Menstruation is a blessing but it can also be a curse for some women. Getting the monthly period is an indication of being a woman; however, along with it come issues like cramps, discomfort, pre-menstrual stress, depleting iron levels and so on. Additionally, women who need to travel frequently due to their jobs, sportswomen/athletes as well as girls with physical or mental disabilities often need to consider ways to stop periods.
In this guide, we will discuss some of the important ways of putting a stop to the period. A word of caution: none of the remedies discussed here must be taken as medical advice. It is important that you consider the physical and psychological implications of stopping periods completely. You must also discuss the methods as well as the reasons behind your decision with a gynecologist/physician prior to using these remedies.
How to Stop Your Period – the best methods
1. Surgical Methods to stop your period-Hysterectomy and Endometrial Ablation
One of the most common ways of putting a stop to the monthly period is through surgery. In these, a common method is hysterectomy which involves the removal of the uterus. (Certain types of hysterectomy procedures allow the patient to keep the ovaries). Hysterectomy is normally recommended to women with very heavy periods and who have already had children. Issues and complications like uterine cancer etc also may also call for hysterectomy. The procedure has a significant downtime and many precautions need to be taken following the surgery. Hysterectomy could also give rise to side effects like hot flashes, premature aging and so on. Hormonal replacement therapy is often required to replace estrogen and other missing hormones following the surgery.
Endometrial ablation is another invasive procedure to help stop periods. This can be done in-office in a short time and has very little downtime. Most women are able to return to work following the procedure. Ablation requires insertion of a wand and triangular mesh device into the uterus through the cervix (the entrance to the womb) under local anesthesia. Precisely measure radio frequencies are then delivered to the uterus for a couple of minutes to ablate the uterus. This helps reduce and, in some cases, even completely stop the period. Endometrial ablation is a very safe, non-hormonal method of stopping periods in women
2. How to stop your period by Non-Surgical methods: Pills, Patches and Injections
Women who wish to stop their periods but do not wish to go in for invasive methods can opt for birth control pills or contraceptive patches. These are hormonal in nature and one might still get the period for about 3 or 4 times a year. Estrogen based oral contraceptives can be used cyclically and can even be combined with NSAIDs (Non steroidal anti inflammatory pills) to considerably reduce menstrual bleeding and pain associated with the cycle. Many OCPs are available in chewable form- convenient for patients having mental, physical or swallowing disabilities.
Patches that help stop periods also work like OCPs or oral contraceptive pills, in that; they basically control the hormones in the body via the skin. The patches must be worn for a few weeks at a time, then removed for one week to get back the period. This is optional, as patients can continue wearing the patch all along to stop period completely. This method of stopping periods is particularly used by women who wish to get pregnant when the time is right and who desire to have more freedom and greater control over their period.
DMPA Injections (depot medroxyprogesterone acetate injections) to stop periods not only help suppress menstruation, they are also great for contraception. Deep intramuscular dose of these progesterone injections given every 12 weeks can give freedom from periods for this time. The advantage of using injections in stopping menstruation is that one need not remember taking the OCP daily; additionally, it can help with problems associated with the monthly cycle including heavy bleeding, cramps, pre-menstrual stress etc.
3. How to stop your period by herbal and natural Means
Lady’s Mantle: Also called Alchemilla Vulgaris, the leaves of this herb can be extracted to produce essential oils and compounds that contract uterine muscles and stop heavy bleeding. Lady’s Mantle extracts also help clot blood and provide an astringent effect to tighten blood vessels. Taken regularly for a period of several months has been proven to reduce or stop menstrual flow completely in women. The recommended dose of this herb is 20 to 30 drops of extract taken at least thrice a day for 3 weeks prior to expected date of period.
Shepherd’s Purse- Also called Capsella Bursa Pastoris, the leaves of the herb have been used for centuries in traditional folk medicine to stop heavy menstrual and post-partum bleeding. Simply boil the leaves of Shepherd’s Purse in water until the quantity reduces to half of the original. If purchased commercially, take 1 to 2 teaspoons of the extract in a glass of water or in an 8 ounce tea to stop periods. The herb helps contract uterine muscles to reduce bleeding. Taken regularly, it can help prevent menstruation completely.
Comfrey- Comfrey tea has been used since centuries to reduce hemorrhagic bleeding and many traditional herbalists also recommend it to women looking to stop periods. Dried or fresh comfrey leaves can be boiled in a quart of water and steeped for a few minutes to make into a tea. This can be taken regularly with a little honey to reduce or stop periods completely.
Other herbs that can regulate and stop periods completely include cinnamon, mustard seeds, banana flowers, chaste tree, raspberry tea etc.
Other natural methods like exercising very strenuously can also help put a stop to the monthly period. However, this must be done only under the advice of a doctor and physical trainer.
How to stop your period – A conclusion
There is no perfect strategy to help women stop their periods. The choice depends entirely on one’s circumstances and overall health. Hysterectomy is generally considered as a last resort and it must be seen if other medical means can be used prior to using surgical alternatives to permanently stop periods.