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More Than Painkillers: Medicines And Supplements That Ease Menstrual Pain

More Than Painkillers: Medicines And Supplements That Ease Menstrual Pain

Dysmenorrhea, the pain associated with menstruation, is a common concern among women. Reports say its prevalence is between 16 and 91%, and that it is inversely related to the woman’s age, parity (number of children previously borne), and use of oral contraceptives. On the other hand, stress increases the risk of dysmenorrhea¹.

While many women do not seek medical attention for menstrual cramps, self-medication is a usual practice. If you’re looking for gamot sa dysmenorrhea, this guide might help you.

Treatment for menstrual cramps typically depends on the severity of the pain and how badly it limits the activities of daily living. Below are your options if you’re looking for a medicine for dysmenorrhea:

Pain Relievers

The first go-to gamot sa dysmenorrhea is a pain reliever. But, what kind of painkillers work?


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are usually the first choice. Some reports say fenamates, such as mefenamic acid, provide a slightly better efficacy than phenyl propionic acid, like ibuprofen and naproxen.

You can also consider aspirin, although the report said fenamates and phenyl propionic acid provide better relief than aspirin2.


Acetaminophen or paracetamol is also a reasonable gamot sa dysmenorrhea for women who cannot tolerate or have contraindications to NSAIDs.

Opioid Analgesics

Besides NSAIDs and acetaminophen, opioid analgesics are also an option, particularly if you have moderate to severe pain.

An example of an opioid analgesic is hydrocodone. Note that some brands of medicines contain both hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Examples include Vicodin and Lorcet.


Another popular medicine for dysmenorrhea are antispasmodic agents. They work by acting on the muscular layer of the uterus that experiences spasms that cause pain.

One popular example is Buscopan Venus³, which contains both the antispasmodic agent, Hyoscine-N-butylbromide, and acetaminophen3.

Contraceptive Pills

In some cases, doctors recommend oral contraceptives to prevent ovulation and reduce muscle spasms.

However, there are instances when the physician specifically recommends (or the woman prefers) other forms of contraception, such as a skin patch, an intrauterine device, or a vaginal ring.


Along with dietary changes (low fat vegetarian and slight increase in dairy), vitamin therapies might also work in reducing pain². Though it’s worth noting that dairy consumption can increase cramping for some.

Potential vitamins include B1 and B6 with fish oil, vitamin E, and vitamin D3.

Herbal Medicines

Finally, if you’re looking for gamot sa dysmenorrhea, you might want to consider herbal medicines under your doctor’s approval.

  • Valerian: It is reported that Valerian herb (Valeriana officinalis) has been used for painful menstruation since the 10th century.
  • Passion Flower: Passiflora incarnata or Passion Flower is another herb for painful menstruation, although it’s more popular for its calming and sedative-hypnotic effects.
  • Hops: Humulus lupulus is an herb used for digestion and as a diuretic, too. It is likewise used to treat restlessness, nervousness, and impulsiveness. Reports say it also has analgesic effects.

Valerian, Passion Flower, and Hops are not your typical gamot sa dysmenorrhea, but reports say they also have antispasmodic effects that help relieve menstrual cramps⁴.

Interestingly, many teas and supplements that promote sleep contain all these three herbs.

Gamot sa Dysmenorrhea: Reminders

If you plan to take an over-the-counter medicine for dysmenorrhea, be sure to read about the drug first.

In case you have an underlying condition (pregnancy, heart disease, etc.), or are taking other medicines, talk to your doctor first before deciding on the drug. This step is essential to avoid interactions. Case in point: aspirin may interact with blood thinners, and some herbs may interact with many other drugs, including anti-depressants.

Finally, don’t forget that there are other home remedies for menstrual cramps. These include:

  • The use of heat compress
  • Stress reduction or relaxation techniques
  • Exercise

Key Takeaways

Many women do not seek medical help for menstrual cramps, but self-medication is a common practice. If you’re looking for gamot sa dysmenorrhea, your options include pain relievers, antispasmodic agents, contraceptive pills, and herbal supplements.

When your cramps interfere with your daily activities, don’t hesitate to consult a doctor.

Learn more about Menstruation here.

Ovulation Calculator

Ovulation Calculator

Tracking your period cycle, determines your most fertile days and increases your chance of conceiving or applying for birth control.

Ovulation Calculator

Tracking your period cycle, determines your most fertile days and increases your chance of conceiving or applying for birth control.

Ovulation Calculator

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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

  1. The Prevalence and Risk Factors of Dysmenorrhea, https://academic.oup.com/epirev/article/36/1/104/566554, Accessed October 22, 2021
  2. Dysmenorrhea in adult women: Treatment, https://www.uptodate.com/contents/dysmenorrhea-in-adult-women-treatment/print, Accessed October 22, 2021
  3. Buscopan Venus, https://www.mims.com/philippines/drug/info/buscopan%20venus/mechanism-of-action, Accessed October 22, 2021
  4. Supportive therapy for dysmenorrhea: Time to look beyond mefenamic acid in primary care, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6881953/, Accessed October 22, 2021
  5. Dysmenorrhea Treatment & Management, https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/253812-treatment, Accessed October 22, 2021
  6. Menstrual cramps, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menstrual-cramps/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20374944, Accessed October 22, 2021
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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated May 11
Medically reviewed by Regina Victoria Boyles, MD