BY GABRIELLE LICHTERMAN –
Key finding: Study shows that drinking 8.5 cups of water daily reduces menstrual cramp pain and shortens the length of menstrual bleeding compared to drinking 7 cups or less.
, FEBRARY 23, 2021 —Do you experience menstrual cramps most cycles and wish there was an easy way to prevent the stabbing, aching, throbbing pain? Simply drinking more water throughout the day may be the solution. Sound too easy to work? Read on.
- 0.1 Can drinking water make your period lighter?
- 0.2 Why did my period only last 1 day?
- 0.3 Why is my period only 2 days?
- 1 Can you shorten your period naturally?
- 2 How long do periods last?
- 3 Can stress shorten your period?
- 4 Are short periods bad?
- 5 Why is my period so little?
- 6 How many glasses of water should you drink on your period?
Is drinking a lot of water good for your period?
Summary – Period cramps are a pain at best and debilitating at worst. Find out more about seven drinks you can make at home to lessen your cramps every month. Anyone with a uterus knows that menstruation is not for the weak. Your monthly cycle often comes with fatigue, mood swings, bloating, headaches, and, of course, the infamous uterine cramps.
Menstrual cramps are caused by natural hormone-like substances called prostaglandins, which trigger contractions and inflammation inside the womb. Needless to say, it’s an uncomfortable time of the month that calls for supportive actions, such as increased rest, heated bean bags, and soothing drinks.
When you’re feeling tender and need some comfort, reaching for a menstruation-friendly drink can help boost energy levels, decrease bloating, and, most importantly, ease menstrual cramping. Here are seven easy-to-make hot and cold drinks you can make at home to support your body during your period.
When it comes to naturally restorative drinks, water will always be at the top of the list. No matter what your body goes through, proper hydration means being more equipped to manage any type of physical discomfort—including menstrual cramps. Water helps prevent bloating, reduces fatigue, and supports the circulation system for a faster, less painful bleed.
Dark chocolate with 70% cocoa or higher has a surprisingly rich and diverse nutrient content. It contains significant volumes of magnesium, iron, potassium, and antioxidants that help regulate blood flow, hormonal fluctuations, and pain management. However, now is not the time to reach for a sugary, highly processed hot chocolate product from the store.
Ginger and Lemon Tea
If you’re feeling bloated, sore, and nauseous, a steaming cup of ginger and lemon tea can help. Ginger is renowned for its uplifting anti-inflammatory properties that relieve menstrual cramps and even soothe an upset stomach. Some studies even suggest ginger is as effective as ibuprofen for muscle pain.
Fresh lemon also comes with powerful health benefits. Naturally alkaline, lemon is great for soothing the stomach upset that often arrives with your period, and it pairs well with ginger both taste-wise and nutritionally for uterine support. Combine fresh, grated ginger and a generous squeeze of lemon with hot water for the best results.
Add a natural sweetener like honey if you prefer.
Also known as golden milk, this anti-inflammatory elixir is comfort in a cup. Turmeric is packed with powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that work wonders for menstrual cramps and a wide variety of other common ailments. Although better fresh, powdered turmeric is far easier to find at the grocer and will be plenty effective in a warm drink.
Carrot and Orange Juice
High fruit consumption has been linked to reduced period pain, Both oranges and carrots are rich in vitamin C, which plays a crucial role in how the body absorbs iron. This makes them ideal fruits to consume while on your period—a time when you tend to lose a lot of iron through cervical bleeding.
Chamomile tea is often used as a natural sleep aid. But its benefits don’t stop there. The compounds found within this floral tea (glycine and hippurate) have been linked to the relief of muscle spasms. This helps the uterine muscles relax, resulting in less cramping and tension.
Green fruits and veggies are always good for you, but they’re even better during your period. Drinking a delicious, fresh green smoothie at the start of your day or even as a pick-me-up snack will deliver an enormous nutritional boost that helps combat period-related ailments.
Dark leafy greens like spinach and kale contain iron and magnesium, while kiwi and bananas are loaded with antioxidants, zinc, and fiber. Simply blend frozen or fresh bananas with some leafy greens, kiwi, ice, lemon juice, honey, and the milk of your choice for a glass of creamy green goodness. A smoothie containing green fruit and veg will not only help alleviate cramping but can also be used to reduce stress and restore mental and physical energy.
