New Year, New Birth Control Options for Painful Periods

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5,4,3,2,1, Happy New Year!! The New Year is vastly approaching, and everyone is so ready to start new beginnings, new adventures, and new year’s resolutions. The last thing you want to interrupt your Auld Lang Syne solo is the thought of effects from the night’s festivity choices. According to cosmopolitan (link site), fall and winter have the highest conception rates resulting in more babies being born in the summertime. This trend has a heavy factor on social and biological factors such as company/friends Christmas parties and New Year’s celebrations.  

By now you are wondering what options are out there for you when it comes to birth control, ESPECIALLY if you already suffer with painful periods. Many women between the ages of 18-50 yrs. old suffer from endometriosis or uterine fibroids. Most women have no choice but to go through these “life’s pains”. Ask yourself- what can you do to help manage these pains while keeping your goals of non-pregnancy? Here are some steps to assist you in meeting your needs for birth control as well as managing your painful periods.  

Source: (https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321402

9 Home remedies for treating Endometriosis and Uterine Fibroid symptoms 

  1. Heat– Taking a warm bath or placing a heating pad or hot water bottle on the lower abdomen can help relax cramping pelvic muscles and reduce pain. 
  1. Pelvic massage– Pelvic massage may ease endometriosis-related pain. Manipulation of the pelvis and lower back may increase blood flow to the area, relaxing it and reducing pain associated with scar tissue from this condition.  
  1. Over-the-counter pain relievers– Pain medications such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve) are examples of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that are available over the counter. Note: always consult your doctor when taking this type of over-the-counter medications particularly for long periods of time. 
  1. Dietary changes- avoid potentially problematic foods that are heavily processed and/or contain dairy, gluten, and/or sugars. Bonus Tip: Even with similar conditions, everyone’s body is different- Keep a food diary to help you identify any foods that may better/worsen your symptoms. 
  1. Rest- Stress reduction is key- during the day, taking a few minutes to rest, such as by practicing deep breathing, taking a walk, or listening to music, as this may help reduce stress. 
  1. Herbal supplements- Research (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov) has found that white peony, licorice, and a mix of Sea buckthorn and St. John’s wort may provide some pain relief for people with endometriosis. Bonus tip: Turmeric may also help ease uterine fibroid and endometriosis related pains as well.  
  1. Omega-3 fatty acids- Research (https://www.sciencedirect.com) has also suggested that omega-3 fatty acids may help prevent the tissue that characterizes endometriosis from forming. Fatty fish, such as salmon, contain these acids. 
  1. Monitor- Take time to check your blood pressure, at minimum once a day. Make a journal of your levels so you can know what contributed to levels that may be higher than normal to help you avoid having elevated blood pressure. Bonus tip: Limit your salt and high sodium processed/package foods.  
  1.  Light exercise- Regular exercise helps release endorphins. These “feel good” hormones can help (https://www.endometriosisaustralia.org/) reduce pain related to endometriosis and uterine fibroids.  

In the end, always do what feels best for your body when it comes to pain management brought on by endometriosis or uterine fibroids. Birth control is not for everyone, however in today’s society and schedules, planned pregnancies have higher success rates of a brighter future not just for mommy but also for the child (in this blogger’s opinion). Celebrating New Years with a painful period is possible- the more you know about your symptoms/options, the more you can rest easy and focus on life’s bigger issues such as, “What is going to be my New Year’s resolution?”,  

Happy holidays, and an even happier New Year! We hope it’s your happiest & healthiest one yet. 

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