For some, their pain is reassuring. A physical sensation that reminds them of their strength as a woman. A reminder their bodies are powerful and trustworthy. It knows when to deliver itself of an endometrial lining which wasn't needed.
Some have said that the period is the tears of a vagina which didn't conceive. I disagree. I don't feel that a period is necessarily a sad thing. I'm sure many of you have been elated at the sight of it. The famous thank-fuck-im-not-pregnant period. Not all women want to get pregnant. But certainly for some the pain they feel is only sharpened by the emotional sense of disappointment that they did not conceive. It seems that in some cases the physical pain is a manifestation of the subconscious emotional pain they have buried deep. But everyone is different.
The pain of period cramps is two fold. It is partly due to the base line level of tension in the muscles of the body and partly due to the quantity of prostaglandins. Prostaglandins create inflammation and pain in the body. They are a crucial part of the healing process bringing blood flow to the area. But you can have too much of a good thing. Here are some herbs that can help and there are more details in a sister blog linked at the bottom.
1. Crampbark is a muscle relaxant. It releases tensions surrounding the womb to allow it to contract and bleed as normal. It needs to be taken from ovulation and throughout the painful days of menstruation for full effect. It has a bitter and aromatic taste which is difficult to take for some so I'd recommend 5ml of the tincture each day rather than a tea. (Kabirian, et.al. 2011) (Traditional evidence only)
2. Chamomile is also a relaxant but with an affinity for the digestion. It will ease any anxiety in the days preceeding the period which may add to the pain experienced. Worrying only makes it worse. Using tea bags from the supermarket put two bags in a cup of boiled water and infuse for 5mind before drinking. Do this two to three times a day for full effect. (Jenabi and Ebrahimzadeh, 2010).
3. Feverfew is an antispasmodic largely associated with Migraine. But it has the ability to release spasm in the womb too and has an anodyne action. It's another bitter/aromatic tasting herb so I'd recommend taking 2.5ml of the tincture every day from ovulation till the pain of the period goes. (Wood, M, 2008) (Traditional evidence only).
To read more about period pain and practical tips to deal with it check out my blog over on kali.com below.
Kabirian, M., Abedian, Z., Mazlom,S., Mahram, B. (2011) Self-management in primary dysmennorrhea: Toward evidence-based education. Life Science Journal. [Online] Available at: http://www.lifesciencesite.com/lsj/life0802/03_4540life0802_13_18_kabirian.pdf. [Accessed: 19 September 2017]
Jenabi, E. and Ebrahimzadeh, S. (2010) Chamomile tea for relief of primary dysmenorrhea. Iranian Journal of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Infertility. [Online] Available at: https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/20103382240 [Accessed: 19 September 2017].
Wood, M. (2008) The Earthwise Herbal: A complete guide to old world medicinal plants. USA. North Atlantic Books.