Being a female is all fun and games until it gets to that time of the month. Suddenly hit with the dreaded period cramps, there’s nothing to do but pop the maximum dosage of Ibuprofen and sprawl across the sofa with a hot water bottle, feeling sorry for yourself.
Where possible, I try not to take medication, but I find that period cramps are absolutely unbearable without. That was until I discovered Livia, who claim to be ‘The Off Switch for Menstrual Pain’. A med-free cure for period pain seemed almost too good to be true, so I held back my excitement until I got my hands on one.
My Livia arrived just a few days before my period, so I charged it up ready for Day 1 of testing (I think this may have been the first time I’d ever looked forward to a period). My first day cramps are usually so bad that even after taking Ibuprofen, I struggle to move, so Livia really had its work cut out.
When my period finally arrived, I resisted reaching for my painkillers and stuck to gel pads in the region of my ovaries (just below my belly button and inside my hip bones). I clipped the conveniently sized device to my waistband and turned it on. It took a couple of hits of the ‘plus’ button until I started to feel a slight tingle in my stomach. I continued to turn it up until I reached my ‘buzz threshold’.
Amazingly, within a few minutes of wearing the Livia, I almost forgot that I had just been in a lot of pain. After a few hours, my cramps started to rev up the intensity and I started to feel a hint of pain, so I retaliated by upping the Livia intensity and sure enough, the pain nearly completely disappeared again!
A few days later, I had officially finished my first pain-free period and I can assure you that I could get used to it. Minus a couple of ibuprofens that were popped whilst I waited a couple of hours for the Livia to recharge, I had also nearly gone med-free… something I never thought I’d be able to do!
How does it work?
The Livia device is based around the idea of a TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) machine. This means that the electrical stimulation that passes through the gel pads stimulates the surrounding nerves, which keeps them busy so that pain can’t be perceived by the brain.
Livia differs from a standard TENS machine in that the frequency of the electrical stimulation is specifically designed for menstrual pain. Not only that, but TENS machines also tend to be bulky and very medical looking. Livia felt very discrete to wear, being small and easily hidden under clothing. Even when I wore outfits that didn’t cover the Livia, I still loved the way it looked and didn’t feel embarrassed wearing it out and about because of its feminine design.
Does it hurt?
I was a bit apprehensive about putting the Livia on as I wasn’t sure what it was going to feel like, but I was pleasantly surprised when it felt a bit like a fuzzy massage. The stimulation was in no way painful, just an unusual sensation that you soon get used to. You can also choose the intensity depending on your own preference.
Is it worth it?
Retailed at £149 (on sale at the moment for £119), I would personally say the Livia is worth the investment in the long run. I found that the pain relief I felt from using the device was much better than any relief I’d ever had from medication, so it will definitely become an essential part of my period.
The only way I feel the Livia could be improved is if it was possible to swap the battery so that you can continue using it when the battery needs charging. Having said that, the battery lasts around 10 hours and fully charges in 2 hours, so I would just keep a hot water bottle or ibuprofen on standby while you wait for it to charge.
Get your Livia at https://mylivia.com/product/livia-kit/ and let us know how you get on with it!
Disclaimer: The Livia was kindly gifted to us to try out, however, we are under no contractual obligation to give a positive review. This is all my honest experience and opinion.