How to Make a Homemade Heating Pad for Menstrual Pain

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Menstrual cramps, also known as dysmenorrhea or period pains, are painful sensations felt in the lower abdomen that can occur both before and during a menstrual period. Some people only experience the slightest of cramps during their period while, for others, the pain can be severe. Sometimes, this pain also radiates outward to the pelvis and the lower back.

Anti-inflammatory medication can help but, if you'd prefer to avoid medication, a heating pad could also ease your pain.

And you don't even have to shell out big bucks to get one.

DIY Heating Pad for Cramps

Here's how you can make a heating pad using things you probably already have at home.


  • Tube sock
  • Rice (do not use instant rice)
  • Microwave oven


  1. Fill the foot of a tube sock with rice. 
  2. Tie the open end of the tube sock into a knot.
  3. Place the rice-filled sock into your microwave oven for 2 to 3 minutes on high power. Time may vary by microwave, so check after one and a half minutes.
  4. Remove the sock from the microwave and place it onto the area of your body where you're feeling pain.

Tip: The sock may be very hot. Protect your skin from burning by using a towel or other material between your skin and the sock.

A Word From Verywell

If the homemade heating pad isn't doing it for you, there are other ways to ease the pain. Exercise, oral contraception, certain vitamins, herbal remedies, and a warm bath are all methods that have proven helpful for other women.

While it’s perfectly normal to experience mild cramps during menstruation, you may want to consult with your doctor if cramping becomes especially painful. You should also call your doctor if your cramps are accompanied by a fever, if there is an increased or foul-smelling vaginal discharge, if you experience severe pain, or if your period is more than one week late and you have been sexually active.

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Article Sources
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  1. American Academy of Family Physicians. Dysmenorrhea. Updated January 30, 2019.

  2. Jo J, Lee SH. Heat therapy for primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis of its effects on pain relief and quality of life. Sci Rep. 2018;8(1):16252. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-34303-z

  3. Mirabi P, Alamolhoda SH, Esmaeilzadeh S, Mojab F. Effect of medicinal herbs on primary dysmenorrhoea- a systematic review. Iran J Pharm Res. 2014;13(3):757-67.