Flare up tips

When you feel like you are in the ‘eye of the storm’ with a flare up, it is good to have a kit bag of useful tips and tricks to support you to ‘get through’. Over lockdown a number of you told us you were experiencing flare ups, so we asked YOU for your top tips! Below is a collection from you, our community. 

Hang in there endo warrior ~ you got this!

Heat – heat pad, hottie bag, wheat bag.

Hot water – bath (with Epson salts/bubbles), hot shower with the water pressure directed at your back or stomach or if you feel like getting out and about visit some salt water or thermal pools.

Hydrate – herbal teas, ginger ale, peppermint tea/oil or turmeric tea are great for nausea.

Give yourself permission to relax and have less ‘deliverables’. Be kind to yourself, what would you say to your best friend if they were unwell? Are there some things you can get others to do ie. cooking dinner, running kids to after school activities, change a work deadline or work from home?

Move! Around the block, walk the dog, dance around your living room to some cheesy 80’s tunes, anything to get the blood flowing. With the advent of online classes, there are a number of yoga/ zumba/ meditation sessions available.

Create a nurturing space, your nest/haven – whether with candles, freshly picked flowers, groovy relaxing music or in a bean bag with a good book or podcast.

Elastic waistbands and comfy clothes are our best friends – why try to suck yourself into your jeans if you are bloated or in pain?

Touch/massage – a good organic magnesium rub does wonders or an anti-flam cream.

Mindfulness  – diaphragmatic breathing, meditation, rest, sleep then sleep some more!

Essential oils – Diffuse or some brands let you apply directly to skin or with a carrier oil. Clary sage, stress away… peace and calming.

Med management – create a good relationship with your GP, gynaecologist, herbalist; having an array of medication available for various types of and intensity of pain.

Know your body and avoid any flare up foods – it could be fatty foods, gluten, alcohol, coffee or sugar. Reading up on nutrition and inflammation could be very useful.

Be self-aware and track your symptoms and cycles – that way you may be able to plan ahead when you think you might have a flare up/PMS in the pipeline.  Apps such as body scan, @breathwrk app and pain management meditation on @calm app or the app Bearable to monitor symptoms.

Connection with others, whether in person with hugs, touch or via Facetime or on the phone. You are not alone, but at times we forget to reach out. We often feel guilty if we’re just laying there when we’re in chronic pain. Acknowledge your pain and allow yourself to be pampered or do what works for you.

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Strength through support - mā te tautoko, ka whai kaha, ka ora

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