5 Cares for Endometriosis You Haven’t Tried
As an endo warrior and nurse practitioner, I have tried many things to assist with my symptom management. Below are my top 5 cares that I have found extremely beneficial for myself and my patients.
1. Pelvic Floor PT
This therapy is one of my absolute favorites and something I want to shout from a mountain. This is a manual therapy that can help resolve or alleviate abdominal and visceral symptoms associated with endometriosis. Endometriosis makes it difficult for the pelvic floor muscles to relax or move due to scarring. If you have a severe case, your pelvic floor will experience spasms that cause severe pain and make intercourse impossible. Endometriosis affects other abdominal organs causing scarring, which in turn impairs their mobility. Your therapist will help train you to relax your body and help with alignment. They may also implement manual techniques that directly cause muscle relaxation and relieve pain.
I have pre-scheduled monthly acupuncture sessions through the next six months. Why? Because I missed three months and my endometriosis was flared to a level I don’t want to experience again. I only go once monthly due to the distance I have to drive but I would encourage more often appointments and finding an acupuncturist who is family and trained in reproductive care. This technique works by promoting blood circulation and regulating hormones. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect and pain relief property due to its impact on endorphin levels. In “chi” terms there is “blood stagnation”, and your cause will be determined by your acupuncture practitioner. Most of these practitioners are trained in herbs which are an additional treatment to add. How does this all work? After the needle is inserted, a neurotransmitter called adenosine is released. Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that works to decrease the heart rate and works as an anti-inflammatory. Endogenous opioids are also released, which are our bodies natural painkillers.
*Always consult your healthcare provider before starting a new supplement.
DIM is naturally found in vegetables such as cabbage, broccoli, kale, and cauliflower. It is thought to work as an anti-inflammatory and break down estrogen excess to remove from the body.
Vitamin B6 is found in non-citrus fruits, starchy vegetables such as potatoes, fish, and poultry. It is thought that vitamin B6 assists with hormone regulation and reduces the level of estrogen in the body. If you recall, endometriosis is known to cause estrogen excess, which plays a role in unwanted symptoms.
Resveratrol can be found in grapes, peanuts, and mulberries. This too is thought to help with estrogen activity and pain relief.
4. Dietary changes
Eating a fertility-friendly diet will decrease inflammation and this is key to controlling endometriosis symptoms. This can be done by eliminating spicy, deep-fried, dairy, caffeine, alcohol. Make sure to incorporate dark leafy greens, chicken, pork, mint or jasmine tea, beets, seaweed, zucchini, asparagus, berries, apples.
5. TENS therapy Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
This was new to me and the only one I hadn’t tried until recently, and I am happy to report it works! Make sure you check with your healthcare provider before adding. This works by using mild electric currents to treat pain. When the current hits your nerves, it stops them from sending pain signals to your brain. It works great for all types of muscle pain.
This disease is near and dear to me, I am here to be a source of support and guidance if you find yourself lost while going through this diagnosis.
Watch the replay of my free educational webinar on Endometriosis 101. It will be available for 30 days!