There’s lots of symptoms people may experience throughout their menstrual cycle, from stomach cramps to bloating, or tiredness. However, leg pain is a symptom that can sometimes be forgotten about. We’ve shared ways to help alleviate PMS symptoms such as breast pain and period headaches, and now we want to explore why you might experience leg pain during your period, and what may help.
Is leg pain during my period normal?
Some mild leg pain during your period is completely normal and is a common PMS symptom. Period pains are caused when the blood vessels surrounding the uterus are under pressure. This causes contractions in and around the uterus which for many is felt as pain in the abdomen and lower back.
Leg pain, especially in your upper legs can be commonly experienced by some. This is because the contractions in your uterus can be transferred to the legs and thighs through the interconnected tissues, fibres and blood vessels in the body. Leg pain can also be a sign of other conditions, especially if it’s new symptom or significant.
When is leg pain during your period not normal?
If you are experiencing unbearable or long-lasting leg pain, there could be something more to it. If you experience any chronic conditions like sciatica, this can also worsen and feel more painful during your period.
Leg pain caused by endometriosis can start a few days before your period, and last until your bleeding has stopped. Endometriosis is a condition in which the lining of your uterus develops outside of your uterus. This tissue can get trapped or irritated when trying to leave the body each month causing extreme pain for the individual, including leg pain that can feel like a sharp stabbing pain.
If you are experiencing any leg pain that seems to last the duration of your period or is abnormally painful, it is sensible to seek medical advice. The worst period symptoms like cramps (and associated pain) should only last a couple of days at the start of your period and not feel debilitating to your everyday life.
How do I relieve leg pain during my period?
Like other period symptoms, leg pains during your period can be soothed by:
- Heat – Applying a warm compress, such as a hot water bottle or a heat pad to your tummy or abdomen can help soothe the pain by relaxing the muscles in the uterus and help relieve the pain experienced in your legs.
- Movement – Light and gentle exercise such as yoga or walking can help alleviate pain by blocking pain receptors in the brain and increasing blood flow.
- Massages – By stimulating blood flow in the abdomen through gently massaging the area, it can help relieve some discomfort in your stomach, backs, and legs. Or similarly, a warm bath will help do the trick too.
- Diet – Foods like vegetables, nuts, lean proteins, and wholegrains can help reduce pain. Particularly oily fish and seeds high in omega-3 fatty acids – these have anti-inflammatory properties which help with period cramps.
Do you have anything that helps when you experience leg pain during your period? Let us know in the comments 👇