Acupuncture for Menstrual Pain

Many women have become accustomed to monthly pains with their period. Wouldn’t they be surprised to hear they don’t have to live with it? The providers at Integrative Acupuncture in Montpelier and Williston have been effectively treating menstrual irregularities for over 15 years. As specialists in using acupuncture for fertility, we have extensive experience helping women’s menstrual cycles regulate and eliminating pains. PMS? No problem. Whether it be the weepy or irritable variety, acupuncture soothes the flow in the body to reduce PMS.

What Causes Menstrual Pain?

Dysmenorrhea is the medical term for period cramps. Cramping with the menstrual cycle often occurs after 1-2 years of menstruating. Pain is experienced in the low abdomen and/or back and may also be felt in the legs. Spasms and cramping are the most commonly experienced symptoms of menstrual pain. These pains may be eliminated after a woman gives birth.

Secondary dysmenorrhea involves irregularities in the reproductive organs. This may be endometriosis, fibroids or PID (pelvic inflammatory disease). The pain in these cases is severe and often experienced before the menses begins.

How Does Western Medicine Treat Menstrual Pain?

Modern medicine’s solution to menstrual pains is often birth control pills, pain medications, or surgery. It is also often recommended to massage the area of pain and to use heat.

How Does Acupuncture Treat Menstrual Pain?

Acupuncture works naturally to reduce period pain without risky medications and side effects. We often combine Chinese herbal medicine, customized for each woman, to reduce period pain. We also use moxibustion and heat therapies. We effectively use acupuncture to reduce pain from both primary and secondary dysmenorrhea. Chinese medicine has defined period pain for thousands of years as being a blockage in the flow of blood and energy in the body.

Studies show a significant reduction in pain, menstrual cramps, headache, dizziness, diarrhea, faint, mood changes, tiredness, nausea, and vomiting with acupuncture.

Acupuncturists evaluate the health of the organs like the Liver, Kidneys, and Spleen and the health of blood to create a custom treating plan to reduce menstrual pain. It is thought in traditional Chinese medicine, a woman must have a comfortably flowing menstrual cycle to achieve pregnancy. We often work with woman trying to conceive to smooth their menstrual cycle and to achieve pregnancy.

Few randomised, blinded clinical trials have addressed the efficacy of acupuncture in treating endometriosis-related pain. Nonetheless, the current literature suggests that acupuncture reduces pain and serum CA-125 levels, regardless of the control intervention used. Clinically we have helped many women reduce pain from endometriosis and assisted them with fertility.

The providers at IAOM have experience and expertise to treat your menstrual pain. We work with women from throughout Vermont and beyond with acupuncture, Chinese herbs, and moxibustion to achieve health.

We are experts at combining acupuncture with your current treatment plan and are happy to collaborate with any providers you are working with. We want you to feel better as quickly as possible!


Woo HL, Ji HR, Pak YK, et al. The efficacy and safety of acupuncture in women with primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine (Baltimore). 2018;97(23):e11007. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000011007

Shetty GB, Shetty B, Mooventhan A. Efficacy of Acupuncture in the Management of Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Randomized Controlled Trial. J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2018;11(4):153–158. doi:10.1016/j.jams.2018.04.001

Xu Y, Zhao W, Li T, Zhao Y, Bu H, Song S. Effects of acupuncture for the treatment of endometriosis-related pain: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2017;12(10):e0186616. Published 2017 Oct 27. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0186616


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