Greetings! I thought you might be interested in a message I received about pain during ovulation. The original message is first, followed by my reply.
I’ve been on the pill since I was 19 years old (I’m now 33 years old). I take that back, I had a son at the age of 29 (I got pregnant two months after stopping the pill) so I was off the pill for about a year during that time. I remember wanting to be off the pill for at least 6 months before trying to conceive because I knew the pill had negative effects on a woman’s body. The first month of my cycle was fine but the 2nd and 3rd months of being off the pill were horrible. The thing about my cycle is that I have SEVERE cramps when I am ovulating. The second month of being off the pill, my ovulation cramps were unbearable (and I have a really high pain tolerance level). The 3rd month of being off the pill my menstrual cramps from my period were really bad and my ovulation time was not as bad. I decided after the 3rd month that I couldn’t take my cycles anymore and during my ovulation (which was not hard to miss since I couldn’t even walk due to the cramps) we tried to conceive and did so in one weekend.
I remember when I was a young teenager, I had these horrible cramps and my mom couldn’t figure out why since I wasn’t having my period. My mom thought it might be appendicitis so she took me to the doctor and he told me it was that I was ovulating. I question what I can do about this painful ovulation. My OB doctor told me to just stay on the pill until menopause and that the only other alternative would be to have a hysterectomy.
My husband and I would like to try for another child in about a year and a half and I want to get off the pill but am afraid of
more painful ovulation. Can you offer any advice?
Pain around ovulation is called mittelschmerz, and I have never read research that identifies its cause. I have also never heard of a case as severe as you describe. That said, let me make a few suggestions. I am on the team of your finding a healthy, non-Pill solution.
First, see if you can do research on the web and at our local public hospital’s library (I would not have been able to write my books without the help of my hospital’s medical librarians) to find the cause of mittelschmerz.
Before you do this, I would strongly recommend that you read the first chapter in my book about reproductive anatomy and physiology so that you know that you have a basic grasp of what happens during a menstrual cycle. Both The Garden of Fertility and Honoring Our Cycles speak to this.
2. I would be very interested in knowing your diet. Caffeine, soy, sugar, white flour, and vegetable oils have been shown to cause many problems in the menstrual cycle. Eliminating these may well help with your problem. Meanwhile, eating healthy fats — including organic butter, cream, and high quality cod liver oil (available at www.greenpasture.org), organic fruits, vegetables, and grains would give you nutrient-dense food to encourage healthy menstrual cycle days.
In both of my books, I talk about food and reproductive health. Again, I recommend that you read what I’ve got and decide what you’d like to experiment with for yourself. You can also get wonderful information about food and health at www.westinaprice.org.
3. It might be worth your experimenting with night lighting so that you are exposed to light at night only during the few nights around ovulation. Again, you can read about this technique in my books.
4. Consider working with a homeopath and/or a Doctor of Oriental Medicine.
5. If you wear high heels, switch to flats so that your pelvic structure isn’t altered.
Very best of luck to you,