Pelvic pain and endometriosis with Dr Jessica Drummond

Pelvic pain and endometriosis with Dr Jessica Drummond

Welcome everyone. I have a very special guest today. Today my special guest is going to help us with more tools to boost our immune system and just feel better and live healthier, happier lives. So, I would love to take a moment to read her bio and introduce her to you. Her name is, Dr. Jessica Drummond and she’s the CEO of the Integrative Women’s Health Institute and author of Outsmart Endometriosis. She holds licenses in Physical Therapy and Clinical Nutrition, and is a Board Certified Health Coach. She has 20 years of experience working with women with chronic pelvic pain. She facilitates educational programs for women’s health professionals in more than 60 countries globally, and leads virtual wellness programs for people with endometriosis. Dr. Drummond lives and works with her husband and daughters between Houston, Texas and Fairfield, Connecticut, so welcome Jessica.

Thanks so much Robin, I’m so glad to be here.

This is a really big topic and before we get started on pelvic pain and pelvic concerns for women, we’re in an unprecedented time. Right? And I would just love to get or maybe you could share with us your top three tips to staying, healthier right now.

Yes. So, the challenge with the novel Coronavirus is that we don’t have a lot of literature on how this virus truly functions. We’re taking a lot of leaps from other SARS viruses from, that are similar, other Corona viruses that are similar. But, we do know that in every case of viral infection, the virus has to utilize the cellular mechanics of humans to proliferate. What we need to do is kind of cut it off at the pass. The stronger, and more versatile, and more flexible that the immune health is, the stronger our body is able to fight it off. I think that’s the most important thing we’re always talking about in my Institute, setting a foundation of health, because we can do therapies, we can do therapeutic supplemental interventions, we can do medical therapies, we can do physical therapies on top of that, but if we skip the foundation, none of it works as well. So the foundation is lots and lots of fruits and vegetables, especially vegetables aiming for about eight per day, right now mostly cooked unless you have it in your backyard garden. Now’s the perfect time to start planning a backyard garden, a lot of health, high quality protein, if we can get it, and well absorbed. Some people have a little more time now, some people have less time, but sitting for meals, really slowing down, chewing, optimizing the ability to absorb the nutrients is key. And, I would say the third thing is, to just focus on keeping a nice rhythm. Everything is going to be unpredictable for the next six, eight, twelve weeks or so before you know it, depending on where you live. So having light exposure during the day, having a relatively similar bedtime at night, keeping our nervous system nourished and calm and getting a good night’s sleep, those kinds of foundational things, good hydration is really so important right now. It’s so important, especially if you have a chronic pain condition or an autoimmune condition. The healthier you are on that foundational level, the easier it is to weather anything.

It’s so true, you know, all those things that you shared are huge immune boosters. I mean, just sleep all by itself is like this armor of protection, when you get good restorative sleep. So yeah, just the foundational, basic things, you know, that is, you haven’t shifted some of them, now is a great time to start. And even if you just pick one of the things that Jessica said, it’ll have a huge impact.

Now most of us can’t really go to restaurants anymore. There’s not so much socializing. So here’s your opportunity to cook at home, to drink less alcohol, to stop eating so much sugar, which is a little challenging when you’re under stress. But, think about how you could really learn to cook in a nutrient dense way, like having lots of herbs and spices, and this is, like I said great in general for the time we’re in, but it’s also really good if you’re struggling with any kind of chronic pain or autoimmune condition to learn how to cook with those culinary and spices: oregano, rosemary, garlic, fennel, cinnamon, ginger. There are so many really powerful properties to using these kinds of things on a day-in and day-out basis.

Yeah, absolutely, and YouTube is our friend now, where you can just hop on there and take a cooking class or do anything. I actually… we live in a small house at the beach, and we have a little living room and I moved all the furniture, I rolled back the carpet, and I made a little dance studio.

Nice, actually it’s been fun, we’ve been taking the hip hop classes with my little daughter’s teachers, on zoom and normally I wouldn’t go to her hip hop class, but it’s in our living room now, so, we’re doing it together. It’s actually really fun.

That’s so fun. I love that. Yeah, that’s great. Okay, so let’s dive into pelvic health for women, because it is a concern for most of us at one time or another in our lives. I’d just love for you to share sort of just a general overview of the work you do and tell us a little bit about pelvic health.

Yes, so, I started my career actually in physical therapy and pretty quickly specialized in women’s health, pelvic health, manual therapy for the pelvis. From a PT standpoint, I kind of always work around with my bony pelvis, right? (Dr. Drummond holds up a model.) From a PT standpoint, it’s like there are lots of muscles in the pelvic floor, the joints of the pelvis connect to the hips and the spine and the tailbone; there are all these organs sitting in this pelvic cavity that are supported by a lot of muscle that you can see in there. So the organs are the bladder, the uterus, and ovaries and Fallopian tubes and the rectum. The pelvis is a really important spot orthopedically for anyone who has hip pain, back pain, abdominal pain, bladder issues, constipation, or fecal incontinence. From a kind of biomechanical standpoint, that’s how I first started working with people with endometriosis and pelvic pain.

Endometriosis, just to give you a quick overview of what that is, is a condition where cells that are kind of like the lining of the uterus grow outside of the uterus. So, they’re not exactly the same and it’s not exactly cancer. It’s aberrant cells that are growing in the wrong place, essentially on the outside of ovaries, on the outside of the uterus, on Fallopian tubes, on the bowel, on the small intestine, sometimes in C-section scars, sometimes on the lung, sometimes on the knee; it can be far and wide where the uterus is.

It’s similar to cancer in that these cells can grow and proliferate, and there’s vari