4 Ways I Cope With Leg Pain From Endometriosis
Women who have endometriosis find leg pain to be one of their main symptoms. A clinical study from 2011 shows that half of the women with endometriosis do indeed experience this leg pain. Unfortunately, it is not yet known how endometriosis and leg pain are connected, but a more recent study, on rats, may be on the way to figuring this out.
My Leg Pain
My leg pain began a few years before my actual endometriosis diagnosis. The pain would become so excruciating that tears would fill my eyes and my legs would feel like giving out. There is nothing worse than being out in public and trying to hold it together until the pain decides to pass. Most days, the pain would radiate in my pelvis and shoot down my leg all the way to the tips of my toes. It was a good day if it was only occurring in one leg. It became hard to monitor when the pain would strike, because it would happen daily.
I slowly began to see that the worst of the pain would be right before and during my period. After my endometriosis diagnosis, it became clearer that the pain could be occurring because of the endometriosis. Many women recently have come to me asking what I have found to help relieve leg pain. Here are four of my top go-to ideas when I am struggling. Remember, what works for me may not work for you. Be sure to consult with your doctor before trying anything new.
1. Weighted Blanket
Although they are a bit on the pricey side, purchasing a weighted blanket has been the best investment for me. When pain is shooting through my legs, I always look for pressure or weight to put on them. Using my blanket during these times provides just enough pressure on my legs to help soothe and relax me. Amazon has several great blankets to look at.
Several of my columns have mentioned yoga to help with any aches and pains. It truly is one of my most favorite things to do for pain, especially when my legs are feeling achy. One yoga pose, in particular, called Legs Up the Wall or Viparita Karani, is a pose I make sure to do every day. It is known to refresh tired legs.
3. Anti-Inflammatory Diet
Eating an anti-inflammatory diet can help relieve pain associated with endometriosis. Switching to an anti-inflammatory diet has definitely helped with my pains. It does not just happen overnight. It does take a lot of trial and error to find which foods do not work for you. Foods I try to avoid include:
- Red meat
- Fried foods
I try to include more leafy vegetables, fish and chicken, and drink a lot of water. This not only helps with my leg pain, but also with my bloat.
4. Stretches and Light Walking
I know what you are thinking. “The last thing I want to do when my legs hurt is go for a walk.” But getting outside and taking a brisk walk through my neighborhood always seems to relax my achy legs and me. Some days, if I do not feel like going outside, I walk at a slow pace on my treadmill. This, too, feels just as good. It is always good to stretch your legs, even if they are not hurting. Some of my favorite stretches I use often.
Follow this journey on My Endo Journey.
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