My HormonologyBefore you head to the dentist, think about how intense your menstrual cramps typically are every month. Are they mild? Moderate? Severe?

Your answer about how much menstrual pain you experience may predict how much pain you’ll feel from your dental procedure and how long the discomfort will last.

That’s the word from a 2014 study out of China that found women with mild cramps experience significantly less dental pain and get over the discomfort far faster than women with moderate or severe cramps.

The researchers theorize that women with more painful cramps probably produce more pain-signaling prostaglandins, making them more sensitive to pain triggers.

So, what does this mean for you? Knowing ahead of time what your level of sensitivity is can help you prevent unnecessary pain.

For instance, if you have moderate to severe cramps, let your dentist know that you may have more pain sensitivity. That way, she can take extra precautions to reduce discomfort, perhaps, by using a stronger anesthetic or spacing out dental work over time rather than doing a big, complex procedure all at once.

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