Drinks To Avoid While Menstruating When it comes to managing period-related discomfort through food and drink, knowing what not to consume is crucial. These three drinks are best avoided while menstruating, as studies show they may only intensify cramping, headaches, bloating, and hormonal flux.
- High-sugar drinks (soda, energy drinks,)
While it can be difficult to deny yourself treats when your uterus feels like a pit of fire, exercising self-control in this area will ultimately contribute to an easier and less painful period. Drink Your Way To A Less Painful Period Periods are a less-than-fun part of life, but you can make them less painful by being selective about what you put in your body.
These drinks are delicious, easy to make, and designed with good uterine health in mind. If you’re taking a contraceptive pill or keeping a close watch on your cycle, you can even start drinking them in the lead-up to your period for extra relief. Staying hydrated, healthy, and well-rested will make every part of your period a little bit better.
And if doing so tastes good too, what’s not to like?
What shortens your period?
A shortened menstrual cycle could be caused by birth control, pregnancy, breastfeeding, perimenopause, and more. Women who track their period may be more likely to notice that their menstrual cycle is getting shorter. This article reviews possible reasons for a shorter cycle, when to notify your healthcare provider, and how they may reach a diagnosis when necessary.
Can drinking water make your period lighter?
Dehydration during menstruation – So we know that other factors can play a huge role in our menstrual cycle, but what about hydration? Water is crucial for all life, especially for the functioning of our bodies. Water is used to lubricate our joints, aid in digestion, maintain healthy skin, and more, including menstruation and the entire menstrual cycle,
- In fact, blood is approximately 83% water, and water makes up the majority of all human tissue.
- A semi-experimental BMC study found that water intake may have a modifying role in reducing the duration of menstrual bleeding and pelvic pain associated with menstruation.
- Healthy water intake, around 2,200 m l/ 9.5 cups a day for females, can prevent blood from thickening and in turn, cause a shorter, less painful period.
There isn’t much data on whether or not dehydration can actually delay the onset of your period, but we do know that dehydration may cause a longer, more painful period. While the results of this study are interesting, it’s important to note its limitations, including self-reported data, uniform study participants, and confounding variables such as diet, exercise, and alcohol consumption.
- Regardless of whether you’re menstruating or not, dehydration can cause fatigue, headaches, dry mouth, lightheadedness, and can lead to severe complications such as organ failure and death.
- There is increased fluid loss during menstruation which may exacerbate any effects of dehydration.
- Drinking plenty of water daily, and especially around your period or when exerting a lot of energy, is extremely important for the functioning of your entire body as well as making your period more manageable.
TL/DR: Increased water intake may alleviate painful period symptoms and decrease the duration of your period.
Why did my period only last 1 day?
1-day periods happen for a variety of reasons, from pregnancy and breastfeeding to medications and lifestyle changes. One day of bleeding is not necessarily cause for alarm. A ‘normal’ period is what’s normal for you. Regular periods last 2 to 8 days, and regular cycles are between 21 and 45 days long.
Why is my period only 2 days?
Other conditions – Less common conditions that may cause irregular or shorter periods include:
cervical stenosis, a narrowing of the passageway through the cervix premature ovarian failure (POF), also known as premature menopause Asherman syndrome, caused by scar tissue or adhesions inside the uterus or cervix anemia pituitary disorders uterine or cervical cancer
Young women going through puberty may have irregular periods for the first few years after they start menstruating. Another time when periods may become irregular is during perimenopause, This occurs quite a few years before menopause. According to the Cleveland Clinic, women can enter perimenopause 8 to 10 years ahead of menopause, meaning it could happen in your 30s or 40s.
Can you shorten your period naturally?
By staying fit and keeping active you might be able to shorten your periods as well as lightening your flow. Also during your period exercise is a great way to relieve any pain that you may be experiencing, as the body releases its natural painkillers- endorphins.
Why does your period stop when showering?
Photographed by Rockie Nolan. In high school, I would occasionally skip school when I had my period to spend the day hanging out in my bathtub. I mostly did it because I preferred bubbles and bath bombs to physics class — but I’d also heard a rumor that being submerged in water could stop my menstrual flow in its tracks.
