When your period’s got you feeling blue, it’s tempting to think that only paracetamol and chocolate can help you out. But there are actually a whole heap of theories on alternative ways to give yourself life during that time of the month. The moon, crystals, essential oils, herbs, meditation… really, they’re all said to make a difference. Wanna know more about the things that can affect your period? Read on…
Lots of people believe that certain flowers and herbs can help with various health problems, and one way of harnessing their powers is to create oils from their seeds, leaves, bark and other parts. These oils are available from chemists and specialist shops and might have you feeling better in no time. They can be potent so always read the label to make sure you understand how to use each one safely. Don’t use them undiluted on your skin (or be tempted to have a taste, obvs).
1. Apparently, lavender oil can help balance hormones, relieve cramps and even lift your mood! Want to try this so-called wonder plant on those oh-so-many pesky period symptoms? Just add a few drops to a warm bath and inhale its gorgeous scent while you soak to feel its many benefits.
2. Peppermint oil claims to ease headaches. Try adding 4-6 drops of this zingy oil to a bowl of steaming water, then put it in your room while you chill out. Just breathing in the minty-fresh mist should help clear a PMS-fuzzed head.
3. Rose oil is said to bring on the calm. Use the technique above to inhale rose-perfumed air while you put your feet up. This one’s going to make your room smell completely amazing, too. Bonus!
While there’s little evidence that crystals actually have medical powers, it is widely accepted that if you believe that something can help you, it can actually make a difference. Some of the crystals that claim to help those time of the month troubles can cost some serious dollar, but others can be picked up for under a quid. If you’ve got a little hippy shop in your town, chances are they’ll have a few crystals in stock – and the staff might be super-helpful when it comes to picking them out, too.
1. Holding lapis lazuli is meant to help cramps. The bright blue gem claims to carry healing energy, so holding it against your achy bits could get those cramps to eff off.
2. Much like its essential oil cousin, rose quartz is supposed to help to clear the mind and bring relief from those monthly blues. It’s also one of the cheapest crystals you can buy, so there’s little to lose in giving it a shot.
3. Try turquoise under your pillow for restful sleep because this beautiful blue-green stone has been used for centuries to help with period probs! Crystal fans claim it can ease pain and bring calm.
Listening to your body throughout your cycle is super-important, and some people believe that the nasty side effects of periods can be put down to our failure to slow down and pay attention to our real needs.
1. We’ve all been there: you stayed up late doing homework, you’ve got a maths test, you’ve got to get a birthday present for your mum and you need to sort out an outfit for your mate’s party at the weekend. Your head is whirring, your eyes are drooping – and then, bang, your womb starts killing you, too. It’s not easy to drop everything and jump into bed, and it’s not guaranteed to make those cramps disappear either, but sometimes just slowing down for a couple of hours with a cup of herbal tea and a hot water bottle can work wonders.
2. Your period is a time to let go, and some people find that linking their TOTM with letting go of other worries and problems can be really helpful. It could be the perfect time to finally download a meditation app and let your mind and body work together.
3. A study into the link between meditation and reduced menstrual pain shows that having some quiet time to focus on your physical feelings (by practising mindful meditation) can actually make period pain bother people less. That’s not to say it’ll make it go away, but by concentrating on experiencing the feelings and accepting that they will only last for a relatively short time, it can apparently make the whole thing feel less awful. Worth a try, right?
It’s time you started celebrating your period, guys. Sign up to bettybox RN and get all your tampons and pads, beauty products, sweet treats and loads more cool stuff delivered to your door, every single month. We know. It’s totally awesome.
Image: Kate Borrill