Understanding and Managing Endometriosis

Endometriosis- Maybe you have heard of it, maybe you know someone who has it, or maybe you’ve even been diagnosed with it yourself. Endometriosis occurs in about 1 in 10 women of reproductive age and even though it’s a significant contributor to infertility, you may not know much about it or how to cope with it.

As is the mission of Babies After 35 to be a source of reliable information on topics related to fertility and pregnancy for women after age 35, today we are going to explore more about endometriosis.

First, let’s define what endometriosis is- it is a medical condition in which the lining of the uterus or endometrial lining actually grows in abnormal areas of the abdomen and pelvis where it shouldn’t be.

It is most often diagnosed in women in their 30s and 40s, and may affect more than 11% of American women between ages 15 and 44. It is especially common among women in their 30s and 40s and may make it harder to get pregnant. These are a few of the ways that it might negatively affect fertility:

  • Blocking your fallopian tubes when growths cover or grow into your ovaries. Trapped blood in the ovaries can form cysts.

  • Causing inflammation (swelling)

  • Forming scar tissue and adhesions (type of tissue that can bind your organs together). This scar tissue may cause pelvic pain and make it hard for you to get pregnant

COPING WITH THE DISCOMFORT

Endometriosis might not just affect one’s fertility, though. It can also affect overall quality of life as it can be physically uncomfortable and quite painful. Although you can’t prevent it, there are steps you can take to make yourself more comfortable.

These products are great to help ease the physical discomfort often associated with endometriosis

REDUCING THE LIKELIHOOD OF DEVELOPING ENDOMETRIOSIS

Again, though you can’t prevent endometriosis, you can reduce your chances of developing symptomatic endometriosis by lowering the levels of the hormone estrogen in your body.

  • Talk to your doctor about hormonal birth control methods, such as pills, patches or rings with lower doses of estrogen.

  • Exercise regularly (more than 4 hours a week).2 This will also help you keep a low percentage of body fat. Regular exercise and a lower amount of body fat help decrease the amount of estrogen circulating through the body.

  • Avoid large amounts of alcohol. Alcohol raises estrogen levels.3 No more than one drink per day is recommended for women who choose to drink alcohol.

  • Avoid large amount of drinks with caffeine. Studies show that drinking more than one caffeinated drink a day, especially sodas and green tea, can raise estrogen levels.4

It is important to also support your overall health with a multivitamin. No matter how healthy one tries to eat, there are still always gaps in nutritional needs.

Here are some that the Babies After 35 community recommends:

LEARN MORE ABOUT ENDOMETRIOSIS

In this video, I discuss “Endometriosis Facts and Fertility” with ObGyn, Dr. Megan Pallister. Click here to watch it now:

You can also continue to stay up-to-date on endometriosis and find additional support through Speakendo.com.

Now I’d like to hear from you! Have you been affected by endometriosis? Head to the Facebook group and let us know in the comments some of the ways you’ve overcome it.