Women go through that phase of the month when we have to deal with mood swings, cramps, back pain, bloated stomach and other discomforts. Depending on your health, lifestyle, diet and other factors, your menstrual period can last anywhere from three to seven days.
But menstruation and all its aches and irritations can come at the very worst times, like if you’re going on a vacation, have an important meeting to attend or planning a romantic weekend getaway.
Luckily, there are several ways to reduce the length of your period as well as the discomforts of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and menstruation.
Here are the top 10 ways to stop your period early.
1. Apply Heat
Applying some heat on the abdominal area encourages menstrual fluids to leave your body faster, thus making your period end sooner.
It also relaxes the contracting uterine muscles to help ease painful cramps.
- Place a heating pad or a hot water bottle on your lower abdomen for 5 to 10 minutes at a time. Use it 3 or 4 times a day.
- Soak a towel in warm water, wring out the excess water and place it on your lower abdomen. Keep the towel in place until it cools down. Repeat as needed.
- Taking hot showers or baths 2 or 3 times a day during your period also is effective.
2. Massage with Oil
Massaging the abdominal muscles relaxes uterine contractions and diverts blood away from the uterus to help stop your period early.
It also helps reduce the discomforts associated with your cycle, such as cramps and bloating.
- Mix 6 drops each of clary sage oil and lavender oil in 3 teaspoons of warm almond oil.
- Gently massage the abdominal and pelvic areas with this oil blend until it is absorbed into the skin.
- Repeat a few times daily until your period is over.
3. Take More Vitamin C
A diet rich in vitamin C helps reduce the level of the hormone progesterone in your body. This helps the uterine lining break down faster, which leads to shorter menstrual cycles. It can also help ease menstrual discomforts.
Also, vitamin C helps your body absorb iron and helps strengthen blood vessels.
- Incorporate more foods rich in vitamin C into your diet. Some good sources of vitamin C are lemons, oranges, bell peppers, dark leafy greens, kiwis, broccoli, berries, grapefruits, tomatoes, peas and papayas, to name a few.
- You can also take a vitamin C supplement, but only after consulting your doctor. An overdose of vitamin C supplements can cause side effects, including an upset stomach, diarrhea and insomnia.
4. Have Intercourse
Having an orgasm through intercourse or masturbation is another easy way to get your period to end early. It can also reduce cramping and other discomforts.
When you have an orgasm, it generates uterine muscle contractions, which helps move menstrual blood out of the uterus. As the uterus sheds the blood and tissue more quickly, your menstrual cycle will be shorter.
Bear in mind that having intercourse during a period can be a messy affair, so be mentally prepared for it.
5. Take Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin, naproxen and ibuprofen can help reduce the swelling of the uterine walls. This in turn reduces the heavy menstrual flow and pain associated with it.
These over-the-counter drugs help reduce overproduction of a group of hormone-like lipid compounds called prostaglandins that promote uterine muscle contractions.
You can take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs 2 or 3 times a day, being careful not to exceed the maximum dose as indicated on the package.
Consult your doctor before taking NSAIDs or using them for an extended period of time, as they can have side effects. In fact, they also have harmful effects on fertility. Also, they can interfere with other medications.
Body weight plays a prominent role in determining the length of your menstrual cycle and the amount of menstrual blood flow.
Women who are physically fit and have less body fat will naturally experience shorter and lighter periods. On the other hand, overweight or obese women tend to have longer and heavier periods.
So, if you are carrying a few extra pounds and want to have shorter or pain-free menstrual cycles, a regular exercise routine can be very beneficial.
Exercising even during your menstrual cycle can help increase blood circulation in the body, which in turn will help reduce painful cramps and shorten your period.
Also, exercise helps relax the uterine muscles to stop or at least reduce blood flow.
Moreover, maintaining an exercise routine will promote overall health. A brisk walk or jog of 25 to 30 minutes, yoga stretches, weight training, cycling or swimming are good exercises for women.
7. Drink Ginger-Infused Water
The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can reduce the production of prostaglandin, a hormone released during menstruation that causes the uterus to expel its lining tissue. This in turn helps shorten your cycle.
- Soak 2 tablespoons of crushed ginger pieces in 1 cup of hot water for a few minutes.
- Strain it and add 1 tablespoon of honey to the ginger-infused water.
- Drink the ginger decoction while it is warm.
- Drink this 2 or 3 times a day during your period to help stop it earlier than usual.
8. Drink Raspberry Tea
Raspberry is rich in astringent properties, which works as a uterine stimulant and stimulates uterine contractions which helps improve the menstrual flow out of the uterus. It also relieves painful menstrual cramps.
Plus, this herb contains several minerals and vitamins that are beneficial for a female body.
- Boil a handful of fresh raspberry leaves in 2 cups of water. Let it simmer on low heat for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Let the decoction cool, then strain and drink it.
- Drink a cup of this 2 or 3 times on the first day of your period.
9. Take Hormonal Birth Control Pills
You can take oral birth control pills or get the birth control shot to help regulate and shorten your menstrual cycles.
Hormonal contraceptive pills inhibit ovulation and fertilization, which in turn affects the uterus when no shedding of the uterine lining is triggered.
Start taking the hormonal pills one cycle before the period that you don’t want to have. To help skin your period, stop taking the last week of the pills. Also, these pills are helpful in reducing cramps and other discomforts associated with periods.
Bear in mind that prolonged intake of hormonal contraceptives can cause headaches and hormonal imbalances in the body, as well as putting you at greater risk for cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Hence, before you start taking birth control pills or other contraceptives, it is best to see your doctor to help you determine which option is best for your lifestyle and medical needs.
10. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking a lot of water and other healthy fluids will help shorten your period as well as reduce discomforts, such as bloating and cramps. Water intake helps the fluids run faster through your body.
Also, drinking sufficient water improves the body’s metabolism and keeps you hydrated.
To help you figure out how much water you should be drinking, simply divide your current body weight by two. That’s how many ounces of water you should drink a day. For example, if you weigh 140 pounds, you should try to drink 70 ounces of water on a daily basis.
Drinking green tea, fresh fruit and vegetable juices, and coconut water are also good options to increase your fluid intake.
Stay away from caffeine, alcohol and carbonated drinks, which can be dehydrating and can cause menstrual problems.
- Ditch your tampons, as they block the internal flow of menstrual blood and make your period last longer. Using sanitary napkins during your period can help end menstruation faster.
- Add a small amount of gelatin to a glass of water and drink it quickly. It can stop your period for about 3 hours.
- Mix 2 teaspoons of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar into a cup of water and drink it 3 times a day during your period for best results.
- Comfrey tea is another good herbal remedy to slow down your menstrual cycle.
- Eat foods rich in potassium to regulate your flow and make your periods lighter and shorter, too.
- Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
- An iron deficiency can cause heavy menstrual periods. So, eat foods rich in iron like molasses to help regulate menstrual flow.
- Avoid hot and spicy food during your menstrual cycle.
- Coconut oil is loaded with antioxidants and essential fatty acids that can regulate the menstrual cycle. Eat 1 to 2 teaspoons of organic coconut oil a day.
- To prevent bloating during periods, limit your salt intake.