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Cramps are an inevitable part of almost every woman’s life. Each month, without fail, you feel your period before it begins. Cramps are usually felt in the abdomen or the lower back. They last anywhere from one to three days. For some women, cramps are merely a nuisance, something that is annoying but doesn’t affect your life. For other women, severe cramps send them to bed for a day or two each month. While you probably can’t totally rid your life of cramps, there are some things you can do to help ease the pain.
While you are having cramps:
Over-the-counter medications, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, usually help to lessen the pain.
Use a heating pad or a hot water bottle and apply heat directly to your abdomen or lower back.
Try different positions. You might find lying on your side with your knees bent helps relieve the pain or you might find another position feels better. Try sitting and lying down in different positions to find what works best for you.
It's back-to-school time, and for me, that means many things.
One thing the new school year means is a new cadre to disclose to. Thankfully I'm at the point in my graduate career where I am no longer taking classes. This considerably slims down the number of new people to potentially disclose to.
Another thing the new school year means is that I have a whole new crop of students to get to know; names to learn (assuming that my lupus mind can remember anything at all), papers to grade, and the inevitable drama that can ensue when teaching undergraduates.
Although between my office hours, my teaching sections, and the lecture for the class only takes up eight hours a week, the toll that it takes on me is immense. Many of my symptoms that had been gone for nearly a year are back. I've been exhausted and in pain. And I'm really frustrated by this.
The thing is, teaching, no matter when and where you do it, is ultimately a performance art. You have to be on all ...
Recently, we have discussed articles in the scientific literature that have raised concerns that prescription pain medications are at times being misused, if not abused. A recent article in the Annals of Internal Medicine reminds us that there are a lot of folks out there who are quietly suffering through their pain, and who perhaps are not being treated adequately for that pain. The article dealt with the pain of sickle cell disease, a genetic red blood cell disorder that most often affects individuals of African, Mediterranean, or Asian background. The pain of sickle cell disease can be extreme, to the point of disabling. It affects the bones, joints, back, abdomen, and chest. A sickle cell patient generally presents to the doctor with so-called "vaso-occlusive pain", which is episodic and commonly referred to as a "crisis." The more crises a sickle cell patient has, the greater the risk of death. But up until now, there has been l...
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