Last Updated: March 19, 2015

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Definition - What does Dysmenorrhea mean?

Dysmenorrhea is a medical condition that manifests itself as excessive pain during menstruation. This condition can be severe enough for patients to require medication. Unlike regular period pains, dysmenorrhea can interfere with the sufferer’s daily activities. This condition varies in terms of intensity, frequency, and duration. The primary symptoms include a sharp stabbing pain in the lower stomach and uterus accompanied by nausea, lightheadedness, or extreme exhaustion. Dysmenorrhea can occur before or during menstruation.

Kinkly explains Dysmenorrhea

Dysmenorrhea is sometimes accompanied by menorrhagia which is another condition that triggers excessive blood loss during menstruation. While women often complain of pain in their uterus and lower stomach, they may also experience a dull ache in the umbilical, left, or right abdomen. Very often, the pains radiate to the lower back and thighs. It can encourage additional symptoms like constipation, disorientations, fainting, hypersensitivity, and diarrhea. In some cases, the symptoms can occur right after ovulation. It can also be triggered by abnormal hormonal levels.

While there is no cure for dysmenorrhea, there are some treatments that can alleviate the pain. Birth control pills, for example, have been shown to drastically improve this condition. However, since these pills are often accompanied by potentially dangerous side effects, several women choose to adopt a holistic approach to alleviate the symptoms. Hot stone massages, acupuncture and acupressure are among the most popular alternative remedies to dysmenorrhea.

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