healing painful periods (endometriosis) naturally
Wednesday Feb 6, 2019
Author: Christine Silvestrone
Leading up to my period, starting a week ahead I drank ginger tea in the morning and chamomile tea at night. 2 days prior to the date my period was supposed to start I took fennel extract three times per day (I am experimenting with fennel extract as a pain killer, so far, the results are inconclusive.) my period was supposed to start January 29, but it did not start until February 5, 6 days late! I believe my period was so late because of my drastic diet change but I can’t be for sure because so many factors could affect your period i.e. stress, diet change, exercise, big life change, and many other things. when my period finally came February 5 at 1:00 pm I wasn’t feeling to bad. Usually when I start my period I get severe, debilitating cramping and often, if I do not take ibuprofen (I did not take ibuprofen at all during this period because I am trying to get off it) I will throw up multiple times. From 1:00 pm to 11:00 pm I was feeling slightly crampy but not horrible, I was able to study for my health coach certification exam that I had the next day! I know! Bad timing, your period really knows when to show up to ruin your life.
I went to bed around 11 o’clock and that’s when things went south. Often when I lay down my cramps will get worse. I tried to fall asleep for an hour, but my cramps were killing me, and I just couldn’t fall asleep, they continued to get worse and worse until about an hour and a half in I threw up. This was very frustrating for me because I was expecting to have a pain free period, but these things take time and its going to take longer then one cycle to repair my gut and become completely pain free on my period. My cramps continued to hurt, and I thought to myself several times if I just take ibuprofen I could make the pain go away and I could go to sleep and rest for my exam, but I was determined to not use ibuprofen. It was important to me that I no longer let ibuprofen be my crutch and continue to reck havoc on my liver. The pain lasted another hour and a half, a total of 3 hours, then finally I was able to sleep. this sounds like a nightmare, and yes it felt like a nightmare, but believe it or not this is a lot better then my previous periods and I only expect it to get better as I heal myself. In the past I would have thrown up multiple time and I most likely would be up all night if I did not take ibuprofen, so this was a win for me even though I did have to go through three hours of precious sleep time in pain.
The next morning wasn’t horrible but I was still getting cramps, I was feeling a bit weak, and I was having a hard time eating food without feeling nauseous. I ate a salad and I studied for my exam before I went in at one to take the exam. I didn’t feel too hot when I was taking the exam, but I was functioning enough to take and pass my exam, which I don’t believe would have been the case in the past before my diet change. Mid-day I started to feel more normal, I was no longer cramping, and after eating I felt a lot better and no longer felt nauseous, I was out of the woods and realized I no longer had to be tortured by my dreaded period, for now, until next month. I believe that with my diet change, physical activity, and consuming lots of anti-inflammatory, probiotic rich, and high fiber food my period would continue to get less and less painful.
We can’t plan for when our period comes because sometimes mother nature is unpredictable, we can’t make plans around our periods because it may come 6 days late and land on your exam date, we need to improve our period so its not debilitating, so it’s not impossible to preform important tasks while experiencing our periods. So often we dread the day our period comes, and we plan all our important events, and plans around our period start date, then we feel cheated, unlucky, and screwed over when our period decides to be unpredictable and land on the exact date we planned it to miss. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to have to plan things around my painful period, I want to have a pain free period that I can function with in any situation. I am currently creating a gut cleansing program to heal my body and to reduce my menstrual pain. I am my own guinea pig, and I would like to heal me, so I can help heal other women with endometriosis. No one should live with this type of pain, 1 in 10 women live with this debilitating disease and experience excruciating pain every month if not more often. This is just my first period after starting my program and its just the start of my journey, and although I am already noticing changes in my health I expect to continue to heal and feel better and better as I progress with the program.
Saturday March 9th, 2019
This is period number two in my journey to healing my endometriosis period pain through gut health healing. My period is continuing to improve but there is still more progress to be made.
I started my period mid-day with zero pain. Like last month my period came 5 or 6 days late. About 2 weeks before this period came I started drinking raspberry leaf/ginger tea every morning to help with my period pain when it came (I will be writing more about this later in my blog). Normally when I start my period about an hour in I start to get severe cramping and I begin to throw up but this time I was fine all day.
Night time is the time I have been struggling with lately. When it comes to night time I begin to feel nauseous and I start to cramp a lot (laying down makes my cramps worse). Around 10:00pm my cramps started to get worse and they lasted for about two hours and I threw up twice. This might sound horrible! Don’t get me wrong it was! BUT I didn’t take any ibuprofen and normally I would be in pain and throwing up almost all night and day! this was a win for my, I was only in pain for 2 hours, I only threw up twice, and I took ZERO ibuprofen.
