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7 Things Making Your Period Worse

7 Things Making Your Period Worse

As Karen Quan once said, “Push my buttons, and I’ll push you off a bridge.”

For many women, it’s the darkest time of the month. According to new research, many overlooked habits could be making your period worse, from caffeine and alcohol to work anxiety. However, thanks to a recent study, figuring out which habits are making your period worse just got easier.

According to Glamour, Mental Daily, an online psychology magazine, surveyed 2,000 young women between the ages of 18 and 29 to find out which habits made menstruation more painful. Utilizing Facebook ads and Survey Monkey, Mental Daily was able to determine that work anxiety, caffeine, and smoking were the biggest contributing factors affecting participants’ menstruation.

The researchers over at Mental Daily revealed a lot about how bad habits can significantly affect menstruation — enough for me to compile a list of the worst ones. So, without further ado, here are seven things making your period worse.

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1. Work Anxiety & Stress

Researchers have always noted that anxiety or stress originating from the workplace is the biggest contributor to bad menstruation cycles. Also, work anxiety ranked number one as the greatest contributing factor which made menstruation worse, based on Mental Daily’s survey.

Of the 2,000 participants in Mental Daily’s study, 98 percent placed work anxiety or stress as one of their top triggers for a bad period. Essentially, mental health professionals have warned that job stress can increase the risk of depression and even suicide.

2. Caffeinated Drinks

In Mental Daily’s survey, 78 percent of participants placed caffeine as one of their top triggers for severe menstruation, for several reasons. Let me explain: caffeine, specifically soft drinks like Pepsi, can increase the chances of painful cramps and nighttime fatigue. Insomnia, a common symptom of cramps, can keep you up all night, draining you of your energy when it’s time to get up to work.

3. Smoking Your Lungs Away

When it comes to menstruation, smoking is a big no-no! Here’s why: smoking can impact your estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone levels. Those hormones play a crucial role in the development of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), which may leave you looking like the devil.

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Additionally, smoking is often mixed with drinking alcohol, and alcohol is another adverse factor in making your period worse. Since we mentioned alcohol, let’s talk about it.

4. Consuming Alcohol

Hands off the booze! Why? Drinking alcohol right before your period can exaggerate the risk of PMS symptoms, and they’re not pretty.

Drinking alcoholic beverages can also dehydrate you and lower your magnesium levels, which is not good news. Other symptoms caused by alcohol includes mood swings, depression, headaches, and breast tenderness.

5. Skipping On Sleep

Yes, PMS can cause insomnia due to the amount of pain brought forth by cramps. However, there are several things you can do to help you fall asleep quicker. But first, let me explain why skipping sleep during your period is a bad thing.

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Your sleep-wake cycle has a tremendous influence on regulating sex hormones, so when you disrupt this cycle, you are messing up this process. And get this: your period may last longer if you decide to skip sleep while on your period.

Now, if you feel it’s going to be a long, dreadful night, try melatonin. Melatonin is a natural hormone that improves your sleep regulation cycle.You can purchase it at any local pharmacy or drug store.

6. Painkillers

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but taking painkillers can make bleeding worse. Aspirin is one of those drugs that doesn’t mix well with menstruation; however, other over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like Ibuprofen can do less harm to your body.

Dr. Nupur Gupta, a consultant Gynecologist, and Obstetrician, gave the following comment when speaking to The Health Site.

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“You should only take a pill if the menstrual pain is affecting your day-to-day activities. And before taking one, you should always consult a doctor about the same.”

7. Salty or Fatty Foods

And, last but not least, consuming salty or fatty foods can cause bloating and abdominal cramps. Foods high in fat can alter the hormonal levels in the body. Here are the following foods to ignore: fatty cuts of beef, whole-milk dairy products, sausages and burgers.

Instead, try eating fish, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, which don’t affect your hormonal levels. Also, reducing the amount of salty or sugary foods can boost your immune system and reduce fatigue during menstruation.

Final thoughts: As science continues to improve our understanding of how the human body works, pain by menstruation will be a thing of the past. If we’re lucky, and still alive by then, I’ll still take male menstruation any time of the month!

Do these habits sound familiar? Share your thoughts below!

Featured photo credit: Huffington Post via i.huffpost.com

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Jose Florez

Mental Health Writer

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Last Updated on October 6, 2020

6 Signs It’s Time to Change Your Life

6 Signs It’s Time to Change Your Life

Is it time to make some changes in your life? It just might be. Life is too short to not live it to the fullest.

Here are some signs it’s time to change your life.

1. Every week, you cannot wait for Friday.

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    Fridays are fun, but one thing I’ve discovered in my quest to find and do work I absolutely love is that almost every day can be really fun. If you’re saving all your living for the weekends, it’s time to truly think about your lifestyle and consider making some changes. Don’t get me wrong; it’s great to have plans you look forward to on the weekends, but what if you could have that excited Friday feeling most, if not all, days of the week? It takes a lot of self-discovery and work, but it’s truly possible to live a life you love—even on Mondays.

    2. You live for your vacations.

    Vacations are great, but what’s even better is building a life you don’t need to take a vacation from. As Seth Godin said, “Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don’t need to escape from.” Vacations are fun and exciting, but even better is building a life where you have the potential to do what lights you up many weeks of the year, not just your two allotted vacation weeks.

    3. When you stop and think about it, you’re really not focusing your life on your priorities.

    Write down your 3 top priorities. Then write down the 3 things you focus most of your life on. Are you spending your time living your top priorities? Consistently spending time doing what matters most to you is one of the keys to feeling fulfilled in your life. If you’re not focusing your life on what’s important to you, it’s time to make some changes.

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    4. You have no idea what lights you up, and you don’t have the space in your life to discover it.

    If you haven’t found your passion in your current life, you’re not going to find it if you continue to do your same routine, over and over, year after year. In order to discover what lights you up, start by creating the space in your life to seek it. Give yourself time to figure out who you are, what your strengths are, and what picques your interest. Experiment with learning new things, spending time with inspiring people, and doing more of what excites you and less of the things that suck your energy.

    5. You’re frequently jealous.

    If you find yourself frequently feeling jealous of someone, there are 3 changes to consider making:

    1. Make a point to focus on your path instead of his or her journey. Sometimes this involves taking a break from social media.
    2. Get inspired from the person you’re jealous of, and work toward a similar goal in your life.
    3. Decide what the other person has is not something you are willing to put in the effort to achieve, so you’ll cheer him or her on but choose to not be jealous.

    When you are feeling jealous, consider why you want what the other person has, and what your motives are. Living a life on your terms, focused on your priorities, passions, and strengths, will provide you with much more fulfillment than trying to be somebody else.

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    6. You can’t remember the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone.

    According to Neale Donald Walsch, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Your life can become even more amazing if you stretch beyond your comfort zone. If you’re not sure where to start, try the tips in this article about small ways to step out of your comfort zone.

    Life is too short to spend your years not living to your full potential. If you decide you’re ready to change your life, I encourage you to start taking small action steps toward the life you want to live. Keep moving forward.

    Check out this video if you’re ready to make a change in life:

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    Featured photo credit: Lauren McKinnon/https://flickr.com via flickr.com

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