From infertility issues to pregnancy disorders and cancers of the breast, cervix, or ovaries, the overwhelming number of medical conditions women face are easy to see. Of course, annual visits to your doctor can help diagnose and treat different medical conditions. If you are experiencing severe pain during your period or dealing with infertility issues, you may be suffering with endometriosis. Considering an estimated 2 to 10% women of childbearing age suffer with endometriosis, understanding the symptoms and treatment for this condition is smart. Using this guide, you will have a better understanding of this condition and learn different treatment options.
The 101 on Endometriosis
The tissue lining your uterus, or endometrium, may grow outside of the uterus, resulting in endometriosis. This not only affects your uterus, but also your bowel area and ovaries. While the misplaced tissue continues its job to thicken, break down, and bleed during your menstrual cycle, it becomes trapped, and struggles to leave your body. This results in pain, but you will most likely experience the following symptoms, as well:
- Excessive Bleeding – Bleeding will not only be heavier, but you will also experience longer periods.
- Fatigue – The excessive bleeding decreases your body's iron, resulting in severe fatigue.
- Infertility – Due to these abnormalities in the menstrual cycle, endometriosis can cause infertility. An estimated 40 percent of patients with endometriosis struggle with infertility.
- Bloating – Prolonged periods may increase your bloating.
- Painful Intercourse – Endometriosis can also cause pain during and after sex due to the cramps and overall discomfort.
- Painful Urination/Bowel Movements – The longer periods and cramping can create pain when using the bathroom.
In many cases, your doctor will suggest prescription medications for the pain and surgical procedures to alleviate your endometriosis. Unfortunately, prescription medications may mask your pain, but they may also cause a few unhealthy side effects. In addition, an invasive full or partial hysterectomy will decrease your chances of a traditional pregnancy.
To treat your endometriosis in a non-invasive, natural manner, consider the following unique options:
- Chiropractic Care – After receiving approval from your doctor, consult a chiropractor for your endometriosis. Chiropractors believe there is a direct correlation between spinal and reproductive health, so a spinal adjustment may be an effective treatment for your endometriosis and infertility.
During a spinal adjustment, your chiropractor manually realigns the head, neck, and spine, which can improve the flow and production of reproductive hormones. Considering the cost of infertility drugs averages $6000 per cycle and $10,000 for assisted reproduction, chiropractic care is a more affordable option. In addition to increasing your fertility odds, chiropractic manipulations also increase the production of your body's natural endorphins, resulting in less endometriosis pain.
- Acupuncture – While acupuncture is an ancient Chinese practice, it is becoming a popular treatment for a variety of physical and emotional ailments. During a session, a licensed acupuncturist will insert various needles into multiple "acupoints" on your body in hopes of realigning your body's Chi. Since endometriosis alters your body's Chi, bringing it back to a healthy, aligned state with acupuncture is key to relieving pain and reducing infertility issues.
- Diet – Following a healthy diet offers many benefits, but it can also reduce the symptoms of your endometriosis. Eat organic foods, which are free from growth hormones. Concentrate your diet on whole foods, nutrient rich vegetables, and a limited amount of carbohydrates. This healthy diet improves your metabolism, balancing out your body's hormones. Take daily supplements of calcium and magnesium, as well. To reduce pain, add an Omega-3 fatty acid supplement, such as an anti-inflammatory fish oil, to your daily regimen.
The pain, discomfort, and infertility issues that result from endometriosis can be overwhelming. While medications and surgeries are available for treatment, using an holistic approach may be a healthier option for you. Using this guide, you will understand the condition and find the best holistic treatment for your endometriosis.