Living with Endometriosis
Once you know you have endometriosis,
you can think about your options for treatment. Even after treatment, most women have
symptoms off and on until menopause. Then, when monthly periods are over for good, symptoms
tend to decrease or disappear. In the meantime, there is a lot you can do to help yourself
Help with emotions
Along with cycles of pain, you may
have emotional cycles or mood swings. You may feel frustrated or depressed. Don’t suffer
in silence. Talking to someone you trust can really help. Also spend time doing things
Heat can help limit pain. Soak in a
hot bath or use a heating pad. You may also find relief with yoga, meditation, or
acupuncture. Acetaminophen and ibuprofen may also help. Those work best if taken just as
pain begins. If needed, you may be given prescription medicine to reduce cramping and
pain during periods. Keep track of your symptoms to help you anticipate and cope with
For some women, making certain
changes in their diet seems to reduce symptoms. These changes include:
Eating less refined sugar and
Eating more dairy and get
enough vitamin D.
Choosing whole-grain breads
Eating at least 5 fruits and
vegetables each day.
Talking with your healthcare
provider about taking nutritional supplements.
Following treatment, many women
with endometriosis are able to become pregnant. Some of these women find that being
pregnant relieves symptoms—at least for a while.
Frequent exercise can help control
your symptoms. Try to exercise about 2 hours and 30 minutes a week. Doing so can help
relieve pain, including cramps.
activities may offer the most symptom relief. Try walking, swimming, or biking.
Talking about sex
Many women with endometriosis have
pain during sex. To increase comfort, you may want to try new positions. Some times of
the month may be better than others. Also talk with your partner about other ways you
can be intimate. Massage might be a good option for both of you.