Dysmenorrheal is a very common women’s condition known also as painful menstruation. It typically occurs in the adolescence and the pain decreases with age. This condition rarely starts in the initial menstrual period, but usually occurs about 5 years later.
Dysmenorrhea’s Symptoms and Diagnosis
The pain felt during the menstruation is located in lower abdomen and is crampy, starting right before or just along with the menstrual bleeding. Sometimes, it even may be accompanied with sever pain in the thighs or back, but the pain gradually diminishes within 1-3 days. This pain is not constant, but rather intermittent and it may be at times as severe as disabling women from doing something. In addition to cramping, there could be also diarrhea, fatigue, nausea, dizziness, headache and other flu-like symptoms.
For the proper diagnosis of this condition, some physical and medical history examinations are done. The physical examination includes complete examination of pelvic and abdominal, during which the shape and size of the internal woman’s organs like uterus, ovaries and cervix are checked. If adolescent girls are examined, pelvic examination is not necessary.
Other tests — In some cases performing a pelvic ultrasound may be required as well to confirm the diagnosis.
Pain in dysmenorrhea is caused by special chemicals called prostaglandins, which are formed during menstrual period in the uterus lining. They cause uterus contractions that decrease blood flow and cause pain. As a result, the oxygen supply is also decreased. Some women feel quite similar pain to the labor pain, while others feel less discomfort. These chemicals may lead to diarrhea and nausea.
Women who suffer from dysmenorrhea have the chance to choose between various treatment options, provided below:
Hormonal treatment through birth control pills – this treatment is very effective, especially for those who would like to become pregnant in the future. Obviously, they will not be able to get pregnant during the treatment, but a few months after it they have a better chance to get pregnant than before. The aim of this method is to reduce the number of prostaglandins by thinning the uterus lining. This helps for decreasing both menstrual bleeding and uterine contractions, which in result decreases the pain.
The second option is to use non-steroidal antiinflammatory drugs, which are effective in reducing the pain in dysmenorrhea. Some kinds of drugs can be found over-the-corner while others need to be prescribed by a doctor. If you take them without doctor’s supervision, ensure you don’t exceed the adequate dose. You can start taking these drugs as soon as you feel the first symptoms of menstruation and continue taking them for two more days. Both these treatment methods can be applied together.
Another option to treat pain in dysmenorrhea is to use intrauterine device, which can reduce the condition by 50 percent with a special hormone called levonorgestrel. This method is still new and not well-researched yet.
There is a method that uses no medication for treating this condition. Although it may not be as effective as pills, it can be successfully combined with some of the above mentioned treatment for better results.
Some people apply heat to warm the lower abdomen as much as possible. They use a bottle with hot water, heating pad or patch that is self-heating to reduce the pain effectively. Ensure you check the temperature before placing it to the place, as too hot pad or bottle may burn your skin. The desired temperature is about 40ºC. You can apply this method as often as you feel the pain. Some take ibuprofen in addition to the heat to get rid of the pain faster.
Herbal and vitamin treatments are also in the process of studying and due to some negative reports from women that got no relief from this kind of treatment, many doctors do not recommend these treatment options.
Some recommend exercises as a method to reduce the pain in dysmenorrhea. Exercises have a number of other benefits too, so they will help in your overall wellbeing.
Aternative medicine on the other hand offers other options for treating the pain in dysmenorrhea. The method includes such popular practices like acupuncture and yoga. Its efficiency just like the previous one should be confirmed by additional researches.
The last option is the surgical one; however, it still doesn’t provide long-term results, in addition to the possible complications that might occur as a result of the surgery. This makes this option the last resort for many women who feel pain in dysmenorrhea.
Natural Ayurvedic Home Remedies.Treat menstrual cramps with natural home remedies by using either flax seeds or ginger.