For many women, menstrual pain is an unwelcome monthly visitor that can disrupt daily life and lead to discomfort. While over-the-counter painkillers are a common go-to solution, they often come with side effects and may not provide the relief needed. In recent years, there has been a growing interest in alternative approaches to managing menstrual pain, and one such option is CBD. In this blog, we'll explore the challenges of menstrual pain, how CBD may offer relief, and the considerations for using CBD as an alternative to painkillers during your menstrual cycle.
Challenge of Menstrual Pain
Menstrual pain, scientifically termed dysmenorrhea, is a common challenge that many women face during their reproductive years. It is characterized by cramping or discomfort in the lower abdomen and can vary significantly in intensity and duration. Some women may experience mild and manageable menstrual pain, while others endure severe and terrible discomfort.
Dysmenorrhea affects between 45 and 93% of women in adulthood, according to research surveys. It is more common and more severe among women under the age of 20. Furthermore, according to some statistics, 10 out of every 100 women have menstrual cramps sufficiently severe to affect their daily routine for several days every month.
Types Of Menstrual Cramps
Menstrual cramps are classified into two groups by doctors:
- Menstrual pain produced by uterine contractions of the muscles during a period is known as primary dysmenorrhea. Women under the age of 30 are more likely to suffer from primary dysmenorrhea.
- Secondary dysmenorrhea occurs when fibroids, polyps, and different benign growths, along with disorders such as endometriosis, induce menstrual cramps. This is more prevalent in women over the age of 30.
What Are The Symptoms?
Women may also experience a range of additional symptoms that further compound the challenge of menstrual pain. These symptoms can include:
- Throbbing or cramping pain in the lower abdomen that can be intense
- Pain that starts 1 to 3 days before your period, peaks 24 hours after the onset of your period, and subsides in 2 to 3 days
- Dull, continuous ache
- Pain that radiates to your lower back and thighs
- Loose stools
Over-the-Counter Medications for Pain
Over-the-counter (OTC) medications for menstrual pain are non-prescription drugs that can help alleviate the discomfort and pain associated with menstruation. These medications are readily available at pharmacies and stores without the need for a doctor's prescription. Here are some of the most commonly used OTC medications for menstrual pain:
Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin): Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that can relieve pain caused by cramps. NSAIDs, like ibuprofen, help block the production of prostaglandins in your body. So, they target the cause of menstrual cramps.
Naproxen (Aleve): Naproxen is another NSAID that treats cramps. It works similarly to ibuprofen, treating the cause of menstrual cramps by blocking the production of prostaglandins in your body.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol): Acetaminophen is a pain reliever that can help alleviate mild to moderate menstrual pain. Unlike NSAIDs, acetaminophen does not reduce inflammation.
The Problem with Painkillers
The available painkillers indeed be effective in providing short-term relief, but they are not without their share of problems and limitations:
Potential Side Effects: Prolonged or frequent use of over-the-counter painkillers can lead to adverse side effects. For instance, ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and can irritate the stomach lining, potentially leading to gastritis or even ulcers.
Liver Damage: Acetaminophen, when taken in excessive amounts or over a long period, can harm the liver. This vital organ is responsible for processing and detoxifying various substances, including drugs.
Dependency and Tolerance: The overuse of painkillers, particularly opioids, can lead to dependency. However, the risk of dependence is a serious concern, as these drugs can be highly addictive. Additionally, over time, the body may develop a tolerance to opioids, requiring higher and potentially unsafe doses for the same level of pain relief.
Incomplete Relief: Painkillers do not always provide complete relief from menstrual pain. Some women may find that these medications only partially alleviate their discomfort or provide temporary relief, necessitating repeated daily dosages.
The Search for Natural Alternatives
The search for natural alternatives to conventional painkillers has led to the exploration of cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD. CBD is a natural compound derived from the cannabis plant, and it has gained significant attention for its potential therapeutic benefits. Unlike its psychoactive counterpart, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD does not induce a "high" or alter one's state of consciousness. Instead, it interacts with the endocannabinoid system in the body, a complex network of receptors and molecules involved in regulating various physiological processes, including pain perception and inflammation.
How Does CBD Help In Managing Menstrual Pain?
