Our grandmothers have passed on many wise tips for moving through life, from beauty secrets to home remedies for everyday ailments. Among the top? Always have a hot-water bottle at the ready to help you with everything from relieving period cramps to warming your feet before bed on a chilly night.
To menstruate is to know that period symptoms are always in flux and that even the change of season can dramatically impact them. Come winter, we tend to exercise less and eat richer, heartier foods, which can exacerbate PMS symptoms, especially cramps. One of the most tried-and-true remedies to ease aches and pains is applying heat to the lower abdomen with a hot-water bottle. “It helps soothe the tense muscles associated with cramping,” explains Sherry Ross, M.D., a Santa Monica ob-gyn. “Heat works by relaxing the muscles of the uterus, which increases blood flow and ultimately helps ease the pain.”
And it’s not just helpful for abdominal cramps but for other parts of the body under stress too. “Many women also get neck pain during their period due to the general muscle cramping and drop in magnesium and progesterone before their cycle, so a hot-water bottle is a great home remedy for this,” explains integrative-medicine physician Taz Bhatia, M.D. “There is also the psychological impact of warmth giving us a feeling of relief,” adds Dr. Bhatia, citing findings that show that exposure to warm temperature can elevate a person’s mood. (Hence the enduring appeal of using a hot-water bottle to keep your feet toasty on a nippy night by placing it at the foot of the bed.)
To up the cozy factor of your hot-water-bottle session, there are a variety of covers to accessorize—and snuggle up with—during the colder months. There are sumptuous classics made from cable knits or faux fur, as well as even more elevated designs, like the silk chinoiserie-print offerings from The Beauty Sleeper. Shop the most practical and stylish options below.
GeweYeeli Hot Water Bottle