Once a month, like clockwork, your period starts. Or, back in the real world, your period starts unexpectedly just when you don’t want it. This is the week you’re going on holiday, and all you’ve packed is white shorts. Last month, you had an important meeting and your period decided to start right when you sat down in the meeting room. To make matters worse, your period is heavy. And when you say it’s heavy, it’s heavy. How you dream of being one of those girls who can predict exactly when their period is going to start. Or even just one of those girls whose period only lasts a day.
Whilst your period might be a monthly nightmare, there are things you can do. Keep reading to find out the options available to you:
Period Underwear is a stylish alternative to pads and tampons, and many are designed for a heavy flow. They’re especially useful if you tend to soak through your pad or tampon during the night, helping to prevent staining on your sheets. This can save you from having to replace your bedding too often and can also help you to stay asleep. Nobody likes rolling over onto their side during the night only to find their leg is wet, but period underwear can help to keep you from leaking as you sleep.
Contraceptives contain hormones that disrupt ovulation, meaning you may stop your period altogether. At the very least, birth control should help to reduce the heaviness of flow and can make your period irregular so that it occurs less than once a month. Make sure to consult your doctor before going on the pill long-term, as it can cause migraines and blood clots. Don’t worry about becoming infertile though – as soon as you stop taking your birth control, your period will start again and you’ll be able to get pregnant if you want to.
Iron tablets won’t reduce the flow of your period, but they can make you feel a whole lot better. Women who suffer from heavy periods lose a lot of iron, which commonly leads to anemia. Anemia can result in fatigue, aches and pains, pale skin, shortness of breath, muscle weakness and headaches, which to many women sounds exactly like the symptoms of a period. Taking iron should help to combat these issues, making your period more bearable. Alternatively, you can eat iron rich foods such as spinach, nuts, dark chocolate (yes, chocolate really does help), and red meat.
Periods, especially heavy ones, can lead to painful cramping around the stomach area. This is commonly caused by your muscles contracting as they deal with the hormones flowing through them, but you can help to relax them with heat. Hot water bottles are a great way to keep your muscles warm, as are warm baths. These are especially useful before bed as they can help you to sleep, which leads us onto…
A heavy period can take a lot out of you, quite literally. You will probably feel more tired than usual as your body tries to restore the blood it’s lost, so give it the help it needs by making sure you get all the sleep you can. Your body is working hard to replace the lost blood, and as most regenerative processes happen during sleep, you’ll be giving yourself a helping-hand. Some women say that exercise helps them to feel better during their period, but actually, you’ll only be forcing your body to divert energy into building muscle instead of replacing blood, which could leave you feeling fatigued and faint.
Heavy periods can be a nightmare to deal with, but they don’t have to disrupt your life completely. With these tips, hopefully you can blast through your period and make it out onto the other side even stronger than before.
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