If you have ever experienced painful periods and menstrual cramps—called ‘dysmenorrhea’—you’ll know how utterly debilitating they can be. Lots of women suffer through this severe pain every month and assume that there is nothing much they can do about it other than pop a few pills. But that’s not true—you don’t have to endure it! Chinese medicine can be a very effective treatment for dysmenorrhea. It’s certainly a great natural alternative to taking bucket loads of anti-inflammatories every month.
In fact, with Chinese medicine and acupuncture, women of any age can eliminate pain and discomfort during menstruation.
What is dysmenorrhea?
Dysmenorrhea is defined as painful menstruation and menstrual cramps that occur in your stomach and pelvic area. Other symptoms can include headaches, nausea, constipation and diarrhea. You may even feel pain and discomfort in your lower back and legs.
The pain from dysmenorrhea can start several days before menstruation, and often reaches its most painful stage around 24 hours after bleeding commences. It will then usually reduce in severity as your period lessens.
In other words, you can suffer a high level of pain from dysmenorrhea for up to 3 or 4 days per month. That’s potentially 36–48 days per year when you may find it hard to live a normal life or do what you would normally do. So finding a way to reduce this pain is well worth investigation.
What causes Dysmenorrhea?
When your uterine muscles contract, they restrict the blood supply to tissues in your uterine lining. As they continue, they break down and squeeze the old, dead lining out of your body.
These contractions also cause a temporary oxygen shortage to nearby tissues, and this causes the pain and cramps you experience during menstruation.
Two types of dysmenorrhea
There are two types of dysmenorrhea: primary and secondary. Common causes for dysmenorrhea include:
- uterine fibroid
- ovarian cysts
- pelvic congestions.
So, if you haven’t already, it may be wise to consult your GP to discover the cause of your dysmenorrhea and whether you have primary or secondary dysmenorrhea.
Western medication for dysmenorrhea
If you suffer from dysmenorrhea, by now you’re probably well aware of the medication you can take. Doctors will often prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or hormone medications (oral contraceptives) to relieve menstrual pain. However, these drugs often only dull the intense pain, and lead to side effects including:
- an upset stomach
- peptic ulcers
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine for dysmenorrhea
The effectiveness of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine to relieve dysmenorrhea has been demonstrated for thousands of years.
Acupuncture is now widely accepted in western medical and scientific circles to be an effective treatment. However, the benefits of Chinese herbal medicine hasn’t been as accepted, despite promising results for dysmenorrhea with no side effects.
Treatment for Dysmenorrhea
Jane Ma, from Acunatural Health, can help relieve your dysmenorrhea. She combines traditional Chinese medicine with modern techniques to achieve the best results for all her patients.
When you attend a session with Jane, she will ask you questions and examine you in order to understand your history and current state.
In particular she will check your pain levels, and what you react to, as well as the nature and behaviour of your blood.
How effective is the treatment?
Many people suffering from primary dysmenorrhea will experience either no pain or significantly less pain during their first menstrual cycle after treatment. If you have secondary dysmenorrhea, you may need at least three menstrual cycles before you no longer feel pain.
Who needs treatment for dysmenorrhea?
Treatment for dysmenorrhea can help a wide variety of women. However, for some women it is even more important. For example, you should seek treatment if you:
- experience pain from fibroids (this can escalate to the point where a hysterectomy or other drastic measures may be recommended)
- experience negative side effects from the pill and IUDs
- are young (girls should avoid taking the pill to regulate their menstruation pain in the first two years)
- are worried about conceiving after taking the pill.
Book an appointment with Jane Ma
If you suffer from dysmenorrhea or bad period pain, contact Jane Ma at AcuNatural Health today. It might change your life.