Causes of Dysmenorrhea

When the period is associated with the period it is called Dysmenorrhea. There are two types of Dysmenorrhea Primary and secondary dysmenorrhea.

During the menstrual pain or PMS and period symptoms, diet is vital. However, eating healthily while on your period can make difference. Many of our cravings are erratic, extreme and unhealthy, and the foods we eat can have a huge impact on our bodies. During menstruation and pre-menstruation, our hormones are all over the place and our bodies already feel like they’re falling apart, so it’s really important to make sure that the diet taken during the periods is perfect.

There are two types of dysmenorrhea: primary dysmenorrhea and secondary dysmenorrhea.

Primary dysmenorrhea is pain that comes from having a menstrual period, or “menstrual cramps.”

Primary dysmenorrhea usually is caused by natural chemicals called prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are made in the lining of the uterus.

Secondary dysmenorrhea is when it has menstrual cramps that are caused by the condition, such as a reproductive disease, a structural abnormality, or an intrauterine birth control device. This type of menstrual pain is often more severe and longer lasting than the cramps due to dysmenorrhea cause only or period pain only. Without a medical exam, it can be difficult to determine whether or not the pain you are having is caused by primary or secondary dysmenorrhea.

However, there are some signs that may help you to determine if your menstrual cramps are caused by secondary dysmenorrhea.

Women with primary dysmenorrhoea tend to have raised levels of prostaglandins, which cause more intense contractions of the uterus than normal. The reason for rise in the level of prostaglandins are not yet known.

Some of the causes of secondary dysmenorrhoea include:

endometriosis – the cells lining the uterus can move to other areas of the pelvis, but behave differently, causing severe pain during periods
fibroids – benign tumours made of muscle and tissue can grow inside the uterus and are thought to be affected by the sex hormones. In the majority of women, fibroids are asymptomatic (cause no symptoms)
adenomyosis – the presence of endometrial cells growing in the muscle layers of the uterus. Adenomyosis is difficult to treat.

The Dysmenorrhea cause and remedies

But the main reason for the Menstrual cramps happen mostly because of contractions in the uterus, or womb, which is a muscle. If it contracts too strongly during your menstrual cycle, it can press against nearby blood vessels. This briefly cuts off the supply of oxygen to the uterus. It’s this lack of oxygen causes your pain and cramping. Therefore the basic remedy will always be some exercise for Dysmenorrhea.

What can be done to avoid Dysmenorrhea

If you have mild menstrual cramps, take aspirin or another pain reliever, such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen. For best relief, you must take these medications as soon as bleeding or cramping starts.

Heat can also help. Place a heating pad or hot water bottle on your lower back or tummy. Taking a warm bath may also provide some relief.

You should also:

Rest when needed but don’t rest all the time.
Avoid foods that contain caffeine.
Preferably don’t use tobacco or drink alcohol.
Massage very tenderly your lower back and abdomen.

Women who exercise regularly often have less menstrual pain. To help prevent cramps, make exercise a part of your weekly routine.


Author is professional gynecologist from Mumbai, India. She wants to create a sense of awareness against painful periods amongst young & adolescent girls, spreading the message – periods are normal, period pain is not.

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