Aunt Irma (or Aunt Flo) is awful. The words I want to use to describe her are quote inappropriate and colorful, so I'll let you use your imagination. After more than a decade of dealing with Aunt Irma every month, I've found a few ways to deal with her.
Here are some tips and tricks that I use every month to combat the hell week. Please remember that I'm NOT a doctor. I figured out some of these tips on my own and also by consulting with my MD, you should always talk with your doctor before using any new herbal supplements or painkillers. Common sense people!
*Track your periods
This takes a few months to figure out, but track the day your periods starts and then average how many days between so you'll be able to predict when your next period will be. There are a lot of smart phone apps that do all the work for you. I just use my Google Calender. If you have inconsistent periods, keep in mind that tracking can be a bit tricky.
My MD told me this trick. It's a lot easier to combat pain if you hit it before it hits you. Start taking medicine before your period starts. After you start tracking your period, figure out the day it is supposed to start. The morning you expect your period, take an Aleve and then go about your day.
Drink it like it's going out of style! You're losing a lot of fluids that need replacing.
I have cramps from Hell. If don't take any medicine I literally cannot function. Some people choose to stay away from drugs when Aunt Irma comes to town. I'm not one of those lucky ladies. Premsyn Premenstrual Relief is the best drug formulated for periods that I've come across. Technically, it's a PMS drug, but it works better than anything else I've ever taken. You can find it at most grocery stores or at Amazon.
This is why I avoid Midol, because most kinds of Midol contain caffeine. I know personally that it is VERY DIFFICULT to avoid caffeine especially during the work week. But if you avoid caffeine starting a few days before your period, your cramps won't be nearly as bad as if you do drink caffeine.
I take 1,000 mg of Evening Primrose Oil every day. It helps alleviate cramps. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to do any good if you only take it during your period, but I have noticed that my cramps aren't as bad if I take it nearly every day. You can find it at most grocery stores or at iHerb.com.
Now, I'm still a really awful person to be around thanks to mood swings and being an all-round emotional wreck. I've found it's best to schedule fun, relaxing things when I know my period is coming up. Get plenty of sleep; there's nothing worse than being sleep deprived and anti-social!
I hope you all have lovely periods, or if you're looking this information up for someone else, I hope she has a lovely period!