Menstrual cramps vs. your brain
Dysmenorrhea is the scientific name for the dreaded menstrual cramp- the dull, throbbing pain in the lower abdomen that sets in before and during your period. While pain medication is an easy and effective go-to, some women seek a natural alternative for relieving pain. For this, we turn to nature's pain reliever and it's within your body! Endorpins are neurotransmitters that interfere with opiate receptors in the brain, helping us to perceive less pain. Endorphins are most easily released with exercise, which means that a few well-timed movements could actually significantly improve your experience with pain during your period.
Mitigating menstural pain with some easy stretching
We want to focus on stretches that:
- Are not overly demanding
- Stretch the abdominal muscles and hip flexors
- Ease pain in the lower back and front of the body
Child's pose is effective for: stretching the muscles in the lower back and promoting relaxation
1.)Begin by kneeling and sit back with your butt on your heels. 2.)Sit up straight, then stretch your upper body forward and down until your stomach comes to rest on your thighs. 3.)Extend your arms in front of your head and let them rest on the floor with your forehead on the ground. 4.)Hold for up to 60 seconds, practicing deep, full breaths the entire time.
Wide-angle seated stretch
1.) Sit on the floor with your legs wide apart and your feet flexed. 2.)Place your hands behind you on the ground and draw your belly button in toward your spine. 3.)Hold 30 seconds. 4.)Now reach your arms in front of you and fold as far forwards as you can. 5.)Hold up to 2 minutes.
At Ahkami Medical Group, we believe that pain relief can be found naturally. The other great benefit of stretching is it allows you to stay centered in the moment and practice breathing deeply to increase circulation which will also help defeat cramps.
Dr. Shahrokh Ahkami, M.D.