The medical name for menstrual cramps, which are throbbing or cramping pains in the lower stomach area that can happen before and during periods.


Get enough sleep and rest. Ease stress. Get regular exercise. Take a hot bath. Or use a heating pad, hot water bottle or heat patch on the lower stomach area.

When to seek immediate medical care

See a healthcare professional right away if menstrual cramps happen with:

  • Heavy bleeding, such as soaking through one pad or tampon every hour or two.
  • An unusual change in the usual pattern of bleeding.

When to make a doctor's appointment

See a healthcare professional if:

  • Menstrual cramps affect daily life each month.
  • The symptoms keep getting worse.
  • Serious menstrual cramps start after a person turns 25 years old.