According to one 2020 review research, CBD is tolerated well and considered a safe natural substance that has analgesic effects in a variety of animal pain models along with clinical studies. There are several studies that support CBD in providing menstrual pain relief. Some benefits of using CBD are:
Anti-Inflammatory Properties: CBD has demonstrated notable anti-inflammatory properties in both laboratory studies and anecdotal reports. CBD may help reduce inflammation in the uterine area, which can be a primary cause of discomfort and cramping during menstruation. By targeting and mitigating inflammation, CBD may alleviate menstrual cramps and pain.
Pain Management: CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, specifically with receptors like CB1 and CB2. These receptors play a vital role in modulating pain signals and the body's perception of pain. By influencing these receptors, CBD has the potential to reduce the sensation of pain, making it a valuable option for managing the discomfort associated with menstrual pain.
Muscle Relaxation: Menstrual cramps often result from the involuntary contractions of the uterine muscles. CBD has muscle-relaxing properties that can help ease the tension and discomfort associated with cramps. This muscle relaxation can lead to reduced pain and an overall sense of relief during menstruation.
Minimal Side Effects: CBD is generally well-tolerated by most individuals. This is a significant advantage, as it makes CBD an attractive option for those seeking natural pain relief without the risk of experiencing the adverse effects commonly associated with traditional painkillers.
Versatility: CBD is available in various forms, offering individuals a range of options to choose from. Common forms of CBD products include tinctures, capsules, creams, and edibles. This versatility allows individuals to select the method of consumption that aligns with their preferences and provides the most effective relief.
Where To Find A Quality CBD Product?
At India Hemp Organics, we understand how vital it is to live a healthy, happy, and confident life. That is why we would like to introduce - The CannaBliss: Menstrual Pain Relief. This oil utilizes a strategic combination of ingredients that work together to address the challenges of menstrual pain. Hemp Seed Oil lies at the core, is rich in essential fatty acids, reduces inflammation, and influences pain perception. While Vijaya leaf oil interacts with skin receptors to enhance circulation and alleviate discomfort.
This unique blend of 10 herbs brings together a selection of carefully chosen components known for their pain-relieving and soothing properties. Those herbs include:
CANNABLISS LEAF EXTRACT: Reduces pain by interacting with skin receptors and boosting local circulation. This reduces discomfort and promotes a soothing sensation for targeted pain relief.
HEMP SEED OIL: Rich in linoleic acid, alpha-linolenic acid, and gamma-linolenic acid, Hemp Seed Oil works to diminish inflammation and has the potential to regulate how the body perceives pain.
SESAME OIL: Contains natural compounds like sesamin and sesamol. They have anti-inflammatory properties which nourish the skin, improve blood flow, and soothe discomfort.
PEPPERMINT OIL: With its active compound menthol, Peppermint Oil offers a cooling sensation. It helps to reduce pain by numbing the area and calming muscle tension.
CAMPHOR OIL: It acts as a natural and effective anesthetic that numbs the pain enhances circulation, and provides a warming effect that soothes discomfort.
EUCALYPTUS OIL: Eucalyptus Oil's main component, eucalyptol, holds anti-inflammatory and analgesic qualities. It works by bringing a cold or warm sensation that takes the mind off the pain.
WINTERGREEN OIL: The predominant natural ingredient in Wintergreen oil is methyl salicylate which has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties.
AJHWAIN OIL: Ajwain seed oil contains thymol which is an antispasmodic, antirheumatic, and stimulant. This reduces muscle spasms and promotes relaxation.
CLOVE OIL: Contains eugenol, an active natural anesthetic, and has anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it an effective muscle relaxant.
CAPSICUM OIL: Contains a chemical called capsaicin which provides relief from a shooting or burning pain in the nerves and generates warmth by increasing blood flow.
CBD presents a promising alternative to traditional painkillers for managing menstrual pain. Its potential to reduce inflammation, alleviate cramps, and provide pain relief with minimal side effects makes it an attractive option for those seeking natural solutions. However, it's crucial to approach CBD use responsibly, consult a healthcare professional, and choose high-quality products to ensure safe and effective relief. As research on CBD continues to expand, it may become an increasingly valuable tool in the toolbox for managing menstrual discomfort and improving overall well-being.