Sometimes, the smallest changes have the biggest impact.
There’s a phenomenon within my coaching community. One small self-care act is revolutionizing how they feel: regular magnesium baths.
Perhaps you already know that magnesium is helpful for cramps, but it does so much more than that. In fact, it plays a role in more than 300 enzyme processes that are essential to keeping our bodies alive and healthy.
Magnesium is involved in reactions that produce energy, ensure good brain health, maintain balanced blood sugar, and support a healthy immune system. All necessary functions, especially for those of us with endometriosis and chronic conditions. We may suffer from brain fog, chronic fatigue, and immune system dysfunction, and balanced blood sugar is essential for healthy hormones.
The problem is that many of us are deficient in this essential nutrient. In fact, this deficiency is so prevalent, and magnesium so important to overall health, that scientists are calling it a public health crisis.
Some of the symptoms of magnesium deficiency mimic symptoms that many people with endometriosis struggle with, such as:
- Migraines or headaches
- Muscular weakness
- Poor cognitive processing
- Body/muscular pain
- Sleep disturbances
- Premenstrual syndrome
Ensuring optimum magnesium levels could even help reduce some of your endometriosis symptoms. Maintaining healthy levels of magnesium can reduce chronic inflammation and oxidation levels, lessen period and overall bodily pain, and alleviate other symptoms like constipation.
Magnesium baths are one way to counteract a deficiency. Research has shown that people achieve the greatest benefit by soaking in 500-600 grams of magnesium sulfate (Epsom salts) two to three times a week for at least 10 minutes.
Pay attention to the quantity. Whenever my clients are not feeling the benefits, I double-check how much Epsom salt they’re using, and it’s never the full amount. When they increase the measurement, they notice a huge difference!
I get it — we’re all busy, and taking a magnesium bath might not reach the top of your to-do list very often. But every time my clients make room for a magnesium bath, they always wish they’d done it sooner. They come back to me raving about how much better they slept and how they feel more energized, calm, and in less pain. They vow to prioritize it as one of their most important endo self-care rituals.
Even as a health coach, it’s difficult to fit in as many baths as I’d like. Given that so many of us with endo struggle with low energy, the idea of cleaning the bath out and delaying getting to bed probably isn’t appealing. So, following are some tips that my clients find useful:
Aim for one bath a week, not three. Often, when we set goals that are too difficult to reach, we don’t even start to try. If you can manage one bath, you’ve already won, and any others are a bonus.
Talk to your loved ones or partner about helping you to prepare a bath once a week. My partner knows that getting the bath ready is physically challenging for me with my pelvic floor dysfunction and adhesions, so he always cleans and fills the bath for me when I’m not up to it.
If you can afford to (and once it’s safe post-COVID-19), hire a cleaner — even if they only spend one hour a week cleaning your bathroom. Then, on the day your tub is squeaky clean, hop in.
Invest in easy-to-use cleaning tools. I recently stumbled across an extendable tub and tile scrubber, which basically looks like a mop for the bath and saves me from having to bend over across the tub to reach the corners. As someone with adhesions, that’s not a pleasant task! Thankfully, these kinds of cleaning devices come in at around $10. If you’ve got the budget to splash out, there are now cordless cleaning kits that are a bit like a power drill for cleaning. Essentially, these scrubbers are power-operated and extendable, so all you have to do is basically stand there.
Buy Epsom salts in bulk and keep them in your bathroom cupboard. Seeing the Epsom salts on a daily basis will keep bath time at the forefront of your mind, and you’ll never have the excuse of not having any in the house.
Try setting a regular time and day for your baths, such as Sunday morning or Friday night after work. That way they become something to look forward to rather than a task to fit in.
If you don’t have a bathtub, try a weekly foot soak or use a magnesium oil spray when you get out of the shower each day.
Note: Endometriosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Endometriosis News or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to endometriosis.