When to Seek Medical Advice for Period Discomfort
Many girls who are nearing their first menstrual cycle have heard about how uncomfortable this time in their lives can be. The experience is different for each woman, which can make it harder to know what is normal and what is a sign that something is wrong.
What Is Normal Menstrual Pain?
Pain is not uncommon during your period. Some women experience pain that can make it difficult to continue their normal routine. It usually only lasts for a few days per cycle.
Approximately half of women will experience pelvic discomfort during periods. This is generally mild and can usually be solved by taking an over-the-counter pain reliever like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Applying heat in the form of a hot water bottle or heating pad to your lower back or stomach can also alleviate pain.
What Is Abnormal Menstrual Pain?
If you experience severe discomfort that requires you to call off work or skip school regularly, then this may be a sign that something is wrong. It is not normal to experience such intense pain that you are unable to function during your cycle.
When Should I Talk to a Doctor about Menstrual Pain?
If your menstrual cycle is incapacitating, you should talk to a doctor. That’s especially true if the recommended dose of over-the-counter pain medications is not helping. Never take more than the recommended dose, unless directed to by a medical professional.
Other signs that something is wrong include pain that lasts for more than a few days or appears when you aren’t having your period. If you have questions about menstrual pain, contact Women’s Health and Menopause Center to make an appointment.