I believe that avoiding ibuprofen has helped my period improve but more importantly I believe my diet has helped my period improve by 90%. My period is continuing to get less and less painful and shorter and shorter amounts of pain. Healing doesn’t happen over night so I don’t feel like this was a fail because I still had pain on my period I feel like this was a win because I had reduced pain and I believe that my pain will continue to reduce till I have little to no pain on my period.
My bowel movements still get loose on my period, but I am not having pain with the bowel movements like I did before. Normally on my period I would have very painful bowel movements, because I would be getting poo cramps as well as period cramps but now I don’t get either cramps.
My period can be a very dreaded time for me but the fact that I get to experiment and heal my period pain and share my experience with others makes me look forward to my period and the future.
Sunday Apr. 14, 2019
This month was the third and last month of my program, my body is feeling good I feel so healthy and happy. This month I drank raspberry leaf/ginger tea every day (minus a few days I got busy or forgot) this helped a ton with inflammation. Why raspberry leaf tea? Raspberry leaf tea helps tone and tighten muscles in the pelvic area, this helps reduce the menstrual cramping caused by the spasms of these muscles. Raspberry leaf tea also provides iron which is important for women with a heavy menstrual cycle. I also kept up with my diet and exercise and its also very important to mention that I kept my stress levels low by spending a lot of time outside, using breathing exercises, meditating, and taking time to myself. Stress can be very bad for your health and can also cause more painful cramps during your period its important to try to relax and de-stress as much as possible.
After doing all this and getting to a state where my body feels amazing with tons of energy my dreaded period was approaching and like always I started to get nervous. In the past my periods have been extremely painful often times they start mid-day and I have to go home from work due to throwing up and the inability to perform any tasks or even walk around. Often times at night I wouldn’t get to bed till 2-3 in the morning due to throwing up from very painful cramps. If I took ibuprofen early enough before the symptoms of my period came on then I had a slight chance of not vomiting but I still had very painful cramps and I was done taking ibuprofen, I didn’t want it destroying my liver anymore because I was taking it once a month for several days.
I created my program and I began to follow it and I watched my period get better and better for the past two periods I did not take ibuprofen and although I did throw up it wasn’t several times throughout the day, it was a small chunk of my day so I knew I was improving.
Although my past two periods were improving this third period of my third month of my program was different. As my period was approaching I waited, hoping I would see even a little bit of improvement from the last period, my period was five days late but when it arrived I had zero pain! I was outside playing soccer when I went to the bathroom and noticed I was bleeding (TMI) I was very surprised to be bleeding but not feeling any pain. I went back to playing soccer for an hour with no discomfort. This was similar to my past two periods where I wasn’t experiencing pain during the day when I first started my period (unlike in the past). I was happy to not be experiencing pain during the day, but my big challenge was coming up, night time. Night time was always the worst for me, as soon as I go to lay down the pain would come on and the nausea would begin, and I would have to sit up trying to avoid vomiting just to end up vomiting in the end and going to bed at 2-3 in the morning.
The night of this period I went to lay down for bed expecting to feel lots of discomfort, pain, and sleep deprivation but none of this happens! I felt very little cramping; no pain and I fell right to sleep and stayed asleep till my alarm went off in the morning. This is a huge victory for me, I no longer have to live with the pain of my period, I no longer have to go home due to vomiting, I no longer have to fear my period coming, I no longer have to pop ibuprofen once a month, I no longer have to be a slave to endometriosis or my period. I took control of my health, I did the research, I used my knowledge, I experimented with what worked and what didn’t, I put my all into this because all I wanted was to be healthy and pain free. I did the work so I could be pain free and I could help other women become pain free. No one should have to live with this pain and I want to show women that they don’t have to.
Don’t ever let anyone tell you there’s nothing you can do for the pain, you’re just exaggerating it’s not that bad, the only thing you can do is take birth control and ibuprofen. All these statements are wrong, you don’t have to live with the pain, you’re not exaggerating when your vomiting and bed ridden, and birth control and ibuprofen are not the answer they are simply a band aid that often doesn’t work.
If you want to hear more about my experience, how I got to where I am, have any questions, want more information about my 3 month gut health program, or simply need to talk to someone about your pain don’t hesitate to reach out by phone or email.