Most women will experience period pain at some point in their lives, causing painful, sometimes debilitating stomach cramps. …read moreSee less
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Can period pain give you back pain?
Although menstrual cramps normally cause period pain in your stomach, it can also give you lower back pain.
This is because the muscle cramps around your womb can affect your back muscles as well as stomach muscles, especially during particularly heavy periods.
Lower back pain during your period can also be a symptom of a condition called endometriosis, so if you’re worried that this may be affecting you, speak to your doctor as soon as possible.
Can you use an ovulation test if you have irregular periods?
Yes, you can.
Ovulation tests are more accurate if your cycle is regular, but they can still work if your periods are irregular - it just means that you’ll have to test more frequently.
Most women will only need to test once a month, but if your periods are irregular, you should start testing a few days after your period and then move on to once per week.
What causes period pain?
Period pain is extremely common, affecting most women at some point in their lives.
It can be extremely painful, with intense spasms in the stomach and pain that can spread to the back and thighs
During a period, the muscular wall of the womb starts to contract so the lining can shed.
When this contraction happens, blood vessels in the lining of the womb are compressed and the blood supply to the womb is temporarily cut off.
When there’s no blood supply, there’s no oxygen, and this causes the tissues in the womb to release chemicals that trigger pain.
When those chemicals are released, hormones called prostaglandins encourage the muscles in the womb to contract even more and the pain further intensifies.
Sometimes, certain medical conditions can make your periods heavier and more painful.
These include endometriosis, fibroids, pelvic inflammatory disease or adenomyosis.
What helps with period cramps?
If you dread the sharp, poking, cramp-like pain in your stomach each time your period comes knocking, you might be wondering the best ways to help ease it.
Taking over-the-counter pain medicine, like ibuprofen, can help to reduce bleeding and the severity of pain during your period.
Applying heat with something like a hot water bottle or a heating pad on your belly or lower back may relieve pain, in addition to reserving time to rest.