ESPN Host Molly Qerim said it best: Managing endometriosis is like " a second job."
That's why so many women with the disease have found themselves looking down at their smartphones for uplifting advice and help with tracking their symptoms with a quick tap or swipe. They're not alone, either: a recent study by Flurry, a mobile analytics company, showed that health-related app usage has skyrocketed to 330 percent within the last three years. Whether you've already been diagnosed, or suspect those bad periods are definitely endo and need help convincing your doc, here are a few to try:
Stage IV Endometriosis warrior Melissa Turner developed Endo Empowered to provide women with the tools she used to improve her endo experience. There are dietary and lifestyle suggestions to help naturally manage endo symptoms, as well as a 21-day wellness challenge. (Going to bed before 10:00 PM or eating something green each day are just a few of the to-do's). Another popular feature? Daily self-care reminders, which can be set to any time, in any time zone. “The Endo Empowered platform was inspired by a strong desire to help women around the world by empowering them with tools, support, and hope to manage endometriosis and make life a little easier,” says Turner.
After suffering years of unexplained symptoms and multiple hospital visits, Flutter founder Kristy Curry was diagnosed with endometriosis at age 28. Soon after, she sought out on a mission to help other women more quickly navigate the road to diagnosis. Curry and her husband, both app-designers and developers, created Flutter. The app comes complete with a community to share experiences with as well as a handy symptom tool that can help users better advocate for themselves in the doctor's office. “I also wanted an easy way to share a journal with your doctor, so we added an export tool," says Curry, who is also a board member for The Endometriosis Foundation of America. "The journal allows detailed symptomatology tracking that’s specific to endometriosis, which may help with screening and symptom management. And sharing the tracker with your doctor can eventually help with diagnosis."
There's no need to feel like you're going it alone with endo. There's MyEndometriosisTeam, a social network, and online support group. A location-based tool, “Find People Like You,” helps you meet friends by location, diagnosis, and age. The app also allows you to browse endo stories and updates. Need an endo specialist? You can locate providers with a keyworded search and browse other MyEndoTeam users' reviews.
Created by EndoFound-funded researcher Noemie Elhadad, Phendo is a research app that allows women to self-track, manage, and understand endometriosis. It is part of Citizen Endo, a Columbia University research project which focuses on raising awareness about endometriosis. Women age 13 and over, who have had at least one menstrual period, can use the app. You can add data about your daily experiences, which helps researchers have a clearer understanding of what it’s like to live with endo.Women can also track foods, medications, hormones, supplements, and even exercises that improve or worsen their endo symptoms.
Feeling unbalanced? Functional nutritionist and women’s hormone expert Alisa Vitti created MyFLO to help users identify patterns in their symptoms that point to specific hormonal imbalances. The app helps you know when your period is due, tracks the regularity or irregularity of your cycle, sexual activity, and has tools to calculate your fertility window. It also analyzes which symptoms are recurrent, and based on these patterns, suggests a weekly, food-based prescription to resolve them. MyFLO will also suggest work, exercise, food, social, and intimate activities that are most compatible to the phase of your cycle you’re in.