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  • Writer's pictureLouise Bentley

Can massage help relieve period pain?

Most of us have been there, hugging the hot water bottle and wondering whether just pouring the still boiling kettle over your belly will be better, eating chocolate which we know won’t help the bloating but it’s SO much nicer than kale, thinking ‘yoga is meant to help this’ but you can’t actually move, and besides who can do yoga in their fuzzy pink dressing gown anyway? Sitting on the loo and bearing down because that takes some of the pain away, but you end up with explosive diarrhoea and spend half an hour just sitting there googling ‘will my GP let me have a hysterectomy’.... And then do it all again in around 28 days!

Sometimes it can be bearable, pop an ibuprofen and you can forget about it. Sometimes it’s debilitating, leaving the woman unable to function. Unless you have a diagnosis of, say, endometriosis, speaking to your GP doesn't usually offer any joy. The traditional approach for Primary Dysmenorrhea (period pain without any diagnosis - sexy isn't it!) is to go on the pill, which isn't always the answer we need.

Lots of women suffer from period pain - around 80% have reported experiencing painful periods at some point in their lives, with around 40% experiencing pain with every cycle. Just think about that - every month for a couple of days you have cramping in your abdomen, for the better part of 40 years.

As a Massage Therapist, and a woman who has suffered period pain across the whole spectrum, I’ve been looking into what I can do for others who suffer the same issues. I’m having great success offering abdominal massage throughout the month along with giving clients some treatment to do at home. This is reducing their pain before bleeding and during bleeding, along with reducing the occurrence of clots. This isn’t a ‘one and done’ approach, regular treatments are done, but hey, loads of us go to the gym/hairdressers/waxing salon monthly, why would you not have a regular period pain treatment?

I’ve also found that a treatment on your most painful day (mine is day 2 of my cycle - the day I could reach in and tear my innards out with my hands and be happy about it) Along with reducing stress, which has a knock on effect on our hormones making PMS worse, this massage treatment can help greatly. It includes some specially chosen aromatherapy oils, a very heavy heat pack and using various acupressure points.

So if you’re suffering from our lovely friend dysmenorrhea - rapper name Period Pain - please get in touch. I’d be happy to see you here at Gentle Wellbeing for a treatment, chat about your options or even just listen to you wail down the phone (for a while anyway), and let's see if we can make your period a bit happier!

Be well,

Louise x

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