Water Education - Water and Health

Menstrual Cramps and How Water Can Help

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The pain and discomfort of menstrual cramps is a very real concern for some women prone to severe cramping. About fifty percent of menstruating women experience cramps and fifteen percent of them experience pain that is difficult to manage. The pain occurring during these contractions can be mild, moderate, or severe. There are two types of menstrual cramps. The first kind is the natural cramping that occurs when ovulation occurs. The second type of cramping occurs when there exists an abnormal health condition in the reproductive system that is causing more pain during the menstrual cycle. Menstrual cramps are caused by contractions in the uterus muscle. The uterus is a pear-shaped organ where a baby grows. This organ contracts throughout a whole menstrual cycle and once the contractions are too strong it causes pain. The reason these contractions are occurring is that the lining in your old uterine is breaking down. The contractions cause the uterus to press against nearby blood vessels which cut off the oxygen supply to the muscle tissue. Pain results when part of a muscle briefly loses its supply of oxygen.

Menstrual Cramp

Many menstrual cramp sufferers turn to the age-old folk treatments that have helped women suffering from the same health issue throughout history. Apple cider vinegar, when added to purified water, kills some micro-organisms both in the drinking water as well as in the body. So if clean water is not available to drink, adding apple cider vinegar is helpful when added to tap water. Vinegar can also help create the right ph balance in the body.

Water pollution and contamination may also play a role in many health issues that affect women like severe menstrual cramping. Contamination of our drinking water often occurs when the groundwater has been in contact with trace levels of man-made chemicals. Some of these chemicals imitate estrogen as observed in laboratory studies. These are called xenoestrogens. They can be found in plastics too. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) is investigating reports that have shown that increased exposure to xenoestrogens is causing girls as young as ten to start menstruating. Further evidence has shown that sewage runoff into rivers can contain chemicals that are known as estrogen receptors. Since these are often the same water sources where we get our drinking water, the question arises if this can be the cause for such early puberty in young girls.

Many women retain a significant amount of water before and after their menstrual cycle. There are statistics indicating that for some it is as much as three to six pounds of water weight. This bloating is a typical side effect for women prone to PMS as well as those who do not have this affliction. Water retention for some women is a common monthly discomfort and it may have an effect on the severity of menstrual cramps.

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