Pain Management Options
Given the current state of the opioid epidemic in America, you basically have to be on your deathbed to be prescribed any “real” pain management medication. This leaves those of us with terrible endometriosis pain to desperately seek out other pain management options. After all, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and naproxen can only get a girl so far.
Living in the real world
In a perfect world, when endometriosis pain was bad, we would all have the luxury of kicking back, putting our feet up, and cranking up that heating pad to max. But the reality is that most of us can’t afford the time or disruption in our life to do that. So, what options are we left with?
Endometriosis pain management options
Mobile heat/ice packs
Access to heat and ice packs on the go has come a long way in the last few years. Portable, rechargeable heating pads are just a click away, and in my experience, work REALLY well, especially if I have to be on my feet and busy when pain is at its worst. Most look a little bulky under clothes, but if I’m just working around my house, it doesn’t really bother me much.
LOVE my TENS unit! TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) units use a low-level electrical current to interrupt pain signals to the brain. They are available with wires or wireless, and there are even some battery operated ones available. In my experience, these are very discreet and effective.
While somewhat controversial in nature, CBD oil does a remarkable job managing endometriosis pain. It contains natural anti-inflammatory properties and it is easy to adjust the dosage as needed. Not to be confused with medical marijuana, CBD doesn’t contain (or sometimes only contains trace amounts) of THC, the chemical in marijuana responsible for the “high” feeling. CBD oil is available in many forms to help manage endometriosis pain.
You can use drops under your tongue (sublingual), vape, gummies, or rub-on creams and oils. If I could go back to my teenage self and give CBD oil to me, I would in a heartbeat. Perhaps I would have saved myself the ulcers that I ended up with from too much ibuprofen!
The root cause of endometriosis pain is inflammation. PEMF stands for pulsed electromagnetic field therapy. It uses low electromagnetic radiation pulses to heal damaged tissues and inflammation. I recently tried one of these units (for a different condition) and I was really surprised when I discovered how well this worked on my endometriosis pain. So many times I thought, if only I had this sooner, I could have saved myself so many sleepless nights and pain.
I know, when endometriosis pain is at its worst, all you want to do is curl up in a ball and cry. I’ve been there. In fact, I was there just last week. However, I forced myself to stretch. And after about 10 minutes of simple stretches in the morning, I was able to get up out of bed and get to my TENS unit. I know, it seems counter-intuitive but it works.
Sad to say, there is no perfect solution. Even these endometriosis pain management options have their limitations. How do you manage your endometriosis pain?
Do you know someone that has made a difference with endometriosis advocacy?