cases it may be necessary to seek painful periods treatment from your doctor.
The Cause of Period Pain
Period pain happens because of the way the muscles in the wall of your uterus contract during your period. When the contractions cause the muscles to press against a blood vessel, the blood supply to part of the womb can be temporarily blocked. The lack of oxygen triggers a pain signal, which will go away once the blood flow comes back.
Sometimes the cause of period pain is more serious. Severe pain could be caused by a condition such as pelvic inflammatory disease or endometriosis. The pain can be worse when it is linked to one of these conditions as they can cause problems like inflammation, growths in the womb, or the growth of extra uterine cells in other parts of your body. Painful periods treatment may need to tackle the underlying cause in order to provide relief.
When to Seek Advice
If you are experiencing severe pain or it is interfering with your work or other everyday activities, it is worth consulting your doctor about painful periods treatment. Your doctor may recommend changing your contraception as this could make your periods lighter and less painful. The doctor can also check for any underlying condition that can be treated to relieve the pain.