Beware of Menstrual Pain
Menstrual pain or dysmenorrhea (dysmenorrhea) is usually experienced by women 1-2 days before menstruation or the beginning of menstruation.
You need to be alert if menstrual pain that appears becomes unbearable, doesn't go away, appears every time your period comes, to interfere with your daily activities, because this could be a sign of a disease that requires further treatment.
A person's response to painful stimuli varies depending on the pain threshold that can be handled. In most women, the pain in the lower abdomen is not so excruciating that they can still carry out their usual activities. However, there are several factors that can increase a woman's risk of experiencing more severe menstrual pain, including:
- History of first menstruation at age 11 years or earlier
- Under 30 years old
- Excessive bleeding during menstruation for more than 7 days
- Smoking habits and consumption of alcoholic beverages
- Weight is not ideal (over or under)
- History of complaints of severe menstrual pain in the family
- history of frequent and irregular menstruation
Various Causes of Menstrual Pain
The causes of menstrual pain vary, among them, it is often divided into primary causes due to uterine muscle contractions caused by normal hormonal changes, or other causes.
1. uterine muscle contractions
Menstrual blood that comes out is actually the shed wall of the uterus. The shedding of the uterine lining is caused by hormonal fluctuations in the body. The function of these hormones can change due to hormonal imbalances, contraception, nutrition, excessive activity/exercise, stressors, body weight, and the presence of certain diseases.
During menstruation, the uterine lining sheds and the uterine muscles contract (tighten). These contractions can compress the blood vessels that surround the uterus, thereby cutting off the supply of blood and oxygen to the uterus. This condition causes uterine tissue to release chemicals that cause pain, one of which is prostaglandins.
Prostaglandins in addition to triggering inflammation, can also make the uterine muscles contract harder, causing menstrual pain. This substance can also cause several other complaints during menstruation, such as nausea, heartburn, weakness, breast pain, and headaches.
After menstruation, the amount of prostaglandins will decrease, so that menstrual pain and other symptoms can subside on their own.
2. Another problem.
There are several conditions/abnormalities/diseases that can cause menstrual pain to appear, namely:
Endometriosis (chocolate cyst)
Fibroids or myomas (benign tumors in the uterus)
- Side effects of using an intrauterine device (IUD)
- Pelvic Inflammation
- malignant tumor
In addition to menstrual pain, dysmenorrhea due to other causes of this problem is usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as:
- irregular menstruation,
- bleeding between periods
- pain during sexual intercourse
- Bleeding more than usual
- Menstrual periods are longer or more frequent
- vaginal discharge that itch, smells, or turns green
- pain in the pelvic area
Usually, if other causes of menstrual pain are found as above, special actions/therapy will be carried out depending on the cause.
Tips for Reducing Menstrual Pain
If you feel bothersome menstrual pain, there are some simple ways you can do to relieve these complaints, including:
- warm compresses on the abdomen and lower back.
- avoid fatty foods, caffeinated and alcoholic drinks, soft drinks
- Sufficient fluid needs by drinking water
- Consuming herbal drinks, such as chamomile and ginger tea
- consumption of fruit, vegetables, nuts, dark chocolate, eggs, milk, yogurt, and fish
- Increase physical activity or sports
- Practice relaxation techniques, such as meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises
- Using over-the-counter pain relievers, such as mefenamic acid
- Reduce stress, do your hobby
If the tips above are not able to reduce the symptoms of menstrual pain that you feel, please do an examination at a gynecologist. Appropriate therapy and treatment can be given after the examination.
Don't worry, the sooner the cause is known, and the sooner it is treated, the better the results will be and hopefully you will be free from menstrual pain soon.