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Unbearable period pain? It could be endometriosis
Do your menstrual cramps cause so much pain that it disrupts your daily activities? Extreme cramping is not normal. Having intense pain during your period is common. But when cramps become so excruciating that they disrupt your daily life, it may signal a condition called endometriosis.
For most women, the very first period brings agonising cramps from the start. This early onset of debilitating menstrual pain can be a red flag for endometriosis. However, diagnosis usually takes years due to menstrual pain being downplayed as “normal.”
Endometriosis is estimated to affect at least 1 in 10 women of reproductive age. It occurs when tissue similar to the endometrium (uterus lining) grows outside of the uterus. These tissue growths respond to hormones just like the uterine lining does. So during your period, they break down and bleed. But because this blood has no way to exit the body, it causes inflammation and the formation of scar tissue.
This wayward endometrial-like tissue can be found on the ovaries, fallopian tubes, intestines, and other pelvic structures. The buildup of blood and inflammation each month leads to intensely painful cramping along with other symptoms like:
Yet despite these debilitating symptoms, endometriosis often goes undiagnosed for years. This is because pelvic pain with periods was long considered normal. But painful periods are NOT normal. If cramps routinely prevent you from work, school, or other activities, it warrants investigation.
Medically, endometriosis can be managed with pain medication, hormones, and surgery. While surgery can remove endometrial lesions and hormone treatments may temporarily suppress symptoms, endometriosis tends to recur. This is where functional medicine shines – by identifying and treating the underlying imbalances perpetuating endometriosis.
Potential functional medicine approaches include:
Functional medicine aims to relieve symptoms by addressing root causes, not just covering them up. This gives women natural tools to manage endometriosis long-term and take back control of their health
Hope for Endometriosis: P.G’s Journey to Healing
As a functional medicine practitioner specialising in hormonal health, I’ve helped many women successfully manage the suffering of endometriosis. The crushing pelvic pain, digestive distress, and fatigue take over their lives. But true healing is possible, as recounted by my client P.G.:
I have had a drastic improvement since following my plan to manage my endometriosis. My pain and nausea have massively reduced.
I had been suffering from very bad period pains for a long time, ever since my periods started, when I came to see Sandra.
I was diagnosed with endometriosis while having surgery at age 25. I had been to see many doctors and was prescribed lots of different drugs and treatments, including painkillers, pills, hormone treatments and surgery. But nothing seemed to improve it and I was in crippling pain every month. I was also suffering bad nausea every month.
With Sandra’s plan I followed a diet and started taking several supplements. She advised specific foods to eat a lot of (and ones to avoid).
I have had a drastic improvement since following the plan. My pain and nausea have massively reduced. I have also had additional ‘side’ benefits – lots of people have commented, unasked, on how my skin looks clear and glowing, and how shiny my hair is! My appetite has become more stable and I feel generally more healthy too. The plan has been an effort for me but it has definitely been worth it.
I feel much better able to manage my life, work and activities when I have my period now – I don’t have to miss out.
I really believe that seeing Sandra has changed my life.
2 YEARS ON, PG SENT THIS MESSAGE:
I just wanted to email you to let you know that my health and endometriosis pains continue to be so much better these days, because of your diet and supplement programme!
I continue to be amazed all the time at how much it has changed, and I tell everyone I meet about it!
I am so grateful to you for changing my life.
Take a deeper dive with my free Endometriosis Explained course
Book a discovery call and see if this approach is right for you
By Sandra Ishkanes
I am a Functional Medicine expert specialising in women’s hormonal health. I work like a health detective, rooting out the underlying causes of hormonal imbalances and I take a whole-body approach to healthcare, combining nutrition, supplements, lifestyle upgrades and cutting-edge biomedical testing.