- Yes, really stop it.
- Like the Christmas ceasefire during World War I or like Bruno Mars before he filled his cup with liquor in ” Uptown Funk,” But, as it turns out, I was just buying into one of many myths abound about menstruation.
- It is a very common misconception that a woman’s period will stop when she gets into the water, and that is not the case,” explains Temeka Zore, MD, OB/GYN, a reproductive endocrinologist at Spring Fertility,
“While I don’t know the origins of this myth, I imagine it has been perpetuated through the years due to this being a common experience many women notice while they are underwater.” The reason you may think you’re no longer bleeding whilst in the tub has to do with buoyancy.
Yes, the scientific phenomenon that allows something to float or sink, also known as upthrust. Buoyancy creates upward force that’s exerted on objects submerged in fluid. It’s the reason you have to keep paddling hard to stay at the bottom of the deep end to collect pool rings. It’s not magic, but physics.
(Hey, I didn’t skip every day.) “The pressure of the water can make it so the blood doesn’t actually flow out of the vagina,” explains Jennifer Linhorst, MD, OB/GYN, who’s based in Colorado. But you should still plan on wearing a tampon or menstrual cup to swim.
- Pads are made to absorb blood — that means they’ll also absorb water, which wont’ make for a comfortable dip in the pool,
- A cough or sneeze might overcome some of that pressure, allowing some to escape, perhaps especially if someone has a heavier flow,” Dr.
- Linhorst says.
- It wouldn’t be very noticeable in the water, but could still cause staining of one’s swimsuit.” Dr.
Zore adds that once you get out of the water, the bleeding will resume. There are plus sides to splashing around on your period. Hot baths can stimulate blood flow, which can ease cramps, according to Mayo Clinic, Plus, swimming in a pool or even jumping along with the waves in the ocean can be a form of exercise, which research has shown can reduce menstrual aches and pains,
How many days is a normal period last?
What are periods? – A period is made up of blood and the womb lining. The first day of a woman’s period is day 1 of the menstrual cycle. Periods last around 2 to 7 days, and women lose about 20 to 90ml (about 1 to 5 tablespoons) of blood in a period. Some women bleed more heavily than this, but help is available if heavy periods are a problem. Find out about heavy periods,
How long do periods last?
A period is the part of the menstrual cycle when a woman bleeds from her vagina for a few days. For most women this happens every 28 days or so, but it’s common for periods to be more or less frequent than this, ranging from every 23 days to every 35 days.
- Your period can last between 2 and 7 days, but it will usually last for about 5 days.
- The bleeding tends to be heaviest in the first 2 days.
- When your period is at its heaviest, the blood will be red.
- On lighter days, it may be pink or brown.
- You’ll lose about 20 to 90ml (about 1 to 5 tablespoons) of blood during your period, although some women bleed more heavily than this.
Read more about heavy periods, period pain, irregular periods and stopped or missed periods,
Can stress shorten your period?
If you’re experiencing chronic stress, you might notice changes in your menstrual cycle. In particular, stress can affect how heavy your flow is and the length of your menstrual cycle — your periods can sometimes stop completely. Stress might also affect your fertility.
Does a shorter period mean less fertile?
Short cycles, early or late onset of menstruation, associated with reduced fertility – Women with cycles of 26 days or fewer had reduced chances of becoming pregnant. Photo by greg801/iStock Short menstrual cycle lengths and early or late onset of menstruation are associated with reduced fertility, according to a new study led by Boston University School of Public Health (SPH) researchers.
- The findings in the journal Annals of Epidemiology are the latest from an ongoing internet-based study of more than 2,100 women trying to get pregnant.
- The new study used questionnaires to ascertain menstrual cycle characteristics and pregnancy status, in an effort to find links between the two.
- Some participants charted their menstrual cycles daily via an online program, Fertility Friend.
The study found that women who had cycles of 26 days or fewer had reduced chances of becoming pregnant, or fecundability. The average cycle length among participants was 29 days. Women who started menstruating at younger than 12 years old, or at age 15 and older, also had reduced fertility, compared with those who started at ages 12 to 13, the study found.
