If you know me, you know I’m all about holistic health. I’m also a woman, and women get menstrual cramps and have babies (I had a home birth just this year!). As a woman and as a mother, you have to go on with your daily activities whether you’re in pain or not. No sick days for mama haha! In an effort to keep these challenging moments drug-free, I’ve starting looking for alternative ways to ease period cramp relief and overall pain relief. I’m excited to share with you some new natural ways to cope with pain including how to ease period cramps. Does a pain-free period sound too good to be true? Yeah, I thought so too!
What Causes Period Cramps?
Period cramps are really uncomfortable and even painful, but they happen for a reason. Your uterus is expelling that unfertilized egg and all of the trappings for a baby had that egg become fertilized. It is actually contracting to shed that built up lining in there each month. That doesn’t mean that you have to be in pain. It’s said that when your uterus cramps, that’s what your body is using to expel everything that’s unnecessary. Think of it as cleaning your uterus out for your next cycle. In reproductive terms, that means that your egg didn’t become fertilized so your uterus is cleaning and preparing for your next cycle, which it sees as another chance to prepare for fertilization.
“As part of the normal reproductive cycle, a woman’s body prepares for pregnancy every month. Perhaps the most well-known part of this process is menstruation, also called a period, which is when the uterus sheds its lining,” explains Dr. Borchardt. “The purpose of this is to help prepare the uterus for receiving and nourishing a fertilized egg.”
Most people will experience cramps leading up to their period and maybe even a couple days into their period. Somehow, we as women, are expected to go on with life no matter the circumstances.
Estrogen Dominance Symptoms
Period cramps are pretty normal and pretty common, but some people have more intense period cramps than others and this could be because of a hormone imbalance. Check out the graphic below that shows some symptoms of estrogen dominance from @digestivereset
How to Ease Period Cramps
- If you choose to ease your period pains with tylenol or another over the counter drug, make sure that you are taking a Glutathione supplement. These pain relief drugs are great, but definitely have side effects, so that’s why I began searching for other ways to cope
- Heating pad on your lower back or lower stomach
- Red light therapy reduces inflammation and stress on the body and can allow for a better night sleep
- Exercise: I know that’s basically the last thing you want to do when you’re not feeling well, but the hormones from that workout can actually counteract cramps in my experience. Moderate activity, even like walking, is perfect for if you’re already feeling crampy but want to get out
- Acupuncture or chiropractor visit
- Fenugreek, dandelion root or ginger tea
- Eat an anti-inflammatory diet and drink a lot of water if you’re bloated. Bloating can actually make your period cramps worse. You can even go as far as using a water tracking app to make sur eyou’re getting the recommended 6-8 glasses per day.
- Reduce caffeine. Drinking caffeine can actually narrow blood vessels causing stronger pains and more adrenal fatigue, which in turn brings dizziness and discomfort. The goal is to stop that vicious cycle.
- Reduce stress: increased stress can actually lower your pain threshold. Let’s just say, we don’t want to do that right now! It makes everything feel that much more unbearable. Try yoga, meditation, quiet time, read your Bible, whatever you need to do to lower stress.
- Neurotransmitter blockers (the Jovi Patch is the one I use!)
So What Is The Jovi Patch?
Simply put, the Jovi Patch is a small round lavender patch that offers drug-free pain relief. You take the patch and adhere it to the area of your skin you feel is the source of your pain. This innovative device, created from military technology, relays electrical signals to your brain that block pain. The beauty of this little patch is that it’s completely non-invasive. You can easily and discretely wear your patch for period cramp relief while out in public! The pain patches are paper-thin, lightweight, and hide under your clothing with ease. You can even wear this patch through airport security without any hiccups. Not only has it been proven to relieve period pains, it can reduce any pain – think of a headache, a broken leg, a broken fingernail, a tummy ache, etc.
How Does It Reduce Cramps?
When we experience pain, the electric field in our body becomes unbalanced. Hang in with me here – we’re going to get a little scientific on you. This little patch identifies the electrical signals of discomfort made by our body and senses changes in our electric field. With the help of Jovi, your body can regulate energy and discharge excess energy through the patch, therefore expelling that “pain” energy & bringing drug-free pain relief. Period pain relief has never been easier.
