Managing Your Menstrual Cycle Naturally
A healthy menstrual cycle is important for pre-menopausal women for their comfort, wellbeing and peace of mind.
However, many females experience problems with their cycle at some point in their lives. From irregular periods, to premenstrual syndrome, there is an array of things that can make the menstrual cycle a source of stress for women.
When everything doesn’t run smoothly, there is a tendency to seek out medication in a bid to either correct the cycle or reduce menstrual symptoms. However, there are ways to manage the menstrual cycle naturally.
Creating a regular cycle
When reproductive hormones are unbalanced, the menstrual cycle will become irregular. There are lots of reasons why this may occur and it understandably causes concern among many women, who worry about the sporadic nature of their periods or the duration of their period when it arrives.
Hormone balance is important for overall health and when they get out of whack individuals may suffer from weight gain, tender breasts, sleep disturbances, mood swings, low libido, depression, and acne or oily skin, among other complaints.
To restore balance, women can seek natural remedies. Agnus castus and false unicorn root are two herbal supplements often recommended. The former is a known hormone-balancer and works with the pituitary gland, while the latter uses hormone-like saponins to balance estrogen and progesterone levels.
Certain essential oils are also believed to help restore hormone balance, particularly clary sage. This essential oil has an estrogen-like action, and women can start to see positive effects on their menstrual cycle by using up to eight drops to a warm bath. Many women find that geranium essential oil is also very helpful in re-balancing hormone levels.
Other essential oils help to treat the causes of hormone imbalance, such as anxiety and stress. Chamomile, lavender, juniper berry, bergamot and basil essential oils are well-known for their stress reducing and calming properties.
Treating the cause of hormone imbalance is important, and a healthy diet and exercise are often recommended for doing this. These help to reverse physiological stress, which is often the cause of hormone imbalance.
Managing premenstrual syndrome
Premenstrual syndrome is incredibly common among women and can dramatically affect the lives of those who suffer from it. The symptoms can manifest themselves physically, psychologically and behaviourally, which is why it can be so debilitating. Typical symptoms include: bloating, pain and discomfort in the abdomen, headaches, backache, muscle and joint pain, breast pain, trouble sleeping, mood swings, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, confusion/forgetfulness, clumsiness, restlessness, tiredness, decreased self-esteem, loss of libido and appetite changes/food cravings.
Luckily there are plenty of natural ways to combat premenstrual symptoms. Quinessence Pre-menstrual Synergy contains an expert blend of bergamot, geranium, marjoram sweet and German chamomile essential oils to harmonise emotions, soothe muscle cramps, and balance emotional extremes.
It can be used just before or during the menstrual cycle; simply add six to eight drops to a warm bath, agitate the water, ease into the tub, and relax. The heat from the water helps to relax physical tension, while the essential oils will work to reduce multiple symptoms. Alternatively, add four or five drops of Premenstrual Synergy to 10ml of carrier oil and massage into the abdomen to relieve muscle cramps and pain.
Essential oils are a great way to treat premenstrual syndrome as they produce no additional side effects. They work effectively to soothe abdominal and muscle pain whilst tackling the typical mood problems that occur during the menstrual cycle. Other useful essential oils for the menstrual cycle include angelica root, chamomile roman, melissa, and rose.
These oils can be used in several ways, individually, or in combination. Add a few drops to a diffuser or burner, or add eight drops to a warm bath. Alternatively, combine four to five drops with 10ml of carrier oil or lotion and massage the blend into the skin.
If you are suffering from period pains, stomach cramps or back ache, you may want to create a compress to ease the symptoms. Compresses are effective for pain relief and emergency first aid. Put four or five drops of essential oil into hot water and, using a folded piece of absorbent material, soak up the oil without fully immersing it in the water. Wring out any excess and apply to the affected area. Cover the compress with a towel or wrap with polythene.
Copyright © Quinessence Aromatherapy Ltd 2014. Written by Sue Charles