Did you know that March is National Endometriosis Awareness Month? Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory disease that causes immense pain, organ dysfunction, and in some cases infertility. It affects 10-15% of women between the ages of 18-44. In our latest blog, we talk about endometriosis and how naturopathic medicine can help.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a gynecological disorder that occurs when endometrium tissues grow outside the uterus. Endometrium plays an important role in the female reproductive system. It is a thick layer of tissue that lines the uterus. It helps in the development of a fetus, providing it the necessary nutrients it needs to grow. Outside of pregnancy, the endometrium is shed once a month during menstruation. When it grows outside the uterus, it fails to expel as it should and instead develops into a cyst. As the cyst grows, surrounding organs such as the fallopian tubes, ovaries, bowls, and bladders become irritated and inflamed. Prolonged irritation and inflammation causes a slew of other complications that can be very difficult to manage.
What are the Common Symptoms of Endometriosis?
The primary symptom of Endometriosis is pelvic pain, similar to cramping experienced during menstruation. The pain usually starts off manageable and eventually worsens over time. Common signs include:
- Painful periods (Dysmenorrhea) or excessive bleeding (during or between periods)
- Pain during intercourse
- Discomfort during urination of bowel movements or trouble using the restroom in general (diarrhea or constipation)
What causes of Endometriosis?
Unfortunately, there isn’t a single known cause of endometriosis. However, many studies show a correlation between endometriosis and retrograde menstruation as well as Mullerian anomalies. Retrograde menstruation is when menstrual flow goes in the wrong direction. Instead of flowing down it travels up into fallopian tubes, transporting endometrium tissue with it and causing them to build up overtime. Mullerian anomalies refer to underdeveloped or malformed reproductive organs. Other factors that may play a role in the development of endometriosis include hormonal imbalance, immunological dysfunction, surgical scar implantation, and exposure to toxic environments.
What is a Naturopathic Approach to Endometriosis?
Endometriosis can be really difficult to manage. If you suffer with endometriosis there is no doubt that you’ve tried all sort of things to help deal with it better. Naturopathic medicine is a holistic approach that works. It addresses the patient as a whole. Naturopathic doctors not only address the pain as it is but considers the patients, mind, body, and spirit all together. Naturopathic doctors use a combination of customized nutrition plans, natural remedies, and supplements to help strengthen the patient’s immune system and improve their conditions. The goal of naturopathic doctor is to help restore balance in the body by addressing nutritional deficiencies, hormonal imbalance, and reduce environmental toxins. In addition, they help provide emotional support as patients learn to navigate life with their diagnosis.
Naturopathic Doctor in San Diego, CA
Endometriosis can make life hard for many people. It can cause debilitating pain, that makes the simplest tasks a whole ordeal. Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for endometriosis. Often, patients are given pain medication to help manage the pain and not much more. In severe circumstances, surgical treatments are recommended. In naturopathic medicine, the patient is cared for on a whole other level. Working with a naturopathic doctor allows for a whole-patient approach, which means you get more care than basic pain management. A naturopathic doctor works closely with patients to ensure optimal health conditions and bodily functions. At Moonstone Naturopathic, we are committed to helping people live happy and healthy lives despite their diagnosis. Contact Dr. Brandy McGill to make an appointment by calling (619) 784-3118 or clicking here.
*The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your health provider.