Jovi also promises the patches last a long time – you may only ever need one! Believe it or not, this patch truly reduces pain without the use of Ibuprofen or similar over-the-counter pain relievers. No chemicals, no wires, no radiation exposure, nothing of the sort and that’s why it works for how to ease period cramps. Jovi is a completely holistic option! You can read more about their technology on their website here.
How Can I Use the Jovi Patch to Reduce Pain in my Birth?
After two previous unmedicated births in a birth center (read Grayson’s birth story here), I knew that I wanted to explore something new for drug free pain-relief when preparing for my home birth. Believe it or not, this little patch worked wonders in reducing pain during birth. I’m not kidding – this patch worked for pain relief like nothing else I’d tried before – and so quickly! As I started to get to the point where contractions were hard and I had to breathe through them, I put the Jovi patch on my back under my bra strap. Within a few minutes of applying the patch, I felt an immediate reduction in the amount of pain I was feeling – things became more bearable.
One of the most convenient features of the patch is that it’s water-resistant, so it survived the entire home birth process. Note: It is not water-proof and I was very careful to not put it somewhere that would get submerged into the birthing tub. I’m so grateful I had the Jovi Patch on hand to support my drug-free home birth and I’ll save this for how to relieve period cramps and other aches and pains in the future
Get more of my holistic pregnancy and motherhood tips on this comprehensive blog post!
If you ever read reviews of the Jovi Patch, you’ll see mostly positive reviews, like 99% positive reviews. You will notice that there are people who say they have trouble finding a good spot to put the patch to actually get that drug-free pain snd period cramp relief. This is where you’ll need to troubleshoot. For some people (the vast minority), research shows that they need to move the patch to a totally different location to experience pain relief. For example if you’re having a headache & you aren’t feeling pain relief with the patch on the back of your neck, try placing it on your shoulders, upper back, or chest. Pain can emanate from a completely different location than we would originally think. For me, when I first started using the patch during labor, I had it on my stomach & I didn’t feel that it was doing anything. So I went ahead and troubleshooted for myself & applied it to my back. My first really hard contraction came at 2:45. Baby was here at 3:19.
As always, make sure to consult your doctor before using Jovi as this is not medical advice. Let me know how you’re doing on your journey to period cramp relief!
Make Your Own Heating Pad
You can even make your own heating pad with rice or beans and a sock.
- Take a long sock
- Fill with dry beans or rice
- Tie or sew the open end leaving some room for the contents to move around (We like to tie ours so that we can untie and reuse the sock if need be)
- Heat the sock for 2-3 minutes and then apply to your stomach or lower back
Use Essential Oils
I personally have a strong relationship with oils because they helped me with my anxiety when I had postpartum anxiety after having Grayson. You can read more about that soon!
Oils I’d recommend for period cramp relief and general drug free pain relief:
- Ylang Ylang: it’s an anti-anxiety and a mild sedative (for lack of better way of putting it)
- Clary Sage: this oil helps your uterus contract in a more efficient way helping the pains to pass quicker. It is also soothing and can help balance your estrogen production
- Geranium: a pain reliever and muscle relaxer
- Peppermint essential oil shouldn’t be left off the list when talking about period cramp relief. It is great for headaches and nausea and is known as a mood booster. Can I get an amen? haha
Foods that May Help
- Nuts and seeds
- Whole grains
- Red Meat
- Beef Liver Supplements
- Legumes, including beans, lentils and chickpeas
- Oranges or a good whole food vitamin C supplement (I love Perfect Supplements and you can use my code KAIT10 for 10% off!
Bad Cramps Could Be a Sign of:
- Fibroids in your Uterus
- Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
- Ovarian Cysts
If I was experiencing really bad cramps myself, I would look into ways to eat an anti-inflammatory diet and heal from within. Don’t jump to the worst case scenario. It’s typically just normal cramping or estrogen dominance that can be healed from within.
Other Period Signs: PMS
- Tender breasts or underarms
- Cravings for certain foods
- Irritability or inability to handle stress
- Not feeling very social
- Need for connection and coziness
- Skin problems (cystic acne is typically a sign of hormonal imbalance)
You can use all the coping methods above to relieve PMS symptoms as well as limit sugar and fat intake. Practicing an anti-inflammatory diet during your time of the month can drastically lower these symptoms for many people. Did you know that PMS affects 90% of women in some way? Just so you know, you’re not alone. We’re all in this together!