How Acupuncture and At-Home Remedies Can Help With Irregular Periods

Do you suffer from irregular menses such as painful periods, heavy flow, or none at all? The good news is, acupuncture and various at-home remedies can help relieve these monthly symptoms and possibly restore balance!

3 Types of Common Irregular Periods and Their Causes

There are two types of each irregular menstruation pattern mentioned below but we will be focusing on the “secondary” type.

Dysmenorrhea (painful periods)

This pattern is thought to be caused by many reasons but one includes excessive levels of prostaglandins, which are the hormones that make your uterus contract during menstruation and childbirth.  According to Chinese Medicine, it is believed that the severe pain is a result of stagnation or blockage.

Menorrhagia (heavy periods)

Common causes primarily include hormone imbalance, dysfunction of the ovaries, or polyps. There have also been many instances where those suffering from menorrhagia are linked to disorders such as anemia which may be a contributing factor to their heavy period.  It is strongly recommended to check with your primary care doctor to see if you have deficiencies in iron, vitamins A, C, K, or B complex.

Amenorrhea (scanty or no periods)

This pattern can be caused by many reasons.  Naturally, women don’t get their period during pregnancy and breastfeeding.  However, eating disorders and long periods of stress can cause scanty or no periods which can be caused by other underlying health issues.

Overall, irregular periods can have several causes, from hormonal imbalances to other underlying conditions, and should be thoroughly evaluated by both your medical doctor and health care practitioner.

How Acupuncture Can Help

Acupuncture is an excellent, gentle, and effective way of treating both the symptoms and root cause of your irregular period no matter which of the above mentioned patterns you suffer from! It can help regulate the feedback loop between your brain and body connection via communication between the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and ovaries.  This will help properly circulate the different hormones during each phase of your cycle to promote healthy, regular cycles. Acupuncture can also support the healthy growth of eggs, which leads to more regular phases of the cycle, thereby helping create a more reliable menstrual cycle. It also balances the primary hormones that regulate your cycle.  These hormones include estrogen, progesterone, LH, insulin and testosterone. For those suffering from painful periods, acupuncture is known to promote blood flow and reduce inflammation.

At-Home Remedies to Consider

There are many at-home remedies to treat irregular menstrual symptoms but most of them include some form of clean eating and exercise.  Take a look at the suggestions below and give some of them a try!

Dysmenorrhea (painful periods)

  • Avoid foods that contain caffeine.  Try a caffeine alternative such as green tea or matcha.
  • Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.  I think this one speaks for itself.
  • Massage your lower back and abdomen.  You can either ask a friend, loved one, or treat yourself to a nice massage!

Menorrhagia (heavy periods)

  • Stay extra hydrated by drinking water and electrolyte based drinks.
  • Eat vitamin C-rich foods such as red and green peppers, kiwis, and broccoli. Vitamin C helps your body absorb iron, which can prevent anemia.
  • Increase your iron intake by eating more iron-rich foods such as chicken, beans, and spinach.

Amenorrhea (scanty or no periods)

  • Eat a wide variety of whole foods to ensure proper weight maintenance and intake of necessary nutrients.
  • Eat foods high in B vitamins and essential fatty acids (EFA) to aid in healthy hormone balance and production. Some examples include kale (B vitamins), walnuts (EFA), and salmon (EFA)
  • Reduce your daily stress by regularly exercising, meditating, or doing yoga.

Regardless of which type of irregular period you suffer from, there are so many holistic ways to treat the symptoms and pattern as a whole.  It is important to remember that seeking professional help from your OBGYN or medical doctor should be done in combination with acupuncture and the at-home remedies listed above.  No need to fret ladies because there is so much hope for relief – you just have to find what works best for you!

References

“Dysmenorrhea Management and Treatment” Cleveland Clinic,

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/4148-dysmenorrhea/management-and-tre

atment. Accessed 26 March 2019.

 

“How to Stop Heavy Periods: 22 Options for Treatment” Healthline Newsletter,

https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-stop-heavy-periods#home-and-natural-remedi

Es. Accessed 25 March 2019.

 

“Menorrhagia (Heavy Menstrual Bleeding) Symptoms & Causes” Mayo Clinic Patient Care &

Health Information,

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menorrhagia/symptoms-causes/syc-20352829. Accessed 26 March 2019.

 

Rodriguez, Hethir “How to Get Your Period Back” Natural Fertility Info: Your Complete Source

for Fertility Information & Products, https://natural-fertility-info.com/how-to-get-your-period-back.html. Accessed 27 March 2019.

 

Santos-Longhurst, Adrienne. “14 Possible Causes for Irregular Periods” Medical News

Today, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322643.php. Accessed 26 March

2019.