Dysmenorrhea is a female sexual health issue in which a woman undergoes painful periods.
Dysmenorrhea is a female sexual health issue in which a woman undergoes painful periods. Painful periods are caused due to uterine contractions. The severity of pain varies from woman to woman. Young women have issues with periods. Sometimes, they have heavy and painful periods that affect their daily routine activities. The condition is even worsened when it accompanies mood swings or acne.
Types of Dysmenorrhea
The female sexual health issue- dysmenorrhea is further divided into two types as follows:
In this type of dysmenorrhea, the pain occurs recurrently during or before the menstruation cycle and has no other cause. The recurrent pain usually occurs a day or two before you have your period and lasts for 12-72 hours. The pain travels through the lower abdomen, back to the thighs. The severity of pain varies in women. It can be accompanied by other conditions such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue. Generally, the pain reduces with age and may completely stop after giving birth.
In this type of dysmenorrhea, the pain usually occurs due to issues in the woman’s reproductive organs. The issues or disorders can include infections, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, cervical stenosis, or adenomyosis. It does not include other conditions such as diarrhea, fatigue, nausea, or vomiting. The pain in secondary dysmenorrhea begins earlier and lasts for a longer time as compared to primary dysmenorrhea.
To conclude, it can be said that primary dysmenorrhea refers to recurrent pain and secondary dysmenorrhea is caused by reproductive system disorders. Both of the female sexual health issues are treatable.
Symptoms of dysmenorrhea
The symptoms of dysmenorrhea may vary in women during their menstrual cycle due to their sexual health conditions. A few common ones are listed below:
- Stinging or sharp pain in the abdomen
- Severe pain in the lower back and hips, traveling towards the thighs
- A feeling of pressure in the abdomen
- Nauseous feeling
- Weakness in body
Causes of dysmenorrhea
In both types of dysmenorrhea, the causes are different.
Primary dysmenorrhea is usually caused by uterine contractions due to prostaglandin. During menstruation, the uterine contractions become more intense and severe. The strong uterine contractions cause the nearby blood vessels to press against each other resulting in a loss of oxygen supply to the muscular tissues in the uterus. Pain occurs due to the loss of oxygen supply.
Secondary dysmenorrhea is the result of issues in women’s reproductive organs. The causes of secondary dysmenorrhea are listed below:
- Uterine fibroids
It is a condition in which the internal walls of the uterus grow tumors.
Infection such as pelvic inflammatory disease is caused due to bacterial growth at the start of the uterus that spreads in other reproductive organs.
It is a condition in which the lining of the uterus is present out of the uterus.
It is a condition in which the endometrium grows into the muscle of the uterus.
- Cervical stenosis
The condition in which the opening of the uterus narrows is called cervical stenosis.
When to see a doctor?
If you are experiencing severe menstrual cramps that have been lasting for more than 2 days, you must contact your doctor or healthcare provider. It is not important whether you experience the symptoms of primary or secondary dysmenorrhea, just see a doctor!
Diagnosis of dysmenorrhea
Your doctor will ask you to describe your symptoms and the menstruation cycle. They can perform a pelvic exam to check your vagina, cervix, and uterus for any lumps or other disorders through a speculum. The vaginal fluid can be taken as a sample for testing. On the diagnosis of secondary dysmenorrhea, your doctor may prescribe other tests to discover the treatment.
There are several ways to treat your female sexual health issue of dysmenorrhea depending upon the symptoms you are facing. Basically, you have to help the intensity of menstrual cramps to lessen so that you are in less pain. Some of them are written below:
- You can take ibuprofen, aspirin, anti-inflammatory pills, or any other pain reliever if the pain is uncontrollable as soon as your period or cramping starts.
- Use a heating pad or hot water bottle to soothe pain in your lower back or abdomen.
- Take proper rest if you require it.
- Avoid consuming foods with caffeine.
- Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.
- Massage the pressure points in your abdomen and lower back.
- Make regular exercise a part of your routine. It will help you feel less menstrual pain.
- Use of oral contraceptives
If any of the above treatments do not work, it is possible that your doctors suggest you take oral contraceptives. It is actually a method of birth control, but it also helps to reduce menstruation pain.
- Use of hormone replacement therapy
Hormone replacement therapy can be used to regulate the menstruation cycle and help to reduce the cramps due to primary dysmenorrhea in a year usually. You can find hormones in the forms of pills, patches, rings, shots, implantation, oral medicines, etc., from the harbor compounding pharmacy. These hormones are basically used as contraception so they prevent ovulation, hence reducing the severity of pain felt by you.
Your doctor will tell you which one of these methods is suitable for you. If you are looking for a doctor near you, then consider contacting the harbor compounding pharmacy. You can visit the harbor compounding pharmacy online for more information.
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