How to Cope with Endometriosis Symptoms at Home

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Endometriosis is a disorder where the tissue that lines your uterus grows on the outside of the uterine cavity. It can cause pain, cramps, heavy bleeding, and menstrual cycle disruptions, all of which are extremely frustrating to deal with long-term. Fortunately, you may be able to relieve some of your symptoms using therapeutic techniques and drug store products. Be sure to get a proper diagnosis before treating yourself and work with your doctor to create a treatment plan that is right for you.


[Edit]Managing Pain with Medication and Supplements

  1. Take over-the-counter NSAIDs to relieve pain and cramping. The most distressing symptom of endometriosis is pain and cramping that can occur in the abdomen and pelvic area. Fortunately, you may find that your endometriosis pain can be relieved by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, and aspirin. These drugs are good for any type of period cramps or pain during urination and bowel movements.[1]
    • If your pain increases during your menstrual period, consider starting to take NSAIDs about 24 hours before your period is due.[2]
    • Talk to your doctor about the best regimen of NSAIDs for you. In general, though, you can take 400 to 600 milligrams of ibuprofen orally every 4 to 6 hours. Do not take more than 3200 mg in a 24 hour period.[3]
    • For naproxen sodium, you can usually take 275 milligrams every 6 to 8 hours, not to exceed 1375 milligrams in any single day.[4]
    • Alternatively, you can try 325-650 milligrams of aspirin orally 3 or 4 times a day, but don’t go over 4 grams. Always talk to your doctor before taking any medication.[5]
  2. Try acetaminophen if you can’t take NSAIDs. NSAIDs are not for everyone, as they may cause you to feel nauseated, to vomit, or to have diarrhea. If that’s the case, you can take acetaminophen (known as paracetamol in the UK) instead.[6]
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    • The typical dosage of acetaminophen is 650 to 1000 milligrams every 4 to 6 hours. Do not exceed 4000 milligrams in any single day. Do not take more than your doctor recommends, as acetaminophen can cause liver damage if used incorrectly. Drinking alcoholic beverages increases this risk.[7]
  3. Take turmeric supplements to help with inflammation. Turmeric, also known as curcumin, is a natural spice that is proven to reduce inflammation and swelling, which can reduce bloating, cramps, and pain. Try taking a 400 mg to 600 mg supplement 2 to 3 times per day until your symptoms lessen.[8]
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    • Do not exceed 2,000 mg of turmeric per day, or you may have indigestion.
  4. Take fish oil supplements to increase your omega-3 intake. The omega-3 content in fish oil can help to reduce inflammation and lessen the severity of cramps and pain. Try taking 250 mg to 500 mg of fish oil supplements per day to see if they help you long-term.[9]
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    • You can find fish oil supplements at most home goods stores.

[Edit]Incorporating Massages and Therapies

  1. Use a heating pad or warm bath to help relieve cramps. When you have cramps from endometriosis, heat can help take the edge off the pain. Try a heating pad on your back or front. You can also use a warm bath to help with the cramps.[10]
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    • Heat relaxes your pelvic muscles and increases blood flow to the area.
  2. Get pelvic massages to lessen your pain. Contact a licensed massage therapist and ask about pelvic massages for pain relief. You can talk to them about your symptoms and have them palpate your lower torso area to relieve tension and pain. Go back as often as your massage therapist recommends to stay on top of your pain.[11]
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    • Pelvic massages not only help immediately, but can lower the severity of your pain long-term.
  3. Use a TENS machine for electro-therapy. TENS machines attach to your body with small electrodes, usually along your pelvic area and lower back. The machine sends small electrical pulses into your body that don’t hurt, but they may feel slightly ticklish. The pulses release endorphins in your body to relieve pain or block pain messages.[12]
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    • You can find TENS machines at most drug stores for about $200.
  4. Practice meditation to get in touch with your body. Sit down in an environment that you feel comfortable in, like your home or in a natural area. Focus on emptying your mind and feeling any pain or discomfort that you are experiencing. Use this time to get in tune with your body and acknowledge the pain that you may be feeling.[13]
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    • You can do meditation as often or as little as you’d like to.
    • Look up some guided meditation techniques to practice visualisation and positivity.
  5. Try yoga or tai chi for some mindful exercise. Go to classes or look up videos online of some guided, mindful exercise practices. Not only will these get your body moving, which can help with pain and inflammation, but they will also allow you to tap into your emotions and set goals for your mind and your body.[14]
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    • Try to exercise mindfully about twice a week.

[Edit]Dealing with Heavy Bleeding

  1. Plan to take things easy while you’re on your period. Excessive bleeding during your menstrual period is a common symptom of endometriosis. It’s advisable to pursue medical treatment options with your physician, but in addition, you can aim to plan ahead for your menstrual period. Whenever possible, avoid scheduling demanding and time-consuming events and activities if you consistently have a heavy period.[15]
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    • Another symptom is breakthrough bleeding, so always having period supplies on hand is helpful.[16]
  2. Pick more absorbent versions of pads and tampons to prevent leaks. When you do use menstrual products, consider using the longer, wider versions or the top-of-the-line versions that are more absorbent. Pads with wings can also help protect you from spillage.[17]
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    • Pads and tampons that are more absorbent than others are often marketed as “super.”
  3. Consider combining menstrual products for a heavy flow. If your flow is very heavy, you may need to use a combination of products to help protect yourself. For instance, you can use a pad and a tampon together to help catch any leaks.[18]
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    • You can also use a menstrual cup in place of a tampon or washable pads in place of throwaway pads to reduce waste.
    • Always have supplies on hand just in case.
  4. Go to the bathroom often to change your menstrual products. Plan to visit the restroom once every 2 to 3 hours to check for leaks or stains when you are on your period. Take your sanitary products with you to change them out if you need to.[19]
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[Edit]When to Seek Medical Care

  1. Get a proper diagnosis before you start treating yourself. Endometriosis shares symptoms with other conditions, like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or ovarian cysts. You need to get a proper medical diagnosis so you know what to treat. Talk to your doctor if you have the following symptoms:[20]
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    • Very painful periods
    • Heavy periods
    • Spotting between periods
    • Pain while urinating or having a bowel movement
    • Pain during sex
    • Trouble getting pregnant
    • Fatigue during your periods
    • Nausea, constipation, or diarrhea during your periods
  2. Work with your doctor to create a treatment plan for you. While there’s no cure for endometriosis, managing your symptoms can help you find relief. Additionally, it’s important to monitor your condition to reduce your risk of complications. Treatments don’t affect everyone the same way, so look for options that work for you. Talk to your doctor to learn about all of your options and to keep track of your progress.[21]
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  3. Ask about an iron supplement to help prevent anemia. If you’ve been bleeding heavily for a long time, you could be at risk for anemia. Ask your doctor if you need to take an iron supplement at home to help replenish the supply of iron in your blood.[22]
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  • Stay in close contact with your physician. Endometriosis is best handled by a combination of medical treatment and coping mechanisms.
  • Although some herbal supplements are marketed as hormone-regulators, you should not rely on those over medication recommended by your doctor.
  • Try to eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly to maintain your overall health.



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