Why do my muscles get so sore before my period?

By Dr. Roshini Raj
September 07, 2015
Credit: Getty Images

Why do my muscles get sore before my period?

Although abdominal cramps tend to be the most talked-about sign of PMS, joint or muscle pain throughout your body is fairly common around that time of the month, too. Blame hormonal fluctuations, which can make your nerve endings extra sensitive and more likely to perceive regular muscle activity as pain.

If you're prone to premenstrual aches, you might want to hold off on getting a bikini wax or trying a new gym class until your period is in full swing, because you'll feel pain more strongly when you're PMS-ing. If the soreness is regular and severe, talk to your doc about long-term treatment options, like going on a birth control pill to help regulate your hormone levels. Otherwise, over-the-counter anti-inflammatories can bring relief.

In the meantime, taking good care of yourself—getting enough sleep, exercising regularly and reducing stress—can help minimize this and other annoying PMS symptoms.

Roshini Rajapaksa, MD, Health's medical editor, is assistant professor of medicine at the NYU School of Medicine and co-founder of Tula Skincare.