there was a point almost 6 months ago when I felt like my period controlled my life. I planned friend hang-outs, appointments, family events, ANYTHING around my period. It was extremely debilitating and disappointing whenever I had to reschedule or cancel something that I truly wanted to go because of my cramps, heavy flow, or party-pooper mood. I am absolutely certain that I am not the only unfortunate gal who goes through the same thing. Luckily, I have found some relief over the past few months through trial and error. Some of these took some hard work and some are simple tips and tricks to alleviate period symptoms. I hope this can assist or teach any ladies out there how to handle your periods a little better. Every body is different and everyone goes through different menstrual symptoms-these tips have been helping me currently!
1 / physically healthy
Around 3 months ago I started eating healthier, portioning my meals, working out, and I naturally lost around 10-15 pounds. After I shed the weight and maintained my healthy eating and regular exercise, I noticed a HUGE difference with my period symptoms. My breast tenderness went away completely which was insane because this was one of the most painful side effect I was having. When I had lost the weight, I also lost a lot of my boobies so I’m assuming that’s why the swollen effect doesn’t affect me anymore. The cramps I usually suffer through the day before and the first day of my period cut in half so I was no longer cramping the day before. My period also cut down to only 1 day of heavy flow and 3 days of medium to light flow. Very manageable compared to what it was like before. I still cannot believe how getting healthy really lessened my whole period experience.
This is definitely something that takes time and hard work. I actually had no intention of alleviating my period symptoms while I was eating well and exercising often. I was simply trying to be healthy and started to notice the effect it was having on my PMS. I highly suggest trying this out and I do think this is the most important, but most difficult tip I have regarding “dealing” with your period. It takes time and I started feeling changes gradually-it was not an overnight thing. For anyone who has terrible period symptoms and also doesn’t have the healthiest lifestyle, try being good for a few months to your body and it might just thank you. 🙂
2 / midol
Now this is something that not everyone is going to agree on. Even though my PMS has decreased in severity, I still get crazy body aches, major fatigue, and cramps that make me dizzy on the first day of my period. I sometimes even consider myself lucky because I only experience it on the first day-I have friends who feel like this throughout their whole period. Yikes. So I do take one dose of good ole’ Midol and that usually does the trick for the rest of the day. Midol is the ONLY pain reliever that works for my period cramps. It also contains caffeine so it helps with my fatigue. I also know that a lot of people do not like Midol. I have friends who feel very nauseous when they take it and some who just don’t like pain relievers in general b/c of the ingredients. Luckily, I don’t get any symptoms and I only take one dose (2 capsules) once a month. I do have those rare periods where I don’t feel the need to take one because my cramps happen to be manageable that cycle. But more often that not, I do like it to help get through that first horrid day.
If you’ve never tried taking Midol, I suggest it but with caution. Check the ingredients, make sure you’re good to take it.
3 / period app diary
Literally my savior. I currently use the Period Tracker Lite app and it has been THE BEST thing that has happened to me. I was previously using the Period Diary app and it screwed up my schedule so much and never predicted my period correctly. After extensive research, I found the P tracker Lite and I ain’t never going back! Ever since I got this app (around 8 months ago), I always know what day I will be on my period. It has never been off even one day. I must admit, I do have a pretty regular period cycle but the reviews had plenty of girls with irregular cycles who were gushing over this app. It is DEFINITELY something worth trying if you want to know when your periods will be, days where you will be fertile, ovulating, etc…I even saw a lot women who want to get pregnant use this successfully. And best of all, it’s free! Gals, do yourselves a favor and get this app.
4 / knowing your symptoms
I never used to keep track of my symptoms and what days I was feeling moody or having cramps. But over the past year, I really wanted to start seeing if there were patterns in my cycle. Again, the P Tracker Lite comes in handy because they have excellent tools to easily note what kind of PMS symptoms you were having that day. Knowing your symptoms and keeping track of them is a great way for you to predict and be prepared for your next period.
5 / be prepared
Nothing is worse than seeing a spot on your pantie and realizing you don’t have any pads or tampons in the house. Be prepared! Especially when you start tracking your period, you can make sure to stock up on things you need before it even starts. Always have a little period pouch in your handbag or backpack so you are prepared in any event. I always carry a small little zipper pouch with extra pads and a Midol. Once you know around what time of the month you will be getting your period, you can start rearranging your schedule so you’re not doing the most extreme things for those few days or week. Planning ahead and just being a little mindful of your period days is a great way to mentally prepare yourself. I’m not saying to not do anything at all-just be more cautious and don’t plan a crazy Vegas trip that weekend when you know you’ll be a bit more emotional and just not feeling the best. I mean, unless you’re one of the lucky ones who literally don’t experience any PMS. Haha. Well, you wouldn’t be reading this anyway eh?
6 / stay hydrated and hot compresses
I drink a hell of a lot more water (lemon water, in particular) when I am nearing my period and during. I try to keep my body as hydrated as possible because my body and hormones are going haywire and I want to make sure that I am replenishing myself as much as possible. I highly suggest lemon water, green or ginger tea, or coconut water. I also tend to get really peckish during my period so drinking water helps fill me up a bit when I start inching closer to a bag of Hot Cheetos (tehe). Or having healthy snacks like fruits or hummus. I use a hot compress on my lower abdomen when I am cramping and it may be temporary but it really does loosen up those tightened muscles a bit.
7 / try different period accessories
You should be using whatever is the most comfortable for you when on your period. I know a lot of people who have never tried using anything other than pads or tampons. I have heard the many benefits of using a menstrual cup such as significantly less cramping, no risk of TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome), way more hygienic, etc… I suggest doing some research and trying it out. I am still in the middle of learning how to use my menstrual cup and testing it out-I will definitely blog about my experience! Personally, tampons are uncomfortable for me and I leak no matter what brand/size I wear which leaves me with pads. I know there are more alternatives than pads/tampons and even menstrual cups, I have heard of sea sponges?? Haven’t looked into them yet but I am very open to different period accessories.
So these are basically my tips and some things I did to prove my period symptoms. Like most things in life, it takes some hard work to get the results you desire. Some of the things I mentioned take trial and error-but I promise it will be worth it once you start feeling a difference. I do hope this helps any women out there who are having a tough time with their PMS. Instead of canceling plans, avoiding tasks, or letting PMS control you, do some research and start taking control of your period!