Getting a good night’s sleep on your period can be ridiculously hard. And, of course, being tired will only make you feel more irritable and angry at the world, while still having to cope with the dreaded “shark week”. Who said being a woman was fun?
Indeed, we all struggle to sleep well when we’re on our periods. This could be down to anything from bad cramps, to a heavy flow and worrying about leaking — particularly if you’re staying at someone else’s house. Luckily, there are plenty of easy but effective ways to help you nod off. These are those; our 6 IDEAL tips on how to get a better night’s sleep while on your period.
HUG A HOT WATER BOTTLE
We’ll start with a classic; the tried and tested hot water bottle. Hot water bottles are probably one of the best investments you’re ever going to make in the fight against period pain; one of the best ways of alleviating painful cramps and achiness, make no mistake.
This is because the heat from the hot water bottle helps to relax the muscles of the uterus when you hold it against your stomach or lower abdomen. It also boosts blood circulation around your body, which helps to stop your muscles from cramping. If you want a soothing night’s sleep on your period, then a hot water bottle is the answer.
EMBRACE FLOWER POWER WITH SOME HERBAL HEROES
Who would have thought herbs could help with sleeping better while on your period? Well, a lot of people actually. Indeed, lavender in particular is amazing for calming your body. The power flower’s essential oils have healing, anti-inflammatory properties, and are used by people around the world as a natural remedy for everything from anxiety to stress to insomnia to menstrual pain relief. So, if you’re struggling to reach those all important eight hours, then try using a few drops of lavender essential oil on your pillow or rub it into your wrists. The soothing scent of this herbal hero will help you to relax and get some natural, quality shut-eye.
Equally effective are herbal teas, which can also help you to relax after a stressful day (check out these other stress-busting methods) and get you ready for bed. Try out chamomile, which not only has soothing properties and can help you to fall asleep, but can also help reduce menstrual cramps.
PROTECT YOURSELF FROM LEAKS WITH PERIOD UNDERWEAR
Paranoid about leaks? Aren’t we all. Waking up to yet another stain on your beautiful white bedsheets is not just one of the most infuriating parts of being on your period, but it can also be super embarrassing if you’re a guest at someone else’s house.
This worry and stress about leaking can really impact your sleep, stopping you from getting a good night’s rest. Tampons can be uncomfortable (and you shouldn’t keep them in for more than eight hours), and pads can move around, meaning you aren’t properly protected. The answer? Period underwear.
By now, period underwear has hit the mainstream, with many brands offering period-proof pyjamas and nighttime panties specifically to prevent leaks at night. This blog post suggests pairing them with pads, tampons or menstrual cups to avoid any leaking disasters.
FIND YOUR ZEN WITH SOME PRE-BEDTIME YOGA
Yoga can help hugely when you’re on your period. Exercise increases your circulation, which reduces menstrual cramps and releases endorphins — boosting your mood and helping to tackle PMS symptoms. But it can be hard to rustle up the desire to go for a jog when you’re feeling sore and have a heavy flow. Instead, why not opt for some gentle yoga? Indeed, just ten minutes of yoga and stretching before bed can improve your blood flow and soothe tension immeasurably, as well as getting you relaxed and ready for bed. Check out these yoga positions that are perfect for easing period pains.
ADOPT THE FETAL SLEEPING POSITION
The right sleeping position can make all the difference when it comes to getting a better night’s sleep while on your period. The best one? The fetal position.
As well as being super comforting, going fetal takes the pressure off your abdominal muscles, reducing tension in that area, which can lessen cramps. It can even slow down your flow and prevent leaking. On the other hand, lying on your front can make period pain even worse, because you’re adding more pressure to your uterus. So, the next time you’re feeling period pain when in bed, roll onto your side, curl up and get comfy.
KEEP YOUR BEDROOM AT A GOOD TEMPERATURE
During menstruation, your body temperature rises due to changes in your hormone levels and your body becomes less tolerant to temperature changes. This means you can feel hot and bothered while you’re on your period, causing you to have hot flashes and night sweats when you’re trying to sleep. By adjusting the temperature in your room just a little bit, you can cool your body down and get a better night’s sleep. This could be a case of investing in a fan, getting some lighter bedding, or even just opening a window at night. Trust us, you’ll notice the difference.