It’s not uncommon for women to experience pain whenever they have their menstrual periods. Most women have cramps on the first couple of days, and some have cramps a few days before it even begins. This is completely normal and shouldn’t be much cause for concern. However, in rare cases, pelvic pain might indicate that there is an underlying problem that needs to be addressed. This is usually the case if there is excessive bleeding and severe pain.
Could I Be Pregnant If I Have Pelvic Pain Before Period?
Early pregnancy can bring about some pain in the abdominal area. The duration of your cramps will range anywhere from a few seconds to a few hours and may occur sporadically within the span of a few days. This happens as the embryo attaches to the lining of the uterus, any time from the third to the thirteenth day after ovulation occurs. The amount of pain varies for every woman and can range anywhere from mildly to significantly painful. Generally, however, the discomfort is still bearable.
In certain cases, the pain can feel sharper on one side of the abdomen or at the end of the day. It can also get worse after you have been standing or exerting physical effort for quite a bit. Even coughing, laughing, or sneezing can exert some pressure on the muscles in your abdomen, making your cramps more noticeable. If your pelvic pain occurs alongside symptoms such as nausea and dizziness, fatigue, tender breasts, and a missed cycle, you might want to consider seeing a doctor to confirm if you are indeed pregnant.
Other Possible Causes of Pelvic Pain Before Period
Pelvic pain is a common symptom of endometriosis, a disorder that occurs when tissue from the lining of the uterus begins to grow outside of it. When women with this condition experience their monthly cycle, the extra tissue cannot be shed by the body, leading to the formation of cysts and fibrous tissues. These foreign bodies could be the cause of unusually painful cramps.
2. Chronic Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
This is a condition in which the female reproductive organs become infected as a result of sexually transmitted infections or diseases that have been left untreated for a while. Symptoms of this condition include pain in the lower abdomen and during intercourse, irregular cycles, and foul-smelling discharge.
3. Ectopic Pregnancy
This is a pregnancy that occurs outside the woman’s womb, usually in the fallopian tubes and in some especially rare cases, in the cervix. There is no known example where a fetus survives this kind of pregnancy. Endometriosis can increase the risk for this kind of pregnancy, and up to 50% of women who have experienced this have also had PID.
4. Uterine Fibroids
These non-cancerous tissue growths create pressure in the lower abdomen, but don’t usually cause any pain until they begin dying. The most common symptoms of this condition are pelvic crams, lower abdomen pressure, pain during intercourse, and heavy bleeding during and between periods.
5. Interstitial Cystitis
Also called painful bladder syndrome, this occurs when the bladder is inflamed, creating pelvic pain before period. Symptoms include frequent urination, sharp pains in the bladder, pressure around the pelvic area, and painful intercourse.
6. Ovarian Remnant Syndrome
This condition occurs when there is tissue from the ovaries that is left behind after a hysterectomy. Because the ovaries are not completely removed, this causes chronic pain and discomfort in the pelvic area. Other side effects include pain that is experienced during sexual intercourse, or even just during urination or passing stool.
7. Pelvic Joint Instability
This is a condition that happens after natural childbirth. When the woman delivers the baby, the ligaments around the joints on her pelvis need to be stretched in order to accommodate the size of the baby. As a result, the ligaments can weaken and be unable to fully support the weight of the pelvis, causing the woman to experience mild to severe discomfort.
8. Cervical or Uterine Cancers
Pelvic pain can be considered as a symptom of advanced stages of cervical cancer which occurs when there is an uncontrollable growth of cells in the cervix. Pain in the pelvis is also a symptom of uterine cancer, along with difficulty urinating, unusual bleeding from the vagina, and painful intercourse.
9. Menstrual Cramps
Finally, the least worrying cause of pelvic pain is menstrual cramps which can range from dull aches to sharp pains around the lower abdomen. This is completely normal and is experienced by many women a few days before and during their actual periods.
Experiences About Pelvic Pain Before Period
“I experience sharp, stabbing pains on both sides of my pelvis every time my period is about to come. I’ve already undergone several medical exams to see if there is anything wrong, but the only thing that has been found is a normal cyst. Even doctors have thought that I might be suffering from UTI, kidney stones, or appendicitis, but I have nothing of the sort. I do have IBS, but I don’t think it can cause very severe pains. I have noticed that the pain worsened significantly during my pregnancies.”
“I experience sharp pains in my ovaries a few days before my cycle is due, but this pain continues sporadically even when I don’t have my period. It usually starts out on one side, then switches over to the other. If the cramps occur right before my period, I also experience terrible stabbing pains in my cervix. I consulted my doctor about this, but she said everything was normal. My most effective weapon against this pain is just to take Aspirin, but this doesn’t always work.”
“I’m currently in Depo Provera, and I have noticed that my pelvic pain before period takes place 2 to 3 weeks before I have to get another shot. I consulted my doctor about this, and apparently the pain occurs because the sudden drop in my hormones causes cysts to form, then burst. Hopefully the pain stops with continued weight loss.”