If you’re part of the small percentage of women who report having little-to-no-pain during your menstrual cycles- then consider yourself very, very lucky!
When asked, approximately 80% of women report that they consistently experience unpleasant symptoms while on their period; whether it’s a headache, bloating, moodiness or abdominal cramping. Additionally, more than half of these women report that they have “extremely” bad cramps every month.
Painful cramping during your period can be a completely normal part of the menstruation process, though it might not seem like it while you’re curled up around your hot water bottle.
If you’re among the ranks of women who suffer from painful menstrual cramps, and you feel like you’ve tried everything from Midol to mom’s homemade soup, it might be time to think outside the box.
What Causes Period Cramps, Anyway?
Great question! I’m glad you asked. From here on out, you should think of your uterus like a large muscle- because, it is! And during your period, it gets quite the workout.
The sensation of cramping is caused by an excess of prostaglandins, which are compounds that are released from the lining of the uterus, as it prepares to shed it’s uterine lining wall. This is what causes the dull, and sometimes sharp pain.
Even though this is a vital part of a woman’s reproductive system, it can be as uncomfortable as it is beautiful. Most women agree that they would do whatever it takes to moderate even a little bit of this pain.
Traditional Menstrual Cramp Relief with NSAIDS
Lots of women experience period cramps so intense that they can barely get out of bed. In these cases, you might as well make yourself comfortable, because you’re in for the long haul- Yes, Netflix- I’m. Still. Watching.
I’m sure many of have tried your traditional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) but has anyone ever read about the side effects? According to WebMD, there are numerous; dizziness, stomach pain, heartburn, headaches, ringing in the ears, rashes, liver problems, kidney problems, high blood pressure, and leg swelling. Pretty unpleasant, right?
It’s also important to note that higher doses of NSAIDS, coupled with long-term use, can increase the likelihood of such side effects. Some women have been popping NSAIDS every single month since they turned thirteen, for multiple times a day, several days in a row.
CBD to the rescue! While CBD has definitely been experiencing its time in the spotlight, it might actually be warranted to help with those pesky, painful cramps.
How to Use CBD for Period Cramps
Women have been using cannabis to deal with menstrual pain for a long time — legend has it that even Queen Victoria herself employed the help of this powerful plant for the very same reason!
Now, thanks to the passing of the Farm Bill, legalization of CBD is taking the U.S. by storm. As a result, more and more women have the opportunity to find extra modalities to help with painful period cramps, simply by incorporating CBD into their routine.
A simple Google search looking for CBD products to help with period cramps might leave you with more questions than you had before- there are so many options!
To help you navigate the overwhelming field of CBD products, we’ve outlined a few ways to help you try out how you can utilize CBD!
Enjoy a CBD Bath
One of the most common myths surrounding women’s periods, is that it’s not safe to take a bath while you’re menstruating.
There are numerous benefits of taking a hot bath while you’re on your period. Sitting in warm bath water will help increase circulation of blood in your uterus and release inflammation from your abdominal tissues.
Throw a CBD bath bomb into the bath with you, and you’ll be able to feel your menstrual cramps melting away with it.
When you’re experiencing painful menstrual cramps, it can also be very difficult to get enough sleep. The heat from your bath will not only help soften tense muscles, it will also encourage you to slow down, both mentally and physically, leading to a more nourishing and deeper sleep.
Give Yourself a CBD Fueled Massage
Women who suffer from menstrual cramps can also take advantage of the muscle-relaxing properties of CBD by applying a topical CBD balm to their lower abdomen.
A lot of women use heating pads to stop cramps; balms may help with the cramps, bloating and soreness accompanying your period.
The rubbing motion of applying a balm or lotion to your abdomen will help gently release the tension held in your uterus and will help deliver the extract more effectively.
Have Some CBD Chocolate
Why do women crave chocolate on their period? Magnesium deficiency!
Low levels of this vital mineral can have a large impact on how you feel during your menstrual cycle. Magnesium deficiency increases both the “contractility” of smooth muscle in your uterus, and the level of prostaglandins released, which are the inflammatory compounds that drive period pain.
Essentially, low levels of magnesium is a recipe for killer cramps. Luckily for us chocolate lovers, dark chocolate is high in magnesium.
If you decide to give in to your chocolate craving, try munching on a square or two of CBD dark chocolate! You’re not only helping your body replenish it’s much-needed magnesium supply, you’re helping reduce inflammation and menstrual pain.
Munch on a few chocolates throughout the month, in preparation for your period- and during- to fully utilize this delicious CBD treat.
Menstrual Cycle Complications
Primary dysmenorrhea (the clinical term for “painful period”) is the normal associated pain caused by your period.
Secondary dysmenorrhea is period pain with another root cause, such as a health condition like endometriosis.
For most women, discomfort during your period is a very normal occurrence. However, if you are experiencing more painful menstruation cramps than is normal for your body, or you are starting to bleed differently, it might be time to consult your physician. Please also consult your physician before trying CBD.
Painful menstrual cramps are not just annoying, they can wreak havoc on your personal and work life as well. Feeling confident that you’ll be able to tackle these painful symptoms naturally, makes all the difference in the world. If you’re looking for the best CBD for period cramps, look no further– period!