- There was little association between heavy or prolonged menstrual flow and fertility.
- In agreement with previous studies, we found that short menstrual cycles were associated with reduced fecundability among North American pregnancy planners, independent of age, irregular cycles, and history of reproductive illness,” the research team says.
“These results indicate that menstrual cycle characteristics may serve as markers of fertility potential among pregnancy planners.” The authors note that the menstrual cycle is characterized by processes in the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian system, and that short cycles may reflect a narrow fertile window or ovarian aging and are associated with a lack of ovulation.
A previous study among Danish women trying to get pregnant similarly reported an association between short cycle length and reduced fertility. Participants in the ongoing study, called PRESTO (Pregnancy Study Online), are 21 to 45 years old and have attempted to get pregnant for as many as six cycles.
The researchers track the women’s pregnancy status through bimonthly follow-up questionnaires. In a study published earlier in 2016, PRESTO researchers reported that women with severe depressive symptoms had a decreased chance of becoming pregnant, but that the use of psychotropic medications did not appear to harm fertility.
- Amelia Wesselink, a doctoral candidate in the SPH epidemiology department and data analyst for PRESTO, led the new study.
- Shruthi Mahalingaiah, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the BU School of Medicine and SPH assistant professor of epidemiology, was senior author.
- She is a specialist in reproductive endocrinology and infertility.
SPH co-authors on the study include Lauren Wise, Elizabeth Hatch, and Kenneth Rothman, professors of epidemiology, and Craig McKinnon, a doctoral candidate in epidemiology. Researchers from Aarhus Hospital in Denmark and the University of Utah also contributed.
Is 3 days period normal?
What are the four phases of the menstrual cycle? – The rise and fall of your hormones trigger the steps in your menstrual cycle. Your hormones cause the organs of your reproductive tract to respond in certain ways. The specific events that occur during your menstrual cycle are:
The menses phase: This phase, which typically lasts from day one to day five, is the time when the lining of your uterus sheds through your vagina if pregnancy hasn’t occurred. Most people bleed for three to five days, but a period lasting only three days to as many as seven days is usually not a cause for worry. The follicular phase : This phase typically takes place from days six to 14. During this time, the level of the hormone estrogen rises, which causes the lining of your uterus (the endometrium) to grow and thicken. In addition, another hormone — follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) — causes follicles in your ovaries to grow. During days 10 to 14, one of the developing follicles will form a fully mature egg (ovum). Ovulation : This phase occurs roughly at about day 14 in a 28-day menstrual cycle. A sudden increase in another hormone — luteinizing hormone (LH) — causes your ovary to release its egg. This event is ovulation. The luteal phase: This phase lasts from about day 15 to day 28. Your egg leaves your ovary and begins to travel through your fallopian tubes to your uterus. The level of the hormone progesterone rises to help prepare your uterine lining for pregnancy. If the egg becomes fertilized by sperm and attaches itself to your uterine wall (implantation), you become pregnant. If pregnancy doesn’t occur, estrogen and progesterone levels drop and the thick lining of your uterus sheds during your period.
Are short periods bad?
Three days of bleeding, which may seem short, is still considered normal as long as you’re menstruating regularly. That means that every few weeks, an ovary releases an egg and estrogen builds a thick lining in the uterus called the endometrium, which the body will shed if fertilization doesn’t occur.
- As long as a woman’s short menstrual period is part of a steady pattern and fits within this range, this is normal menstruation for her body.
- If your period lasts for three days, month in and month out, that’s your pattern,” says Maria Arias, MD, a gynecologist at Atlanta Women’s Specialists in Georgia.
Reasons for a Short Menstrual Period Estrogen is the all-important hormone required to create the endometrium each month. If you do not produce a certain amount of estrogen, that lining won’t be very thick and, when it is shed, “bleeding tends to be scant and for fewer days,” Dr.
- Arias says.
- Younger women may have short and irregular periods as they enter puberty, because their hormone levels, including estrogen, haven’t completely balanced out yet.
- Older women approaching menopause may also experience irregular or short menstrual periods.
- As women age, their ovaries stop producing estrogen and progesterone and therefore the endometrium fails to form.
