Many women experience painful periods once a month. Usually, the pain subsides over the course of the period but you can take pain medication if the discomfort keeps you from going about your day.
What are the top three symptoms of period pain?
Painful periods can be an unpleasant fact of life for those of child-bearing age, though some women say they disappear after having children, while others don't get them at all. Everyone is different.
These are top 3 symptoms of periods:
1. Period cramps
2. Lower back pain and/or headaches
3. Nausea and general feeling of being unwell
Menstruation symptoms vary among women.
Apart from period pain you may also experience these symptoms:
What are menstrual cramps?
Menstrual/ Period cramps are often described as a throbbing or cramping sort of pain in the lower abdomen. Most cramping occurs before you start to bleed, but it can continue for a few days thereafter.
During a period, the muscles of the uterus tighten and relax to help the tissue lining that has built up in the past the month detach and flow out of the body. You might not notice these contractions or might feel only mild discomfort. Or you might feel them as painful cramps.
The main symptoms of menstrual cramps include:
The pain usually lasts 48 to 78 hours.
Though the pain is annoying and can disrupt your normal day-to-day activities. With a bit of self-care and pain medication, most women are able to deal with it well.
The condition is also marked by a variety of mental signs:
Primary period pain
Primary period pain is the most common kind of pain that is not caused by another condition. It’s when the muscles in the uterus contract. These contractions cause menstrual cramps.
Secondary period pain
Secondary period pain doesn’t usually start until much later in life and is caused by conditions like endometriosis or uterine fibroids. Endometriosis affects the lining of a woman’s uterus. It can leave you with very painful cramps during menstruation.
Other symptoms includes pain during or after sex and bleeding or spotting between periods.
Can you have period pain without a period?
If you notice cramping and pain around the pelvis but without getting your period it could be a sign of another condition. Among the most common reasons for period pain without bleeding are:
1. Irritable bowel syndrome, which can result in stomach pain and bloating or constipation.
2. Crohn’s disease can irritate your digestive tract and lead to changes in your bowel movement.
3. Ovulation sometimes causes cramps around two weeks after your period. These cramps are uncomfortable but often harmless.
4. Ovarian cysts can cause severe pain that extends toward the back and thighs.
5. Pelvic inflammatory disease is a bacterial infection that is spread through sexual intercourse.
6. Cystitis is a bladder infection and this may also cause cramping and pain around the pelvis.
7. Appendicitis is a medical emergency. It produces pain around the belly button that radiates toward the sides of the stomach. Cramps are usually severe.
8. Pregnancy and miscarriage could also cause cramping.
You should call a doctor if you get cramps that are very severe, aren’t linked to your period, or that don’t go away after a few days.