Getting her period
can be an exciting time for a girl. But even girls who can't wait to experience the milestone are stopped in their tracks when they first experience menstrual pain.
Menstrual pain, or menstrual cramps, are caused by the contraction of the uterus. Some girls may never experience cramps, but for others, menstrual pain is a part of the monthly cycle. For these girls, the pain brings aches in the lower back, the abdomen, the pelvic area, and sometimes even in the upper thighs.
Fortunately, most menstrual discomfort is normal, but there are times when the pain can be associated with disease or other gynecological problems. If your tween suffers from severe menstrual pain, be sure to discuss the matter with her pediatrician.
For mild cases of menstrual cramps, consider the treatments below.
Easy Ways to Ease Menstrual Discomfort
Mild exercise can sometimes cut the pain. Encourage your daughter to go for a walk around the neighborhood. Stretching and yoga can also help ease her pain.
A warm bath or shower can also reduce or ease menstrual cramps. Give your daughter permission to stay in the bathroom as long as she needs to allow the warm water to do it's magic.
Many girls find relief from pain by applying a heating pad to the aching area. Be sure the pad is set to medium or low heat, to avoid burning of the skin.
Many over-the-counter pain killers are very effective against menstrual cramps and pain. Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen sodium (Aleve) are widely used for the relief of cramps. Be sure you do not offer Aspirin products to anyone under the age of 20, as it can increase the risk of Reye's syndrome, a potentially serious disease. With any medication, be sure it's taken correctly, and do not overlap any medications without first consulting your doctor.
If you don't know which medication to offer your daughter, a quick call to her pediatrician or to your local pharmacy should help you decide on an appropriate treatment.
Go easy on your tween when she's in the midst of menstrual cramps and pain. The pain can at times become severe, and girls may need time alone in their rooms, or time to relax in front of the television, while waiting for the pain to subside. A hot cup of herbal tea, or a cozy blanket, may help her get past her pain a little faster.