Doctors treating women of childbearing age who are experiencing irregular periods will check for abnormal causes like an ectopic pregnancy, which is when a fertilized egg sits in a fallopian tube instead of the uterus. “If your period isn’t coming on time, the first thing doctors rule out is pregnancy,” says Arias.
A short menstrual cycle could also be due to the birth control method you use. Some of the more contemporary methods, like the hormonal intrauterine device that a doctor implants in the uterus, are designed to suppress the growth of the uterine lining, thus decreasing flow level. This is considered an additional benefit of some types of birth control,
Low weight, excessive exercising, eating disorders, and stress may also impact the duration and frequency of your menstrual periods. When to Call Your Gynecologist About Short Menstrual Periods If your irregular or short menstrual cycle is a new development and not your typical pattern, you may want to consult with your doctor.
- For example, says Arias, going 60 days without a period and spotting for just a few days is not normal.
- Hormonal problems stemming from the pituitary gland and hypothalamus (which can affect ovarian functioning), thyroid dysfunction, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) are just some of the conditions that can alter your menstrual cycle.
Usually these conditions are accompanied by other symptoms, so look for other changes to alert your doctor about. Keep track of your period in a journal or calendar if you’re concerned about a menstrual cycle that’s too short. This way you’ll have the most accurate information to share with your doctor and will be able to easily detect a menstruation pattern that’s not normal for you.
Why is my period so little?
Stress – Extended periods of stress can affect the body’s hormones, which can interrupt the regular menstrual cycle. Taking steps to manage stress can help a person’s periods return to normal. Most menstrual periods consist of about 2–3 tablespoons of blood.
However, there is wide variation among individuals, and it can be difficult to determine how much blood a person is actually losing. A person should make a note if their periods are lighter than they usually are. They can do this by keeping track of how many tampons or pads they use or tracking how much blood a menstrual cup collects.
The following may indicate a light period:
a period that is shorter in duration than is usual for the individualfewer pad or tampon changes than usualno usual heavy flow for the first 1–2 days but a consistent, light flowbleeding that resembles spotting over a few days instead of a steady flow
Sometimes, a light period may also cause a reduction in symptoms of premenstrual syndrome, such as reduced back pain, uterine cramping, or mood shifts. When a person starts using hormonal birth control, they may notice that their periods get lighter.
This reduction in blood flow may be because the hormone dosages in birth control pills are low and do not stimulate the uterus to build up a thick lining. As a result, a person may have a light period because there is minimal uterine lining to shed. This may also occur in people using the hormonal intrauterine device, contraceptive implant, or injection, as these cause thinning of the uterine lining.
People may experience some initial spotting between periods as the hormones start to help regulate their periods. In certain cases, a doctor may recommend that someone with light periods takes birth control to help regulate their cycle. Some types of birth control contain hormones that can help an individual’s cycle become more consistent.
Age: Young people tend to have lighter periods. Breastfeeding: This natural process may delay the return of periods after childbirth or lead to lighter periods when they do restart. Stress: High stress in someone’s life can affect the hormone levels in their body. PCOS: Certain reproductive conditions, such as PCOS, can affect hormone levels and menstrual flow.
A person may wish to talk with a doctor about individual risk factors that may affect the severity of their periods. Having a light period is not usually a cause for concern. However, if someone has consistently light periods or starts skipping periods altogether, they should talk with a doctor.
A person should also contact a doctor if a light period coincides with other symptoms that are causing concern, such as pelvic pain. In most cases, a light period is not a cause for concern. Several factors — such as diet, exercise, birth control pills, and health conditions — can cause a light period.
What is most important is that a person listens to their body. If someone is concerned about the duration of their menstrual blood flow, they should talk with a doctor for clarification and reassurance.
Is it day 1 of your period if it starts at night?
What if you get your period at night? – If you start bleeding in the evening or overnight, it can be confusing whether to count that as your Day 1 since there are just a few hours left in that day. For the sake of simplicity, I recommend that you do count that as your Day 1.
How many glasses of water should you drink on your period?
Alleviate Bloating – The period bloat – it’s a common symptom you can experience before and during your period, making you feel like you’ve gained weight or have a tight and swollen abdomen. Not cool period bloating, not cool. While there’s not a perfect cure, there are a few hacks you can do to help reduce bloating.1.
