During your period, there is no greater feeling than popping a Midol, brewing some tea, and snuggling with a heating pad for your cramps. It can help reduce the inflammation and total chaos taking place in your lower abdomen—for many people who have periods, a hot compress is a total game changer. The severity of cramps vary by person (and if you have conditions like endometriosis, which can cause debilitating cramps, heating pads may not do the trick) but even the mildest cramps can negatively impact your daily activities. To keep that from happening, a heating pad is a must-have for Aunt Flo.
This is because of how heat therapy works. Any time you apply heat to your uterus specifically, the heat helps to increase blood circulation to that area, according to a 2018 study. As a result, your muscles can relax a bit, and you may experience some pain relief. This can also be the case when it comes to taking hot a warm bath or using a hot compress like a patch.
Ahead, we've curated the top heating pads for cramps to add to your self-care routine when your period shows up. And you don't even need to be on your period to get the benefits of a heating pad—they're great for any kind of muscle pain or tension (like an aching back).
Best heating pads for cramps
With over 50,000 five-star reviews, this Pure Enrichment heating pad is a match made in heaven for those with painful cramps and muscle tension. For starters, it heats up within seconds, and puts out a steady amount of high heat (you can choose from 6 levels, going up to 140 degrees) for up to two hours at a time before automatically shutting off. Additionally, it’s made with super plush fabric is large enough in size to reach your entire back muscles.
If you like a bit of variety in heat range, you can’t go wrong with this Comfytemp heating pad. It comes with nine different settings, which makes it easy for you to find just the right temperature to help relax your body and ease your muscles. At the same time, you also can choose how long the the pad stays on, thanks to five different preset timing options.
Originally $219, now $139
What makes this heating pad so unique is how it provides heat to the body. Infrared heating pads, like this one, use infrared light to help distribute heat deep within the layers of your skin and beyond the immediate surface of the skin. As a bonus, this heating pad also includes jade and tourmaline stones, both of which are believed to help boost your body’s energy by emitting negative ions.
If you rather not deal with a lengthy cord or being glued to an outlet all day, this Buehuo heating pad is worth adding to your self-care routine. Unlike many other heating pads, this one is powered by a battery back that allows you freedom to be at your desk, bed or car without ever having to take off the device.
In terms of versatility, the Soothing Company Store Extra Large Heating Pad checks all the right boxes. you can use it to help reduce discomfort and pain across your shoulders, neck and stomach. All you have to do is throw it in the microwave, tie it around the area you want, and you’re good to go. The pad provides immediate heat for up 20 minutes at a time to any area you choose.
Originally $40, now $19
The Homech Electric Heating Pad comes with a super functional remote that you can use to adjust one of six heat levels. It should be noted that the device heats up quickly, but to be careful not to fold it. Once you do, the pad will cease to provide any heat in that position.
It’s a weighted blanket *and* a heating pad: The best of both worlds! The benefits of weighted blankets are well-documented, with many people using them to help reduce anxiety, and to stay extra cozy. And this heating pad does exactly that—and then some. It weighs in at just over seven pounds and comes with three different heat levels that you can adjust based on your needs.
Another safe pick that shoppers can’t stop raving about is this Banne Electric Heating Pad. Similar to other devices on the list, this one is designed to help reduce the pain in cramps and body aches. It comes with a sleek controller that you can easily use to turn up the heat. It has three warmth levels and can stay on for 90 minutes at a time.
Yup, another heated weighted blanket. At Well+Good, we stan a weighted blanket, and this heating pad may just be at the top. Not only does it heat up and keep your stomach feeling insulated, but the pad also doubles as a massager. The fabric is made with soft microfiber polyester and is filled with glass beads to give it its heaviness.
And last but not least, for those who don’t like any electric tools, you are in luck with these Attu Rubber Hot Water Bottles. All you have to is fill the bottle with water which you can turn into an effective ice pack or a hot compress for your stomach. Not to mention, it comes with a small carrying case which is a knit version of the bottle (aka, it’s a little sweater, and what can be cuter?).
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