Endometriosis is not preventable, but there are things you can do to reduce your risk.

Endometriosis is a common chronic condition seen in people assigned female at birth. Currently, it is not preventable, but there are some things you can do to reduce your risk factors for this condition.

Here are some tips for reducing your risk of endometriosis.

Although endometriosis is not preventable, certain lifestyle changes may help reduce your risk.

Engage in regular physical activity

You may reduce your chances of developing endometriosis if you regularly participate in physical activity.

A 2016 review of research revealed that exercise could help lessen the risk of endometriosis, although it may not make a significant difference.

More research is needed to determine the effectiveness of regular physical activity on endometriosis risk reduction.

Speak with a doctor about birth control options

There may be a connection between estrogen levels in the body and endometriosis. Lowering estrogen in your body may help reduce your risk of endometriosis.

Research suggests that hormonal birth control, which comes in pills, patches, and rings, may help lower estrogen levels in your body and slow the growth of endometrial-like tissue.

Limit alcohol intake

In an analysis of 23 studies on the connection between alcohol consumption and endometriosis, researchers found evidence to support a correlation between moderate alcohol consumption and endometriosis.

While more research is needed to fully understand the connection, one possible reason for this connection may be the effect alcohol has on the way your body metabolizes estrogen. This can cause blood estrogen levels to spike, which may have an impact on the production of endometrial-like tissue.

Hysterectomy is sometimes recommended as treatment for endometriosis.

While some research suggests hysterectomy may help reduce or prevent some symptoms, such as heavy or painful menstrual periods, in people who have already been diagnosed with endometriosis, there is no research to support hysterectomy as a way to prevent endometriosis.

You may have a higher risk of developing endometriosis if you:

  • have an immediate family member like a mother or sister with an endometriosis diagnosis
  • started your period before age 11 years
  • have short monthly cycles that are less than 27 days
  • are unable to become pregnant or to carry a pregnancy to term
  • experience heavy periods that last more than 7 days

If you’re concerned about developing endometriosis or are experiencing symptoms, consider consulting a doctor.

Ahead of your appointment, it can be helpful to prepare a list of any pain or discomfort you may have to share with the doctor.

If they believe you are displaying signs and symptoms of endometriosis, they may suggest ordering tests like an ultrasound or pelvic exam for further evaluation.

Endometriosis is not a preventable condition. But you may be able to reduce your risk of developing endometriosis by taking preventive measures like limiting alcohol intake and exercising regularly.

Talk with a doctor if you’re concerned about your risk of endometriosis.