Are You Using The Best Period Pain Treatment? (Probably Not)

Are You Using The Best Period Pain Treatment? (Probably Not)

This article was created by Girlboss in partnership with De Lune.

Here’s some quick math: If you menstruate, then you deal with menstrual symptoms roughly once a month, for a few days or a week. Maybe not so bad, right? But that adds up to anywhere from seven to ten years over the course of your reproductive years. Not exactly negligible, eh?

And let’s recall what those seven-to-ten years throw at us: pain (from cramps to lower back aches to joint pain) to a host of PMS symptoms (from irritability and anxiety to insomnia). There are over 150 (yep, you read that right) documented PMS symptoms recorded in medical literature.

And yet, the solutions for any of them are few and far between. When it comes to managing menstrual pain for most, options start and end in the painkiller aisle of the drugstore: ibuprofen, aspirin and other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). These meds are cheap, widely available and work for most people—the key word being “most.” Studies show that 18 percent of menstruating people are resistant to NSAIDs. 

Not to mention the FDA hasn’t been shy about the possible side effects of NSAIDs, which can range from a stomach ache to a heart attack, depending on how many you take, and how often.

Meet a New Kind of Period Pain Relief 

“Period pain is one big bucket,” says Courtney Mayszak, the co-founder of period relief brand De Lune. “And then PMS is this other bucket that includes everything else, basically. And we don’t understand PMS as well as we do the causes of menstrual pain.” Mayszak is a registered dietitian, and yet despite her robust education in the science of supplements and nutrients, she was “blown away” by how much she didn’t know about natural menstrual pain treatments.

So Mayszak hit the books. “Once I immersed myself in the research, I realized how many natural ingredients—herbs, vitamins, minerals—had already been shown to be safe and effective for period pain. But they were wildly under-utilized. Mayszak, along with co-founder Mimi Millard, got to work formulating what would become Cramp Aid, their signature product that offers natural menstrual pain relief.

“The first iteration was actually a tincture,” says Mayszak; the potent vitamins and nutrients were combined in an apple cider vinegar solution. From there, high-potency liquid capsules were developed, with the ingredients suspended in MCT oil, which is ideal for fast absorption.

The Science Behind The Solution 

So what’s actually in Cramp Aid? “There are three different vitamins, B1, B16 and B12. They’re the heavy-hitters. B1 has great evidence to treat period cramps. It can actually go head-to-head with traditional painkillers,” says Mayszak. Then there's zinc (also great for cramps) and other anti-inflammatory herbs like ginger and marigold. In a survey of De Lune users, 93 percent got relief from Cramp Aid—the vast majority in one hour or less.

So how do you know if Cramp Aid is right for you? De Lune has a handy quiz to help you based on your menstrual symptoms. “Yes, the muscle contractions that cause us to shed the uterine lining, and the discomfort that comes from that, is part of the normal process of menstruation,” says Mayszak, “but cramps that cause you  to miss work or school, or PMS that keeps you from being in a good mood? There’s nothing normal about that. We’re here to help.”

A New Way to Deal With PMS

Speaking of mood, that’s where De Lune’s other product, Steady Mood, comes in. “PMS is a big umbrella term, but we can address everyone’s unique PMS fingerprint by using ingredients that have been studied to reduce the physical, emotional and cognitive issues and help lower your PMS score.” No matter how your PMS manifests, you can find some relief. Steady Mood includes B6, which has been specifically studied for the emotional side effects of PMS, and magnesium, which helps regulate stress response and sleep cycles (for those who deal with insomnia during their period).

More than anything, Mayszak and Millard are on a mission to address the glaring gap in menstrual relief products for women—and provide safe, effective solutions that don’t come with a tradeoff. 

Curious about natural relief for your period? De Lune offers Girlboss readers 20% off with code GIRLBOSS20.

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