Endometriosis: What is it? How can occupational therapy help?

March is Endometriosis Awareness Month. 1 in 10 women will suffer from endometriosis during their lifetime. Many women are often suffering in silence, as it takes 7 years, on average, to get a diagnosis. Endometriosis is the number one cause of infertility among women.


What is endometriosis:

According to Endometriosis.org: Endometriosis is defined as a condition in which tissues similar to that in the uterus, grow outside of the uterus. It is most commonly found on other reproductive and urogenital organs such as ovaries, bladder, bowels, and fallopian tubes, but in rare cases it can also be found on the diaphragm, and in the lungs.


What are the symptoms of endometriosis?

Symptoms can include, but are not limited to:

  • Painful periods

  • Painful ovulation

  • Pain during or after intercourse

  • Chronic pelvic pain

  • Heavy bleeding

  • Fatigue

  • Infertility

In addition to all of these, endometriosis can also affect general physical, mental, and social well being


How can pelvic floor therapy help?

Although pelvic floor therapy can not cure endometriosis as there is no cure, it can help to strengthen the pelvic floor, decrease pain with sexual intercourse, and treat other co-morbidities, such as interstitial cystitis (painful bladder syndrome) for improved quality of life overall.


If you have been diagnosed with endometriosis, or have many of the same symptoms listed above, I encourage you to talk to your primary care physician about next steps in care.


You can also book a free consultation at firstyearsmaternalhealth.com to see if pelvic floor therapy is a good fit for your concerns.


For more information on endometriosis, please visit the following websites:

Endofound.org

Endometriosis.org

womenshealth.gov


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