What is Endometriosis?
What is Endometriosis?
Did you know that endometriosis is a disease that touch one in every ten women? Worldwide it’s more than 176 millions of women that are affected by this painful and incurable disease.
According to Endometriosis Network Canada :
“ The endometrium is the lining of the uterus that sheds each month during the menstrual cycle. Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to the lining of the uterus implants abnormally outside of the uterus in the pelvic cavity to form lesions, cysts, nodules and other growths. These growths have been found on every pelvic organ and surface including ligaments, bladder, ovaries, tubes, uterus, ureters, bowel, and other peritoneal (intra-abdominal) surfaces. More rarely, endometriosis has been found on the lung, diaphragm, nasal cavity and other locations throughout the body. Hormones that trigger the endometrium to bleed each month also stimulate the inappropriately placed tissues.
This can cause pain, internal scarring, formation of adhesions (bands of scar tissue that can connect organs inappropriately), infertility and other medical complications. For each patient with endometriosis, the specific locations of the endometriosis lesions are different, giving rise to a disease that can present uniquely in different patients. Endometriosis is much more than just a disease of the reproductive system—it can affect many systems in the body.”
In short, this means that the body creates endometrium where it shouldn’t and when these tissues want to leave your body, during your period, it has nowhere to go, creating inflammation (read pain) across the body. This unwanted (and unnecessary) tissue can even block your reproductive system, creating fertility issues.
Symptoms to look out for:
- Disabling or increasingly painful menstrual cycles
- Pelvic pain at any time of the cycle / chronic pelvic pain
- Pain during intercourse
- Back or leg pain during menstruation
Period symptoms 🩸
- Period can last more than 7 days
- Bleeding / pain between periods
Gastrointestinal symptoms 💩
- Constipation, diarrhea, or cycling between the two
- Abdominal bloating
- Nausea and vomiting
- Painful bowel movement
Bladder symptoms 🚽
- Bladder pain
- Urinary urgency
- Urinary frequency
- Pain with urination
Fertility issues 🤰
- Recurrent pregnancy loss
Diagnostic and treatment:Getting a diagnostic of endometriosis can be a challenge, as most women wait between 8 and 10 years before receiving a diagnostic for endometriosis.
Doctors and health provider specialized in endometriosis are uncommon, and most people will think that “period pain” is common and not such a big deal. Making the journey to a diagnosis can be long and frustrating for most women.But there is hope! For our readers in Canada you can find a great list of endometriosis specialists here.
For now, because this disease is unknown and unpopular in the scientific community there isn’t a lot of treatment available, mainly birth control or surgery.
Some “Endo” fighters are trying to reduce their symptoms by using more natural methods like :
- Adjusting their diet
- Eating more fibers
- Increasing their intake of Omega-3s
- Avoiding trans fat
- Eating less red meat
- Limiting caffeine and alcohol
- Eating less processed food
- Following a treatment with a pelvic / perineal physiotherapist
- Reducing thir stress levels (yoga, meditation, active lifestyle)
- Trying Acupuncture / Traditional Chinese medicine
- Trying Naturopathic medicine
Our top 5 Instagram accounts to follow if you want to join the “Endo” Community:
When you are stuck with a crazy amount of pain and have been for years without a diagnostic, it’s easy to feel lonely and discouraged. But remember, this affects at least one of us in every ten women! So if you want to learn more about Endometriosis, how to live with it, how other women feel about living with endometriosis and pick up some of their tricks, all you have to do is follow them on Instagram / Facebook / blogs.
Here are some of our favorite Instagram accounts.
Is a small instagram accounts but their infographics are right on point and really helpful if you want to learn more about this topic. Perfect for Endometriosis Awareness Month!
On her account Alice, an Endo Fighter, shares everything with us; her experience, her tips and even some research and history surrounding endometriosis.
On this account you'll find great info, diagrams and quotes about endometriosis, cysts and fibroids.
This is the Instagram account of the Podcast “This Endolife” where Jessica presents you with great information and interviews on everything about living with Endometriosis. She even gives a free guide to manage endometriosis naturally on her website.
Is an organism that is fighting for awareness, education and research founding for endometriosis. They present you quick video featuring Endo fighters from various backgrounds. They really created a great community on their account.