Water is your friend: It might seem odd that you need to drink more water when you’re feeling the most bloated, puffy and full, but the more water you drink, the better. There’s no specific recommendation of how much water each unique person should drink but a common guideline is to drink eight to ten 8-ounce glasses of water throughout the day.
If you’re on-the-go, be sure to carry a water bottle with you and try to fill it up several times throughout the day.2. Eat Healthy Foods: If you’re looking for what kind of food to eat on your period, then try reaching for healthier snacks like fruits and veggies or other low sodium foods that won’t make you balloon.
- Avoid eating processed foods and too much salt, your belly will thank you later.
- Processed foods can contain high amounts of salt and contribute to increased bloating, no thank you! Other safe bets for healthy eating are proteins like fish and chicken and healthy fats, like nuts and avocados.
- If you want (need) a little something sweet, consider dark chocolate – it’s a good source of magnesium, which can help regulate serotonin and elevate your mood.3.
Avoid Caffeine: Caffeine can also irritate your stomach and give you that achy, crampy, bloated feeling, so it’s best to limit your intake on your period. In addition to caffeine, it’s a good idea to avoid sweet and carbonated drinks that can also increase bloating.
A good caffeine-free drink option is herbal tea. Get a cup of hot tea (i.e. ginger, green tea, peppermint, chamomile, raspberry leaf) to reduce bloating and feel better on your period.4. Get in some exercise: Yes, this is probably the last thing you want to do. We get it. But, light exercise during your period can help increase your blood flow which can help alleviate period symptoms like bloating.5.
Catch plenty of ZZZs: Period fatigue is real and it can be further impacted by period pain. If you’re feeling tired during your period, getting good rest can help your body and mind repair. Aim to get at least 8 hours of sleep a night, especially while on your period.6.
What makes your period flow heavier?
Adenomyosis – With adenomyosis, the same tissue that lines the uterus (endometrial tissue) is present within and grows into the muscular walls of your uterus. In some cases, the cause of heavy menstrual bleeding is unknown, but a number of conditions may cause menorrhagia. Common causes include:
Hormone imbalance. In a normal menstrual cycle, a balance between the hormones estrogen and progesterone regulates the buildup of the lining of the uterus (endometrium), which is shed during menstruation. If a hormone imbalance occurs, the endometrium develops in excess and eventually sheds by way of heavy menstrual bleeding. A number of conditions can cause hormone imbalances, including polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), obesity, insulin resistance and thyroid problems. Dysfunction of the ovaries. If your ovaries don’t release an egg (ovulate) during a menstrual cycle (anovulation), your body doesn’t produce the hormone progesterone, as it would during a normal menstrual cycle. This leads to hormone imbalance and may result in menorrhagia. Uterine fibroids. These noncancerous (benign) tumors of the uterus appear during your childbearing years. Uterine fibroids may cause heavier than normal or prolonged menstrual bleeding. Polyps. Small, benign growths on the lining of the uterus (uterine polyps) may cause heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding. Adenomyosis. This condition occurs when glands from the endometrium become embedded in the uterine muscle, often causing heavy bleeding and painful periods. Intrauterine device (IUD). Menorrhagia is a well-known side effect of using a nonhormonal intrauterine device for birth control. Your doctor will help you plan for alternative management options. Pregnancy complications. A single, heavy, late period may be due to a miscarriage. Another cause of heavy bleeding during pregnancy includes an unusual location of the placenta, such as a low-lying placenta or placenta previa. Cancer. Uterine cancer and cervical cancer can cause excessive menstrual bleeding, especially if you are postmenopausal or have had an abnormal Pap test in the past. Inherited bleeding disorders. Some bleeding disorders — such as von Willebrand’s disease, a condition in which an important blood-clotting factor is deficient or impaired — can cause abnormal menstrual bleeding. Medications. Certain medications, including anti-inflammatory medications, hormonal medications such as estrogen and progestins, and anticoagulants such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven) or enoxaparin (Lovenox), can contribute to heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding. Other medical conditions. A number of other medical conditions, including liver or kidney disease, may be associated with menorrhagia.